“I don’t know” I reply, “Maybe sometime… maybe never.”
Maybe, none of your business, I feel like saying. To me, having another baby is such a personal decision and it’s not something I take lightly. It often feels borderline invasive that so many people (who aren’t close friends or family) are interested in the shape of my family unit. What feels even stranger is that so many people I’ve encountered vehemently disagree with parents making the informed decision to have only one child, no matter what that family’s circumstances or how that family came to be in the first place.
While we haven’t shut the door completely on more children, at this time, focusing my energy on the child I already have seems the most responsible decision I can make for my family, not just for me.
Having babies wasn’t something I had reached the point of wanting (or even considering) when it happened and the adjustment period wasn’t easy. I am beyond grateful for my daughter who is becoming the most amazing inspiration I ever could have dreamed up, but in truth, I am really just scratching the surface of being able to enjoy her. I’ve fully embraced being a mother, but that transition was hard fought. Mountains of financial stress and total mind-fuck of being a parent made the first two years an uphill battle. It’s taken me what felt like an eternity to feel any sense of ease and sometimes those moments are still fleeting.
But having a brilliant child who hugs and kisses me a hundred times a day and loves life so much is incredible. It has taught me about who I am and how to be a better, more meaningful human being in this world. But that doesn’t mean I’m ready to do it all again, even if it means my daughter may grow up without a sibling. And I really think that’s okay.
Plenty of people will say there’s something wrong with that and that children should have a brother or a sister to play and learn to share with, that it’s selfish to have only one child. But I really don’t see that. In my mind, it would be far more selfish to have more children that I didn’t know I wanted. I imagine my kids would end up feeling the impact of that far more than if my daughter was brought up an only child with friends and two parents who love her unconditionally. To me, making the best decision with the information you have at hand is the best thing you can do. To have more kids, just to fit some picture perfect mold of what many believe makes the perfect family, would be doing my daughter a huge disservice.