Monday, March 1, 2010

I don’t even know what to title this post as I can’t believe I am posting this on an infertility blog

It is late. Or early. Depending upon how you look at the clock. I should be working or sleeping. But I can do neither. My mind is stuck. It has wrapped itself around a compelling feeling. Something that feels life altering to me – the proverbial fork in the middle of the road, if you will.

The thought is this: What is Missy is my only (live) child?

What if we choose to have her as an only child? Of course, my body may decide that for me. But what if we consciously hold up our hands and say, “That’s it. We’re done”?

Please don’t think this is frustration talking. We’ve been TTC#2 for just a few months.

It may be a little bit of fear talking. I don’t “do” pregnancy well: daily vomiting and extreme tiredness for the first four months; white-knuckled scans; a knee-knocking CVS due to my advanced maternal age and other factors; more daily tiredness for the last 2 months; and the biggest fucking swollen ankles you can imagine, which is not a good look on someone who just barely tops 5’1”. All worth it now that Missy has blessed our lives but…

…that was when I didn’t have a willful, spirited toddler and a growing business that needed constant tending. Just thinking about the prospect of keeping those balls in the air makes me heave a deep sigh of how-the-hell-will-I-manage-it-all-?

Then, it gets even more selfish. The skiing. The mountains. The latent yoga practice I yearn for desperately. The local, off-the-grid food movement that I ascribe to. The will to travel internationally as much as possible to experience different cultures. Could I do it all with two? Do I want to go back to baby-baby mode when my “baby” has already started to potty train?

Granted, my past experience with an infant was with that of a high-maintenance one. Missy is one of the great loves of my life. She has a sparkling personality and a wonderful spirit. But, good Lord, that child is strong willed. “Like her mother,” cowboy - and my parents - would likely say. It is true the apple does not fall far from the tree. But between the sleep – she still takes over an hour to get down and that is after bath, milk & books – and the I-must-be-attached-to-momma-at-all-times first year… I just don’t know if I have it in me.

Yes, I am sure #2 would be quite different from Missy. But I feel like I am still recovering from her babyhood and staring down the barrel of raising a spirited toddler.
And my high-needs baby recovery time and biological clock are nearly at an impasse. Trust me on this.

I did a quick survey of my acquaintances & friends who share similar interests: skiing, travel, etc. Having a single child occurs at a pretty high rate. I look at their lives and how we want to live ours. I do the mental math of adding one more seat on an international flight to Portillo or Wanaka and I do a reality check. I KNOW! It’s horrible to quantify a child like that. Really. How fucking cold. But still. I do.

I don’t know what to do or how to tackle this or where this strong feeling even came from.

So, on this one…on this major one. I think I am going to turn to my yoga teachings and my infertility training: I’m just going to sit with it for a little while. Even though it is mightily uncomfortable. I need to sit with it and try to feel it both ways.

It seems like too big a decision not to.


Life in Eden said...

Funny, I've been thinking about some of the same things, and I know how you feel. Before the recent miscarriage, I was more frightened about having another than excited. And I thought, how can I feel this way!? How is it that what I wanted more than anything, is now terrifying? And it the financial aspects totally played into it. And the exhaustion. And, and, and ...

I'm still not certain exactly how I feel. I have an Rx on the shelf, unfilled. But I have a feeling it won't sit there long. Hoping you are able to find a comfortable place. Take your time. (((you)))

Caro said...

Sounds like sitting with it is the best plan. Good luck.

Coffeegrl said...

I have to confess that finding ourselves unexpectedly pregnant (yes we were actively trying but after going for 14 months with no conception the first time around I never expected it would happen so relatively quickly the 2nd) I have been scared and anxious a lot. When we initially started to think about actively trying for child number 2, my daughter was a pretty easy-going child, we'd gotten past the worst of the sleep issues and I suddenly found myself in that "honeymoon" phase you sometimes get with an infant. But things have gotten tougher as she gets older and more independent and willful (all good things!) and I find myself longing to go back to work in some way. Needless to say, I'm conflicted and have been for much of this pregnancy. I also chalk up all the extra emotion and anxiety to trying to manage pregnancy and a toddler - not an easy thing for me. Ultimately what I guess I'm saying is that sitting with this idea is a wonderful idea. I think I wish we'd done that more. Esp. as we now look at the cost of that 4th airplane ticket with some frequency (should we want to maintain our relationships with both of our families in Japan and the US). Best of luck as you work toward this very difficult and very personal decision.

L said...

I, too, want to travel and explore/experience the world with my child(ren). My thought was this: if you were the child, would you want to be exploring the world with only adults? I think two children is ideal for seeing the world. Yes, it costs more, but I think the quality of life with two children is more to my liking.

S was an "easy" child, so I worry that #2 will be difficult, but it's a risk I am willing to take.