“How many children do you have?”
“One – our daughter – Lovegirl.”
“So, when are you having the next one?”
“The next what?”
“Oh, I think we’re through.”
“Well, that’s mighty selfish of you.”
And that’s the way the conversation usually goes. Friends, family members, coworkers, strangers. Their uninvited inquiries into the status of my womb never generates the answer they were hoping for.
I think we will only have one child. There. I said it. When I was pregnant with Lovegirl I always anticipated that we would add at least one more child to our family. And then I had her. And I love her.
But And one is enough for us.
- Lovegirl will likely go to private school. We can do this for one, not so much for two.
- We like to travel. This is easier, and more affordable, with one.
- I’m not near any of my immediate family, and don’t feel like I’ve got a strong support system here. My friends and in-laws are cool, don’t get me wrong, but in a pinch, I feel like it’s just me. And Smoochy. But the man now drives trucks for a living and is rarely here. I semi-joked to a friend the other day that I’m a married, single mother.
- I’m not sure I want to do the new baby thing again. The other day I was thinking how much easier life was when she was new – she stayed put, didn’t fuss a lot, and most of her life’s issues could be solved with a 10-minute nursing session. On the other hand, I now have a child who can tell me what’s wrong, sleeps through the night without requiring a 2 a.m. feeding and no longer requires her diaper fix. I like it. I like it a lot.
- I honestly don’t know if I have the energy to have another. Is that selfish of me? Probably. But I think it is better to acknowlege and accept this fact and do a good job raising one than to have another just to succumb to societal pressures and expectations and do a half-ass job of raising two.
Of course, time and circumstances change a lot of things, so who knows – in a few years, I may be sitting here journaling with a newborn on my lap. But for now, we’re good – my husband, my daughter, and I. My lovely family of 3.