It starts soon after you’ve popped out your first bub. (Popped out, pfft, if only it was that simple). You’ve barely got your head around the fact that you’re a mum and people are asking you ‘So, when are you thinking of having number 2?’. Most of my friends are on to their second babies now. I feel like the only one who’s going ‘Yeah, na, no thanks. Not just yet. Hopefully at some stage but not any time soon.’
To be honest, and with all respect to those that are trying and/or struggling to make baby, if I found out I was pregnant right now, the news would be met with a little more ‘Holy crap’ and a little less ‘This is the best thing ever’. We would of course make the best of it and get our heads around it and make it work, however it would not involve quite the bouncing around and happy tears that our first set of 2 little pink lines did. In all honesty, hubby and I have even discussed the idea of not having any more. (Gasp! How could she??) He adores his daughter and is happy with things just as they are. He knows I have always wanted two though, and that’s still the plan at this stage, however it will likely be a good couple of years before we talk about conceiving again.
I think it’s lovely how people have their babies close together so that they are close in age and will play together and have a lovely bond and all that. And to those mums, hats off to you. Some of my closest friends have 2 babies within 18 or so months of each other and I honestly don’t know how they do it. I could not even imagine having 2 in nappies. Like seriously. How do you get out of the house?! I don’t think I would ever get anything done and would soon be losing my marbles.
That’s not the only reason though. Here is my list of why I am not planning to have another baby anytime soon.
1. I want my body to be mine for a little while.
I am still breastfeeding my 16 month old. Yeah, I know, STILL! I am pretty close to being over it but she’s not ready to give it up yet so we’ll stick it out a bit longer. I want there to be some time that my body is just mine and my hormones are somewhat normal before I go and get pregnant again. That may sound selfish but it’s how I feel and I think I deserve that, at least for a little while. Plus, I need some god damn sleep. I am hoping once miss muffet is weaned she might FINALLY start sleeping through. Wish me luck on that one.
2. We are running out of room!
We have a beautiful little house that is very much home to us, but if there is going to be another little munchkin we will need more space. I realise that many people raise lots of kids in much smaller houses than mine, but I am a person who likes to have a place for everything and I am running out of places for stuff. Top of my wishlist is an open plan kitchen. Oh how wonderful it would be to be able to potter around my kitchen while watching my kiddies play with their toys in the lounge. And to set up my laptop and work from the kitchen benchtop with my family bustling around me – heaven. Next year… fingers crossed that we find (and are in a position to buy) our big beautiful home next year.
3. I want to send them to a private school.
The high school I want to send my kids to is mega expensive. Like crazy pricey. But it’s a great school and I have my heart set on my kids going there. I figure if we have them a few years apart then it is only a short time that we will be paying double the tuition. I know all the stats about public schools being just as good, and I also realise that it depends on the child as to what and how they will learn. That being said, if we can manage it, I would love my kids to go to school where I did. If they can do what I did and get a scholarship, even better, but we’ll see.
4. I need to build my business.
If we are going to have the dream home and the private school education then we are going to need a more substantial second income. I want to use this time to build my business to a point where I can be paid well for doing what I love, while also being there to care for my kids. That’s the ultimate dream. To do that, and then to help other women do the same. It’s a massive juggle and I rely on family a lot to allow me time to work and study. With one bub it’s relatively easy for the grandparents to watch her for a morning or an afternoon, but I feel like taking on two of them might be a bigger ask and might result in that dream being pushed a little further into the distance.
5. I want to give her all of me while she’s little.
My baby is a big cuddle bunny. She is very confident and loves to explore but she also likes to keep mummy close by. I am not sure how she would go if I suddenly had a tiny baby that needed me even more than she does. I have not forgotten how physically and emotionally taxing it is to be pregnant, to give birth and to care for a newborn. I also know how challenging some of the developmental stages that 2 and 3 year olds go through are. Both at once? Eeek! I am hoping that by the time I am having baby number 2, my cheeky monkey is heading off to kinder and is at that next stage of finding a bit more independence. (Of course I know she will always need her mummy, I’m 30 and still need mine.)
6. It’s what I know
I am my mother’s only child, however my dad remarried and had 2 more children later in life. My half-brothers (although I never refer to them as that) were born when I was 10 and 14. I loved the larger age gap and I developed a beautiful bond with them. I feel like I was even able to play a part in raising them. The age difference between the 2 of them was also great in some ways. I remember sitting and feeding Corey when he was just a little baby, and Jakey was running out the door saying ‘I’m going to play with the kids out the front!’. It’s like my little brother was growing up, but I still had my baby brother who was happy to sit and snuggle with me, which was lovely. By the way, that baby brother is now a 16 year old young man who turns to mush around his niece. It’s a beautiful thing to see.
7. I’m still young-ish
I always wanted to be a mum by 30, and I was very lucky to conceive almost instantly upon deciding to. I became a mum just before I turned 29. I know I’m lucky that time is on my side. Anything can happen of course, but I am a healthy young women and all going according to plan we will have baby number 2 before I’m 35. I feel deeply for the women who struggle to get pregnant, or who don’t find themselves in a position to start a family until later in life. I know that I’m blessed and as a person who practices gratitude I do not take any of that for granted at all.
8. My baby won’t be lonely
My little girl has 4 cousins who are close to her in age. I also have lots of girlfriends with young kids. I take her to lots of fun places with other children. She is around other kids nearly every day. I was an only child until I was 10. I don’t remember ever feeling lonely or bored. I have lovely memories of playing with my cousins and neighbors and having friends over. I know that I was also able to sit and draw or read or play by myself without any issue. My mum is an incredible women and she always spent so much time one on one with me, teaching me things, making up games and singing songs. To this day I have a beautiful bond with my mum. Of course people with lots of siblings can also have amazing bonds with their mum. I just know that I was able to do some really cool stuff that a lot of other kids didn’t get to do, like traveling overseas and going to Disneyland, just me and my mum. She made sure I was never lonely and I know I will do the same for my precious girl.
All that being said, I am a big believer in fate, and I know that the universe will decide what is meant to be for us. Whether that includes being blessed with another baby (or more – eek?!) only time will tell. Either way I know that I am grateful for my little minnie and will continue to soak up every moment I have with her. I realise I can plan my little heart out but if and when those plans go out the window, all I can do is open my arms and enjoy the ride!
Ok, sleep time for this mumma.
Much love to you and yours, Carlie xx