Friday, February 15, 2013

The Great Debate

This post has been swirling around my brain for awhile now, but I haven't been able to actually put it into words. Mainly, because I'm so undecided about how I really feel about the topic. But I know I can't be the only woman out there to ever have these feelings, so why not just share?

I always thought that I wanted more than one kid. This is prior to the infertility struggle. When I was blissfully unaware and "fertile" I always pictured my family with more that one child. I always said I wanted three. But two would be nice also. I really didn't want my child to be an only child. To grow up without any siblings. I wanted he or she to have someone to grow with, to fight with, to laugh with, to have someone to lean on and go to and have family holidays with long after we were gone. I just didn't want my child to be alone in the world I guess, if something were to happen to us. But with that said, I know that only children can grow up to have wonderful lives and friends who are just like brothers and sisters! So, I do not in any way think being an only child is a unfortunate thing whatsoever. I grew up with a younger brother. It was honestly great. Yeah, sure, we had our sibling rivalry moments but we also had great memories too. I did however wish I had a sister in addition to my brother. Just another girl to share in all my "girl" issues. I know, it seems like people always want what they can't have and think the grass may be greener if they had another sister/brother/more siblings/less siblings. No one seems content in the moment, but after you grow up and look back, it was just perfect as it was...

Post the infertility war (in which we finally claimed a victory!) my views on expanding our family are a little...blurred I guess...

I do know that I want another child. A sibling and life long friend for Samantha. Yet, I'm having trouble picturing it. Maybe it's a little sadness that Samantha had a twin. And her twin left us very early on in the womb. I keep thinking that I should have two sweet beautiful one year old babies. I wonder what it would have been like. Yes, busy. Yes, exhausting. But I bet it would be wonderful, too. I think about that baby now and then I wonder if it was a boy or girl. Samantha had a sibling. Once upon a time, she had a sibling. And part of me (a big part of me) feels the need to make that happen again for her.

The issue is, when? How?

I feel like I am half-hearted about it. I feel like I need to do it for her, but yet I'm not sure I am ready. I think this stems from a very raw fear of having a rough pregnancy and preterm birth again. I do get that women who have had preemies can go on to have healthy pregnancies and full term babies! We were so very lucky for Samantha to come through the NICU okay because I know that not every family is as lucky. But I will say I am pretty scarred from it all. And to be honest, Samantha's infancy was pretty rough. She is such a happy girl now, yet sleep is still a struggle. I am worried about possibly having another rough pregnancy and chasing after a very active one year old. While also caring for another infant full time in my home. It's a lot. And I do understand that there are women that do this everyday, with even more kids! Yet, it all seems too much for me. I know the foundation for all this uncertainty and stress is that I don't want a repeat of what happened with Sam. The hard pregnancy, scary and early birth, and the colic! It was REALLY hard. We did get through it and Sam is thriving now! But I'm not sure I am willing to revisit that again so soon. You see with all that's happened, it's difficult for me to envision a smooth and happy pregnancy, full term birth and easy baby who sleeps!! I know of no such thing :)

And if your big question to me is "Was it worth it?" I will say "YES!" Because it was. Samantha is the light of my life. The love in my heart. The most beautiful thing that's ever happened to us. I just....can't seem to take that next step in making the decision of when to start trying for another baby...

Time is not really on my side. I'll be 34 soon and I know that's not anything to go crazy about, but I do hear a little faint 'tick tock' in my head. We have four frozen embryos (that we are still paying for) waiting for us when we are ready. However, we all know that it is not a guarantee that all or any of those snowbabies would make the thaw. And we all know that being infertile makes it super difficult to conceive on your own. That's another thing. Am I ready for all the meds and testing and appointments and 2ww's again?

Samantha is at such a cute age. Her personality is really starting to shine now. I look at her and wonder how could I love another baby as much as I love her? And do I want to share? I want to give my all to her. Not 50%. But I feel like this is one of those things in life where you just have to jump in, if you are going to do it. And everything will figure itself out.  My husband seems more on board than I am with trying for another soon. It's been brought up in conversation a lot lately. Thinking and talking about it, does make my heart do a little pitter patter but then the fear creeps in about the "what if's."

Lately, quite a few of my friends have had pregnancy announcements and it is SO NICE to finally be truly excited for people. Not that I wasn't before, but when you are desperately trying to conceive and you hear a million pregnancy announcements, it can be taxing on the heart. I love being able celebrate their news and go through the months with them! Part of me is content just living vicariously through them. Bring on their baby appointments, ultrasounds and baby showers! I can't get enough. But am I ready myself to get back on that baby bandwagon?

Besides the fear of a scary pregnancy and preterm birth again, I have the fear of NOT getting pregnant again and all that baggage that it brings. Am I prepared for months and months of negative pee sticks again? If that's what's in store. Of course, I have Samantha's pretty face and awesome laugh to cheer me up this time around, but all those heartbroken BFN's have stayed with me. And miscarriage. What if I miscarried again? Am I ready to open up old wounds??

If I were in my 20's, I would have liked to wait until Sam was maybe in school before trying for another. In a perfect world, yes that would be my plan. But that's not an option. For me anyways. I'd like to lose a bunch of weight before getting pregnant again. There can't be anything good in getting pregnant right now, with the shape I'm in. But then of course, I'd gain all that weight back. But if it's grounds for a healthier pregnancy, then I gotta do it.

If my future second born is reading this someday, I just want you to know that despite as it may sound with my indecisiveness in this post, you are very much wanted :) Mommy is just trying to figure out the perfect timing for your entrance into our lives...

So, what do you think friends? Am I nuts? Or is all this that I'm feeling completely normal?


Babydreams2011 said...

We are having this talk ALREADY!! We decided we are going to go for it.. This is the FIRST TIME I am saying this in public (I know you're special :)) I know it's different because I don't have to carry the baby, BUT I am still terrified..

ADSchill said...

You are so normal to worry about all of this. It's been hard for you and no one wants it all to go the same way once you have had a bad experience.
The biggest thing I can tell you is to wait until you feel better and more confident about it. Maybe take time to be just with Sam, nurture yourself by becoming as healthy as you can, and find peace. You have to be ready for this, especially knowing that you have a slight chance at a hard pregnancy with a toddler. The best thing is that you have embryos frozen already so age isn't as big a problem. Your embryos are the same age as Sam, so it's just your body that needs to be prepared, not your eggs. FET's are easier so you have that...

But mostly, be ready hon. No rushing into this kind of thing. Maybe wait until Sam is stable with talking, potty training, etc. so that you will have less to deal with when you have a new baby. I know many women have it hard when they have kids so close in age and the older one isn't out of diapers. Just keep it in your mind, but don't jump without feeling sure you can handle a baby and a toddler.

I am so glad you have those embies. How wonderful to have that possibility.

Erica said...

i could have written this myself. I have struggles with this for years now and still go back and forth in my mind. having now lost two babies and having dealt with the difficult pregnancy then birth of the Twins, I too am in fear of yet another repeat. None of my three pregnancies were "smooth", none of my three pregnancies were "normal". I too worry about the boys being "only children". Even thou they have each other there still is a part of me that struggles with the fact that they may not ever have a sibling a different age. Hubs and I decided that we would actively (with medical intervention) TTC this year. Not at the place of IVF yet but willing to start from "scratch" and hope that we are able to obtain a BFP without IVF. Now... as we, who have experienced loss, know this does NOT mean that we will be bringing our baby (babies) home. Like you, to add preemies to the mix is a whole nother fear and reality.

With all the fears and "trauma" of what has lead us to become parents I feel, that its worth another try. I feel I am willing to try again and throw in everything including the kitchen sink to have a younger sibling for the Twins. I dont know what would be worse for me mentally or emotionally, to have the what ifs or to have tried and not succeeded. Either way we are going to try to move forward with baby steps this year.

No one can tell you if and when you are ready. To be honest I dont know how ready, fully ready, we were after losing Connor to start TTC again (which brought us the twins). After having the twins Hubs, my OBGYN and I decided we will give it two years prior to having this talk.

Ironically enough, I needed that two year timeline to not only parent preemies and get them to a place where I wasnt overly freaking out about their growth and development, but I think I needed that two year break of no TTC, no doctors appointments (for myself), no cycle to monitor, no sticks to dip or pee on. I needed that mental and emotional break after TTC for over 7 years at that point.

What ever you choose, whenever you choose I know you will be 100% behind your decision.



P.S. I am 31 and I have felt that I too am pressured under the "clock" to TTC again. We both know that cycling does not always equal BFP!

Faith said...

Oh hun, I think this is SO normal. My husband says he is done, done, DONE, so it is a little "easier" for me, as there is no pressure. But as more pregnancies and babies are announced, my heart goes to the place of "what ifs." What if I wanted another one, could I even conceive, would I lose it, could I handle three...and I just CAN'T deal with the doctors and such again, etc. The hard part is no one can give you is a personal journey, for you and your family to follow. I do have 2, so that is a gift...but the way they came was HARD hard hard and I grieve for the experience I did not have of doing it one at a time, to savor each moment. But that opportunity is long gone, and even if I did have another one, I'd have 2 other children to attend to. I will tell you that 2 kids is exponentially harder than 1 - there are no words to describe how much easier it is to just live life when I have only one of my children with me. And I will also tell you that you won't be giving Sam 50% of your love and attention - you just expand and give each child 100% - and it drains everything from you. When you have one, there is time to balance with other things in your life...not so much with 2 lol. But I will tell you what I told my friend who is pregnant with #2 (both through IVF:)) and is nervous about all of this - you know that warm, joyful, overwhelming love feeling when you look at Sam? Imagine feeling that times two, and for completely different reasons - that is the gift of having 2:). Good luck in whatever you decide. My only advice is this: don't do it unless you are sure (as sure as you can be) that you are ready. It isn't easy and you have to go into it with a ready heart.

J o s e y said...

Totally normal! We are definitely struggling with this as well. I'm not worried about the loving enough thing (i mean, I'm one of 5 kids, and i know my parents had enough love for all of us!), but going back into the TTC world and's scary.

Good luck deciding!

grkanga said...

You will know when and if it is time to try again. Having two children does not mean they will be best friends even if identical twins. Children are each people first and being an only or two or three or... can all be fine. It is not like years ago where singletons were isolated from other children.
For now work at fitness because that will be good no matter what re more pregnancies... fitness is for life. Good luck with figuring your path.

Rebecca said...

You aren't nuts. It is completely understandable that you are feeling that urge to have another child considering you are taking care of a friend's kid right now along with your own.

I say go for it. By the time you become full term Sam will be about two years old.

Good Timing said...

CB still half seriously and half jokingly: one and done. :p I'm still uncertain over here too so I totally understand what you're saying. It's not an easy decision and I just wanna be one of those women who are not not trying and get pregnant. Wouldn't that be nice??

C Hunter said...

This is a debate that I see all to often online. I wish it weren't so hard for some, and yet so easy and unwanted for others. pgd preimplantation genetic diagnosis

Kristin (kekis) said...

Hope it's normal because I'm already going through many of the same thought processes about adopting again. I NEVER wanted to have an only child, but now I'm having a hard time imagining another baby other than Kate. Crazy feeling, isn't it?