There’s the near daily discussion between Mommy and I about the possibility, in the future, at least a year from now, of us possibly trying to have another baby. Yes, that would mean a younger brother or sister for you.
We can easily think of good reasons we would want you to be an only child. We can also easily think of good reasons for you to have a sibling.
As far as why you should have a sibling, there’s one weird reason that keeps popping up in my head; one that Mommy has never mentioned.
So I guess I have to file it in the “Daddy’s Deep Thoughts” folder. Here it is:
I think about all the potential siblings who would never be born if we just stopped with you.
It just seems weird to only have one more. Why not two more? Why not five? Why not ten?
At some point for financial, logistical, and other practical reasons, that “one more kid” finally becomes one too many.
How am I supposed to know who the final little brother or sister is supposed to be?
Half of me is wired like Jim Bob Duggar, while the other half is wired like every parent in the history of the world who was content with their decision to only have one child.
I mean, to a certain degree, God leaves it up to Mommy and I to decide how many more lives to bring into the existence of this world.
Really? God is okay with my input in that decision?
No matter how many (or few!) brothers or sisters you end up having, or not having at all, much of that responsibility falls on your parents.
We have less than a decade to decide…for us, for you, and for all the siblings who will never exist.
The day after Thanksgiving, Mommy and I had to go work, so your Nonna and Papa came up to visit and take care of you.
When I got home, Nonna told me how you kept telling her, “Mama and Daddy go to doctor.”
These days, you have random words floating around your head at any given moment, so you are often spitting out sentences that, while they make sense, aren’t actually true at all.
No, Mommy and I haven’t gone to the doctor; specifically, we haven’t gone there to confirm a pregnancy or get a sonogram. That’s because Mommy’s not pregnant.
But you sure had Nonna wondering.
Jack, you definitely may be an only child. That’s something Mommy and I have been very open about with everyone.
We don’t think it should be weird to only have one kid. In fact, it’s a wonderful and respectable idea.
However, I am willing to admit, now that you’re 2… I’m not completely opposed to the idea of having another kid, like I basically was just a couple of months ago.
No offense, but you’re a lot easier to take care of now. I’m not feeling overwhelmed or slightly angry like I was before.
It also has to do with me feeling more secure at my job as I am getting HR certified. It has to do with Mommy and I getting closer to being out of debt. And it has to do with neither of us being stressed out quite as much.
It’s a decision that only my wife and I can make for ourselves, yet we’re open to hearing input from the free world.
For the past several months now, we have been leaning towards the decision to only have one child. It’s not the stress of parenthood getting the best of us. After all, at 18-months old, our son is pretty low-maintenance.
He’s the best son we can ask for and we’re so blessed to have him. So… why overdo it and have another kid?
I love the idea of only having our son. We can pour all of our energy and time into this one special person.
Whatever interests and passions he wants to pursue, we can support him fully.
No conflicts with our other kids’ schedules. No fighting in the back seat on the drive to Florida for family vacation.
Less financial worries. Less stress on our marriage.
As we’ve talked to couples who decided to only have one kid, they share no regrets about it.
I admit: I want to be part of the cool “One Kid Only” club.
As I try to sort through this, I gather reasons why we should consider having another child:
Who will take care of us when we’re old? What if something happens to our son and then we have no children at all? Wouldn’t it be sad for our son if he had no siblings to grow up with?
While I can continue to think of more Debbie Downer questions like these, I really don’t see how answering them will change how I feel:
I want to raise an only-child. I believe I will be feel completely fulfilled with just one kid.
Right now I am 31 years old and my wife almost is. Biologically, we’re still good for several more years.
So how long do we wait before we know to go ahead and make it official? How long before I go “get the surgery” and I can move forward as the proud parent of one child?
Yes, I know: If my parents would have made the same decision then my sister wouldn’t be here. Neither would my wife, who is 9 of 10 kids.
I want my wife to get her “mating’s worth” out of me. That’s important. And it would be one thing if I was simply telling my exclusive thoughts on this, but I’m not.
In fact, though I’ve been kicking this blog idea around for months now, I didn’t actually plan to write or publish it.
But my wife convinced me otherwise. This is something we both feel the same way about, yet want to be sure about.
This can ultimately only end in one of three ways that I can think of:
A) We delay up to about 4 more years before I get the surgery.
B) We choose to have another kid.
C) We surprisingly get pregnant as we try to figure this out.
Okay, passing the mic to you now. The two of us want your insight. Any advice and direction you’re willing to share?
My wife and I can’t relate to the concept of “trying” to have kids.
At the very beginning of 2010, we decided that we might consider starting our family around November of that year. Instead, our son Jack was born, not conceived, in November 2010.
(I’ll spare you the mysterious details on how exactly that happened ahead of schedule.)
Meanwhile, our very good friends Dave and Karen were living the opposite version of that story. For Christmas 2009, Dave told Karen that all he wanted for Christmas was to be a dad. Accordingly, she very much wanted to start having children as well.
But it hasn’t been easy. They have done everything in their power to get pregnant; from cutting edge new technology to alternative medicine. None of it has been effective.
I know it’s been an emotional journey for them. If there has been one thing Jill and I have prayed more for on a daily basis, it has been for Dave and Karen to be able to have a child.
When I think of the biggest-hearted people in my life, they both instantly come to mind.
In fact, they took us into their home twice (a total of over 6 months) as we were moving to Alabama and then again when we moved back to Nashville. Interestingly, when we brought Jack “home” from the hospital, it was their house we came back to. (In the picture above, they are holding the newborn Jack.)
They have sacrificed greatly for us; amidst the ease of us being able to have a child.
And this whole time, they’ve acted as if it was their privilege to do so.
Dave and Karen recently returned from a 2 week in vitro fertilization session in Colorado. We didn’t ask them about it because we knew they would let us know if it was successful.
Yesterday my wife Jill saw that she had missed a call from Karen. This video that Karen posted on her Facebook wall pretty much sums it all up:
It just so happened they we found out their wonderful news as we were watching a Season 3 episode of Lost called “Greatest Hits” where Charlie learns how and when he will die; he must sacrifice his life so that his girlfriend and her son can be rescued from the island.
In the hours leading up to his death, he writes out a greatest hits list of his entire life to give to his girlfriend for the moment she would learn of his death: The #1 “hit” was when he met her.
So that’s what got me thinking about this “Greatest Hits of Parenthood” list for myself.
My list so far would be A) Jack’s safe arrival into this world, B) the fact that we has blonde-hair and blue eyes though it doesn’t make much sense when you look at his parents, C) how at 15 months he started recognizing me as his dad and choosing to want to hang out with me even if my wife was in the room too, and D) Jack surviving his febrile seizure.
But never in my life have I ever felt so much joy because of a blessing in someone else’s life.
In fact, finding out that Dave and Karen are having a baby is definitely included now on my “greatest hits” list of being a parent.
And now they get to start their own greatest hits…