Tuesday, May 01, 2012

I forgot to mention that I threw a brunch party last week for a few of the women in my ward who are having babies this summer.  It was fun.  One of the women is a big Anne fan, so I made strawberry scones and raspberry cordial (straight from the Anne of Green Gables Cookbook), and a friend brought a yummy lemon cake, and I dug out an old Anne soundtrack CD.  It made me want to thrown an honest-to-goodness Anne party someday, maybe for Cookie-Nut, when she's interested.  

TMI time:  I went to the temple yesterday and thought more about the to-have-more-kids-or-not question.  It’s sure a difficult one, fraught with guilt and second-guessing.  I feel these days as though my life is more balanced than it has been in a long time, and I really value that:  I’m exercising a little, working a little, spending time with my kids, writing a little, cleaning my house a little, spending time with my husband a little.  I feel great.  I know that having another baby will throw that off, and if I have one, don’t I need to have at least two more?  So they’ll have playmates?  And then it will be at least six more years before I attain my present levels of balance, and that’s hard for me to fathom.

Then the guilt sets in.  I’m being selfish.  And of course I’d love a baby when it came.  But would I resent it too?  And then feel guilty about resenting it, because I loved the baby so much?  And then ignore it too much?  And don’t I have more time to serve and help others now (like all the babysitting I did today and will do tomorrow), because I’m freed up a little more than women with more kids?  And then there are PDaniel and Dangerboy, neither of whom handles stress particularly well.  DB needs more time with me as it is, and what would happen to that?  I need to consider them too. 

And then I think, well, if I finish my book, I will have accomplished a major goal.  Maybe then I can have one more baby, one to be cuddled and spoiled by the whole family? 

I grew up with only one other sibling.  And we were fine.  But it was what God wanted, right, because Mom just never got pregnant again naturally, and Dad didn’t really want any more kids. 

I think I came away with the feeling that it’s up to me.  And PDan (who is inscrutable when it comes to this question).  That either way, it’s OK.  But that’s hard for me to wrap my head around, with all my Mormon conditioning.  To be honest, I think I’d be happier stopping with the two kids we have now.  If it weren’t for the guilt.

Which is where the surrogacy thing comes in.  I think it would help assuage the guilt.  Don’t know if I’m right about that.

Cookie-Nut:  Mom, can you balance books on your head?  (Yes).  Like the ladies in New York?  (I had images of beautiful models practicing runway walking.)  With food on their head?  (Turns out she was getting New York mixed up with Africa…we talk a lot about travel in our family!  It’s easy to get places mixed up.)


shaunie said...

Oh, the baby question. I've been mulling that over lately as well. Ben thinks we should just be done, I feel guilty not having another (grew up w/5 other siblings!), and have decided I will wait until grad school is done to re-visit this question. I love the freedom of my family's life currently, and only wish I could peer 20 years into the future to see if I feel serious regrets about not having one more. My MIL tells me quite frequently she wishes she'd had another kid (had 3). So that doesn't help on the guilt end of the question either. I've thought about surrogacy too, but in my case I don't think it would end the guilt. Having babies is too easy for me. Good luck figuring it out!

Beth said...

The only thing I know is that the husband and wife have to agree on the question of how many children. Without it, no matter the good intentions or love, there will be difficulties. No matter what, you have time to decide what's right for your family, without placing any qualifications on your decision.