Sunday, July 19, 2015

Is This Enough?

First of all, I already know the answer. Of course it is. I look at that photo, at those beautiful boys and it's clear. I can sit in the big chair in our living room and have these little limbs strewn across me, blonde heads buried into my neck, big brown eyes crinkling as they laugh at one of my silly jokes, and I know, this is all I need. Truly. But then sometimes there's this tiny little twinge in my heart- an extra beat maybe, when I think about having another baby.

I used to want six kids. I dreamed of this. I imagined Hank and I living on a farm somewhere (ignoring that I'm basically scared of most animals) raising our children. I would homeschool (I would never homeschool), grow our own food (I kill half of the plants that enter our house), and live our life simply. Oh, dreams. What funny things they can be as you grow into your reality.

So we had one child. And as he got older I said, "Okay, for us, six is insane. Maybe four. Yes, four." And we had another. And I saw how that went. And I said, "Okay four is insane. Maybe three. Yes, three." And that baby grew and grew and more and more of his baby-ness fell away. And now that baby is turning two and the other is turning five and I look at this life and I wonder what is next.

Do I have a hole in my heart that yearns to be filled with another child? Is that what this feeling is? Do we grow our family one more time? I'm certain the answer is yes, and I've been thinking about it often. But not now. I'm pretty sure about that. But then we ask ourselves, when? When does life slow down enough where I would say okay, this is the time?

It's weird to be at the end of this part of our lives. One more baby. Just one. It seems like yesterday that we were at the beginning, pregnant with Henry and imagining what life would be like once he arrived. Then I can flash forward to almost two years ago, when Charlie was born. Two boys sitting there with me on the hospital bed. One wrapped up in a blanket nursing, the other snuggled up next to me, looking with awe at his new baby brother.

What a gift it is to know when something is your last. The last time you're pregnant. The last time you have that first moment with your new baby. The last time you give a first bath. The last first word. I've already promised myself that when the time comes to try for that sweet baby, and if we are able to have another, that I won't spend my time mourning everything as it passes. That's no way to enjoy a beautiful season of life. Being in the now will be so important, and that's where I want to be- where I need to be. So we will see what's next for us, see what's next for this little family of ours. I have babies on the brain lately, but there's a pause button there too, and a little thought in my mind saying "Not now, but maybe soon." We'll see, we'll see.


  1. I also have two boys. They are two years apart. We waited a little bit longer to have our third. I nearly died of shock when I held the ultrasound up to the light and peeked at it and say a capital G. (We had agreed to keep the result in the envelope for a week until my husband's family came to visit. But just two hours later. . .) But needless to say, when I saw her little face across the operating room, it was all I could do to not weep out loud. Oh how we love our little Wren Margaret. And oh how we love our family of five. You'll know. You'll know when the time is right. And you'll know when your quiver is full. You'll just know.

    1. I just wanted to say that I really liked the way you phrased that "you'll know when your quiver is full". My boyfriend owns a gun/ archery shop so - I'm quite certain you just gave me my line for more kids/dogs or for when we're 'done'. thanks ;)

  2. I am often going back and forth wondering if I will have another child.
    But I'm 30 now and my two daughters are 11 and 6. I've been a single mother for 5 years, although their father is still a great friend and regular in our lives, and if I'm honest I just love doing this on my own too much and our lives are great right now.
    If I was to find someone new and have another baby it'll probably be when I'm on the wrong side of 35, when my youngest is 12. I just dont think I can do that.
    It'd be wonderful to raise one more child with all the knowledge I have gained since first becoming a parent at 19 but I also know I wouldn't be able to just have one morw child, it would probably be two as I wouldn't want it growing up alone. I see my girls as they play- its not as often now as emma is five years older, but they do interact and play and its lovely for them and Holly has an older sister she can go to when she needs to.
    But with the girls getting older life gets easier. We can do things together with so much more ease
    I fear another child would take that away

    Ohhh the dilemmas!

  3. We're total blog twins today. We've been having the yes, no, if not now, then when, debate on baby #3 and it's hard decision to time out! I wish I had great advice for you, but we're in the same boat!


  4. We are in that mode right now, too. We are always looking and wondering what could be next...all the while, completely aware that this current moment feels so, so good. Would we ruin it? Or would it just be the most amazing, awesomesauce thing?
    I feel you so much!

  5. This is beautiful, Danielle. Charlie has gotten so BIG!

  6. We're in that same boat right now too. While I've pretty much JUST given birth to our second daughter, we're already thinking about whether or not we want to stay a family of four or become a family of five some day (not too soon). It's a tough decision; we had originally thought three kids would be great, but we feel so blessed with the two perfectly amazing girls we have we wonder if we're okay with just having two.

  7. This just popped up on my Facebook feed and I thought of you :) xoxo

  8. My last is almost 15-months-old now, and I feared that I would cry from the time she was born until the day I died, so mournful over every "last" we would experience with her. But two things have happen that prevented that. First, she is a third - life with three children is simply too busy to be too sad. At the same time we're experiencing all these "lasts," we're still in the midst of experiencing so many "firsts" with our older children. And in my opinion, it would take away from the joy we are experiencing with them if we spent too much time dwelling on those bittersweet lasts. The second thing that happened is that I simply chose to focus more on the positives that come. Last time changing a poopy diaper? Yes, please! Last time I have to wash an impossible-to-clean sippy cup? Yes please! As the children grow, there are many things to look forward to - dinner conversations with all three kids, family vacations that we can all appreciate, more dates with the hubs. I chose to happily look forward to all the good times that have yet to come, rather than dwelling on all the things that we've "lost" by deciding this would be our last. Of course there are times that I feel a bit of sadness (when our breastfeeding journey came to a close) but "perception is everything" and it's not too difficult to simply shift my thinking a bit and pull myself out of it. More and more everyday I learn to live in the NOW, to enjoy THIS season of life (whatever that may be). It goes a long way to creating a happy life, for both myself and my family.

  9. I have two (a boy and a girl), but before having kids I always thought I wanted four. Then the year our daughter turned two, we just didn't feel quite ready. We would talk about wanting more, but the timing just didn't seem right. When she turned three...we were still happy being a family of four. Waiting that year out made us realize that we were really, really happy being a family of four. We had a good flow and balance going on at that point in our lives. We just knew that what we already had felt so right. Part of me was scared that having the third might upset the balance that we had in our home and I no longer questioned it. I just knew...we just knew...and that year that our daughter turned three...we decided that hubby should have a vasectomy instead. Our family of four just felt so complete and I couldn't be happier about our decision. If you're questioning it...maybe just wait it out for a bit! You have time!!!

  10. I really love this post. I have one 18 month old, Hugo, and although we aren't planning on getting pregnant for a few months, I just have a feeling we'll have another boy. We've always said we want 2 or 3, but for us it begs the question- if we stopped at two and had boys, would we feel sad that we didn't have a daughter? (I am one of four girls in my family). I often think about when my body will biologically want to stop having kids. Will our family be complete and then I have two or three more years of yearning for more? ;)

  11. So, I've been reading your blog for awhile, and my first though when scrolling down and seeing the picture of your boys was, "Holy moly, look how big they are!"

    This is a really great post. Time goes really fast doesn't it?

  12. Ah I love this, I think the same so often. We have a four year old and twin 18 month old boys, I always wanted three children but we weren't prepared for twins and I still feel like I want a good few years! Practically though I'm not sure we could, but does that feeling of wanting another ever go away? I'm not sure. Your boys are looking so grown up in this photo, beautiful xx

  13. Three kids is great! There's enough to make it a group but still few enough to be mobile. I'll let you know how 4 is in a few months :)

  14. I especially love that last paragraph about not mourning while trying to be present in the situation. Each day is a gift that we should be grateful for. And it seems like you've got that understanding done pact. Your boys are both lucky to have you! When the time is right for the next one, you'll know it in your heart :) wishing you the best!

  15. I have a four year old boy. During the first two years my husband and I were pretty sure we were done. There was so much love and we both felt so complete as a family of three, honestly, we didn't feel the need to try for another one. but then we realised that just wasn't true. while life with one kid is relatively 'easy going' and we've enjoyed travel, time for personal growth and other opportunities that would be hard for us to experience with more than one child, over a year ago we decided we wanted another one. but it hasn't happened yet and I'm losing faith. During this time my heart breaks at the thought of not being able to give him a sibling and for not trying sooner.I feel I have so many regrets…it's so hard to believe that it might never happen. All those firsts and lasts. But I've decided to slowly fight back and am determined to really live my life with my family without thinking about what if because It's draining. I don't want to live with any more regrets. i don't want to mourn anymore. If you feel you do want another one, just go for it! If it happens, it happens. If not, no regrets! We tried. We did our best. Much love to you x