Soon after Zach and I got married we sat down and talked about when we wanted to have kids. We discussed various potential plans and how kids would get in the way of them, but we were both set of having a family and so decided to just set a date and stick to it. A kid will be inconvenient no matter how you time things, so might as well just pick a timeline and work the rest of life around it.
Soon after we had Donovan we started tentatively talking about when to plan for a sibling for him. He have a "date" so far but it's much less strict of a timeline. Every once in a while Zach will come home and start making comments about how nice it would be for D to have a sibling already so they could play together, how maybe we should go ahead and have a baby sooner. The other night he was even trying to teach D how to say "I want a baby."
I then remind Zach if how much f*cking work newborns are, and he goes, "Oh, yeah. Right. Maybe we should wait a bit longer..."
Truth is, I'm terrified of having another kid. But having only one is not really an option that's ok for either of us. I love having my big family and desperately want D to have at least one sibling to play with as he grows up, and to have those shared memories and experiences of our family when he's older. I also think to the future, when whatever kids we have are all grown up, and what our current reunions are with all the people and activity and chaos, and thinking about holidays where you have a single child (and his potential family) to come over seems... lonely. In the past I'd always wanted to have lots of kids, thinking of how great it'd be when they were older. And part of me still wants that, it's just I'm not sure I could survive past the early years.
I've often read articles or blog posts of parents who worried that they wouldn't be able to love their 2nd (or 3rd, etc) child as much as their existing one(s), that they couldn't possibly have enough room in their hearts to let more children in. I have no fear of that-- I know love is limitless and endless and that I will love any and all children I have deeply. What I do worry about, though, is whether I have enough energy (and sanity) for another kid. I often feel like I'm barely holding it together with one kid as it is, and it seems that these days one needs to have superhuman levels of patience and restraint in order to hold up to even basic standards for what makes A Good Mother. I know this is probably not the best time for me to fret about all this since we've been having a rough few weeks over here-- D hasn't been sleeping well at all and we've been having to get up with him at least once a night, often for a good hour or more, plus very early mornings, making us all a bit grumpy. I may not be in the most positive frame of mind right now. But a newborn would mean, among other things, signing on for another year+ of nonexistent sleep, so it's not like I'll magically feel all well-rested and radiant, seeing sunshine and roses everywhere I go (I know we could possibly end up with a baby who sleeps better than D did, but it's also just as likely we could end up with far worse).
I realize it's silly, but part of me still feels like I must be a terrible person/mom for not being excited about another baby, for actively dreading going through that first year all over again. The crazy thing is, I've always thought of myself as a fairly optimistic person, and I don't think D has been abnormally difficult as a kid... so why has it felt so hard? Am I focusing too much on the negatives? Am I having a week+ long funk that colors everything negatively? Am I missing some sort of motherhood-is-wonderful gene? Or is this how most parents feel and they just don't talk about it?
Bottom line is, we want another kid in the end-- we will not be satisfied as a family of 3. And so I suppose that at some point we'll just suck it up and take the plunge.