• Fri, Feb 3 2012

I Had ‘New Baby’ Ache Until Both My Kids Got Sick At The Same Time

two sick kids“Surprise!” screamed the subject heading. I already knew what the email from my sister-in-law and brother-in-law was going to say, but I was still so excited to see it. They were having a baby. I was ecstatic for them, of course, but there was an odd twinge of envy that I was so not expecting to feel. I didn’t want another kid, did I? How could I? I already have the best family, replete with husband, 4-year-old boy and 19-month-old girl. I had even recently dreamed that I’d had another baby and tried to leave him at the hospital. So why was I jealous that my sister-in-law was pregnant?

I thought maybe it was just a passing feeling, like dying my blonde hair red. Something I think about for a second and then nix because I know it won’t suit me. But no. This feeling was sticking around. Trips to the pharmacy became slow strolls through the baby section past the bottles I no longer needed, reverently touching the tiny pacifiers and bibs, giggling when I saw the breast pads. What the hell was happening to me?

I began to long for those magical three months of smelling my newborn’s deliciously sweet head and cradling a soft-as-velvet tiny body next to my breast. But then I thought, Magical? Was I insane? Had I completely forgotten the frantic juggling of two young kids, almost zero sleep, and leaky boobs? The longing ache for another baby was clear proof that I had lost both my memory and my mind.

I’m not yet 39, but I feel like I’ve aged 10 years since I had my daughter. The long months of broken sleep, bending down to pick her up, reaching this way and that to get her into her car seat and letting her ride on me like a horse have often made me feel like a 60-year-old. My back aches, my knees creak and I can hide snacks in the bags under my eyes. And getting two kids to various appointments and programs, and rushing to get my son from school while lugging a diaper bag, stroller and toddler through the daycare doors at the end of a long day can leave me totally frazzled.  How could I possibly consider adding a third kid to that mix when I only have two hands?

And like one tends do when they want to get pregnant, I began noticing swollen bellies and watching the women with three kids who always had a smile on their faces and a spring in their step. I didn’t quite have the same warm and fuzzy feelings about being pregnant again because really, I’ve been there and done that. Although there’s nothing like that plus sign on a pregnancy test, it wasn’t the pregnancy I wanted. I didn’t have babies anymore – and I wanted a soft, sweet, tiny baby to care for again.

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  • Ellen

    Not often moved to write, but that was one helluva post. I’m 100% with you.

  • NotThumper

    I may have to keep reading and re-reading your post in order to quell my baby ache! I’m almost 28 and my daughter is 7.5 months old but I am already starting to ache for another. I swore I wouldn’t get pregnant again due to the difficulty I had with my first pregnancy.
    Fertility treatment (1 thank goodness!), rough pregnancy, emergency c-section due to rapid onset pre-e at 34 weeks…not to mention massive weight/water gain (my poor 5’4″ former 120lb frame went to 213lb though it was mostly water-I have lost most of it, just a few lbs left surprisingly…).
    It all left me feeling very negative about the whole experience despite always wanting a few kids. Now inexplicably I have that familiar ache…despite being traumatized, but like I said, your post might just be the antidote! ;)

    PS, hope everyone wound up ok and they weren’t sick for too long.

  • Becki

    Love it!!!!

  • Samantha Bailey

    Thanks so much, everyone, for your wonderful comments. NotThumper–what a ride to mommyhood you went through! Whatever you decide will be the right thing. It’s amazing how short our memories are!

    • NotThumper

      Thanks. Who am I kidding though, I know I’ll have another someday. The husband and I make cute kids, we should at least have a matched set. ;)

  • Melissa

    I have a two toddlers, my son is almost 3 1/2 and my daughter is just over 2. I get the baby blues bad sometimes. I have always said I wanted four children but what the heck do you really know when you don’t have children! Now I think I really want just one more. But I go so back and forth on it. I wonder if I’m really up for the challenge of three kids! I came from a three child family (all girls) and a part of me thinks I want another to give my son a brother or my daughter a sister. I loved and love having the sister bond I have with mine. But not only that, I want a large family and by today’s standards three is large. My sister-in-law having only two says it’s lonely, my mother on the other hand says three changes everything!! Guess we’ll just have to wait and see what God has in store for us…