I have wanted to be a mother since I was a little girl. Ā I can remember fussing over and nurturing my dollies even in preschool. Ā Of course, real children are nothing like my plastic doe-eyed dolls, but that’s another story.
When my husband and got married nine years ago, I wanted to start a family right away. Ā Life had other plans though, and we picked up and moved 3000 miles from the place we met, where we fell in love and eventually got married. For us, the first year of marriage was the hardest and, whether it was partly because of the big move or not, we had a lot of trouble readjusting to our new titles of husband and wife. Ā It took another two years for us to be in a place where we felt secure and certain enough (as if that really exists) to start a family.
That’s when life laughed at our plans again. Month after month went by and I wasn’t getting pregnant. Since we were both young and in good health we waited the requisite year before seeing a specialist. That’s when we were told we had “unexplained infertility.” There wasn’t much to do besides keep trying. Ā Another 12 months later I finally saw those two blue lines I had been waiting for.
Nine months after peeing on that stick, I was cold-cocked by new motherhood. It was a stressful time in our house. My son was colic, my husband was incredibly busy at work and I was in over my head as a stay-at-home mom. Despite all the snapping and the fights, our marriage grew stronger — exponentially so after the first 18 months of parenting.
Wide-eyed and happy at the glimpse of the light at the end of the tunnel we decided weād start trying for a second child. Our experience told us it could take a year or maybe two to get pregnant, which is why I was blown away when I saw a positive test less than six weeks later.
Our second baby had a much more even temperament and it often made me think that having two kids was actually easier than having one. Of course now that they are two and four-years old and fight regularly, Iām not so sure āeasierā is the right word. I can stand whining, picky eaters, and the messes ā but itās the fighting I hate. And not just because it makes me have to get up and go see whatās happening in the other room.
Marriage and parenthood are not institutions for the faint of heart, the weak-willed or those with easy gag reflexes. That’s why I feel very fortunate to say through every phase my husband and I have gotten better as parents and closer as partners.