So, When Are You Having Another One?

I think someone first asked me this mere weeks, if not days, after the Kid was born.  The answer--which is the same now as it was then--is, we're not making any decisions for quite awhile.

"I don't know" is actually a concession for me.  For most of my life up until the Kid was born, I was firmly convinced that I would only have one child.  I love my brother and sisters, and can't imagine life without them.  Honestly, though, I've always been a little afraid that, if I had two, I would love one more than the other thus screwing them both up for life. 

Having the Kid has made me realize that fear is unfounded.  It's like, before, the scale of how much you could love someone went from 1-10.  Now it's from 1-100.  And that feeling?  Is so addictive.  I've had a taste and I want more.

I also think I would like to have the experience of pregnancy and birth again.  Yeah, it was uncomfortable at times.  Yeah, it hurt like hell.  But the strength I feel everytime I watch the Kid sleeping--"See that miracle there?  I f'ing did that!"--is, again, the best sort of high.  (The Yarn Harlot wrote a post a few days ago about childbirth that made me catch my breath--"After a trip like that, you would kill for that child, and you know you can.")

There's also a part of me that feels like I might be missing out if we don't have a daughter.  (All the knitting excuse to play with Blythe dolls...picking a name from my huge "girl names" list...passing down my mitochondrial DNA.)  Even if we did decide to get pregnant again, I know there are no guarantees.  But I can't help but feel a little heart tug when I see other moms and daughters taking care of each other.  

Then again, there's another part of me that is terrified of having a girl.  ("Toddlers and Tiaras"..."16 and Pregnant"...let's take a pause while I get down on my knees and thank the heavens for giving me a baby boy....)  

Even another boy is a little scary, though.  

There are only 24 hours in a day.  Even with just the Kid, those hours feel mighty short these days.  While I love tickling baby belly and reading Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, I also want time to knit and garden and do all those other things we love to do.  

I also dream of someday sleeping for eight hours in a row again.

Not to mention that--for a reason I haven't quite put my finger on yet--I all of a sudden have this new fire to throw myself into practicing law.  (Which is convenient, since it's what pays the bills.)  With Sweet Husband also continually taking on new responsibilities at work, adding another person to take care of seems like the road to madness.

And for every one of the reasons people tell you that you "can't" have just one (some of which are overrated to begin with) there's a corresponding advantage.  I love being able to afford to send the Kid to a really great daycare, where I feel good dropping him off every day.  I like the idea of being able to travel with him when he gets a little older.  I want to be able to let him follow his interests down whatever rabbit hole they may take him without having to worry "What's the 'baby' going to do while you dig up worms for three hours?"  (OK, weird hypothetical, but you know what I mean.)

All this has been mashing around in my head lately--fueled both by people asking, and by some of the articles and books linked above--and I actually think I've finally come up with an answer that satisfies me.  Are you ready?

Before Sweet Husband and I got married, we were required to do one little "pre-marital counseling" session.  The minister who married us was one of those awesome basketball coach/algebra teacher kinds of guys you only read about in small town newspaper human interest columns.  As such, he offered very little "advice", but what he did say was gold.  On the subject of having kids, "Don't have them until you can't live without them."  It's the advice we relied on in deciding to have the Kid, and I think it will stand in good stead for the future as well.  

When are we having another one?  Well, that will happen when (and if) we can't live without one.