If money/health/age weren’t an issue, how many kids would you want to have?
March 30, 2010
To me, three is the perfect number
I would want three. I’m one of three so naturally I always thought that was the perfect number. Sure, my sisters and I fought a lot when we were little and I suffered some serious sibling rivalry (I still can’t get over Christmas 1987 when Meghan got a scooter from Santa, even though I was the one who asked for it…) but, just like my mother always said, my sisters and I turned out to be best friends. We talk/text/email/BBM each other every single day. Several times a day. Yes, it’s often one of us talking smack about one of the others (the classic is when Meghan calls me to complain about something Melissa did and then Melissa beeps in to complain about Meghan—as the middle child I’m often, well, in the middle), but we couldn’t love each other more. Or be happier/more grateful to have each other. And I want my kids to experience that unbreakable bond too. To know that no matter what, someone always has their back. Two someones, preferably.
With my sisters--my best friends--at, what else, a cancer event...
So, I always imagined that I’d have three kids, but then reality (AKA, cancer) hit and, well, life doesn’t always turn out as planned. But maybe it can. Since having Nora, everyone says to me, “Oh, you have one of each, now you can be done!” But I don’t really see it that way. I’m thrilled that I have two kids--especially after having cancer--but, if anything, their different sexes makes me want to have one more, not be done. Of course whether to have a third child is a HUGE decision for anyone and even more so for me. Because of my disease I can’t just let God/the fates/mother nature decide this one. I have to be very careful and very calculated about the whole thing (I can't get pregnant while taking my cancer drug). And there are so many variables to consider. My friend, Ellen, wrote an awesome blog post on the topic recently and her fears and concerns (and desires) got me wondering about my own. We’re not exactly thinking of doing this tomorrow, but we wouldn’t want to wait years either. And I think it's a good idea to start the dialogue sooner rather than later. So here’s a quick look at what’s currently on my pro/con list.
Reasons (some big, some small) that we might be done:
- My cancer—not sure it’s the best idea to go off my drug for a third 9-month stint. And I’d be lying if part of me didn’t think I’d be pressing my luck. (But, before anyone jumps all over me for this, my oncologist does not think it would be a horrible idea at all.)
- We only have three proper bedrooms in our house and, while there is definitely room to add on, there isn’t exactly money to do it. At least right now….
- I don’t know how we’re going to afford to put two kids through college let alone three. Ditto all the other expenses.
- We have two healthy (at least so far—knock on wood) kids and the thought of adding a third child to worry about from conception till forever seems a little daunting from a mental/emotional standpoint.
- Because having two isn’t always easy and I imagine three would be even less so (understatement). When we have good days, we think, yeah, let’s have another. When we have bad days we think, OMG, can you imagine if we had another? I can't even fathom what traveling would be like with three kids....
Disney with one was hard (mentally, physically, financially), would it even be possible with three?
Reasons we would want a third:
- I would love for Alex to have a brother or for Nora to have a sister. (This is what I meant above when I said that their different sexes actually make me want another.)
- More kids to take care of us--and each other--when Nick and I are old and gray.
- I love big families and big family functions. I’m hosting an Easter brunch/egg hunt on Sunday for 30—my aunts, my cousins, their kids, etc. We’re all incredibly close and I want that for my kids. A friend of mine who has two and wants more said one of her reasons is that when she and her husband are retired empty-nesters, they’ll want as many kids and grandkids around as possible on holidays, Sundays, vacations, etc. And I kind of agree.
- Nora is so easy that we don’t have any of that “but newborns are so hard” angst to get over.
- Along the same lines, I had a super easy birth experience with Nora. It was honestly like it never happened at all. I would actually welcome the drug-free challenge again (knowing that I can always get the epi…if there’s time!)
- I don’t mind being pregnant. To be honest, I’d love another nine months of not having to suck in my stomach.
- I think I’m a good mom and Nick is a good dad and we make a really good parenting team and, well, why not spread the love?
This one is a piece of cake so far (which could be clouding our judgment)
How many kids do you want? How many do you have? What factored into your decision making process? And, do you think I’m crazy to want a third?