The intoxicating scent. Tiny fingers and toes. Non Stop snuggling. Do you ever reminisce about your pregnancies or the early days with your babies? I don’t often but every once in awhile I think about how nice it would be to add one or two more little babies to our family. I also miss my luxurious pregnancy hair and skin and guilt free pregnancy gorging. Ahh the good old days.
I can’t seem to make up my mind over whether we are done having kids. I’m 99% sure this is it. Our two kids are fourteen months apart and it’s been a wild ride. We’ve gained about sixty pounds as a couple, have duffel bags under our eyes, and are just starting to taste the freedom that comes with our children’s increased independence. It tastes good. Sometimes I sleep eight uninterrupted hours. I’m not sure I’m ready to give that up.
My husband feels the same way. We adore our kids but we are so tired. It’s hard to imagine ourselves in a home with four kids. It’s scary to think of what we would look and feel like if we were outnumbered. Two is a manageable number for the time being. One for each of us. The fact that they’re close in age is starting to become a blessing since they’re able to entertain each other for brief periods. They are best friends and it’s wonderful watching them enjoy each other’s company. We’re not sure we want to mix things up and disrupt our hard earned familial equilibrium.
There are financial considerations as well. Three or four kids to put through college means a lot less post retirement partying for me and my husband. Selfish? Maybe but I love my husband and I like a good time. If all our funds are tied up on our menagerie of children what’s left for us to enjoy when we’re old?
Kids don’t need much more than loving and responsible parents to grow into well adjusted adults but my husband and I want the financial flexibility to be able to comfortably afford the extras. Vacations, sports, and hobbies aren’t cheap and multiplying by four makes me break into hives. Life in America isn’t cheap especially for large families.
My baby fever is low grade. I’m fairly certain that four is the perfect number for us but there’s always a lingering question. My kids are wonderful and the best thing that ever happened to me. Surely more of them would be a good thing. Right? I have no idea.
When do you know for sure that you’re finished having kids? When does the baby fever end for good?
Veronica Armstrong is a photographer, blogger, and freelance writer whose stories spring from the cinderblock walls of her married graduate student apartment. You can find her on Google+ or see more of her writing and photography on her blog.