the smell of my desperation has become a stench

Go forth and multiply

When my sister was pregnant for the fourth time she gave my mother a frame with places for five pictures as a christmas gift. I was standing directly next to my mother when she opened it, and I noticed before she did that the first three mats in the frame corresponded to my sister’s first three children, and the other two mats indicated that two more were on their way. At first my mother thought that her oldest daughter had miscalculated the size of her own family, and as she was pointing this out the frightening reality hit her like a brick in the face, “But you don’t have . . . THIS DOES NOT MEAN WHAT I THINK IT MEANS.” The frame was my sister’s creative way of saying that she was trying to populate the Earth by herself.

My sister’s house has always been a suburban recreation of Lord of the Flies, except her version has always had a little more cannibalism. When my mother processed the fact that my sister was going to be bringing twin boys into the mix her face became a physical manifestation of The World Ending. It’s not that she wasn’t joyous about the prospective new additions, it’s that she knew one would be hard enough. But two? TWO MORE? JUST IMAGINE THE BLOOD SPATTER.

My sister’s twins are now five years old, and since their birth she has been harassing me to do my part in expanding the family. I always thought I would have three or more kids. I guess it’s because I have two siblings myself, and that’s the kind of family I’ve always wanted. But after the experience I’ve had with this first one, with my precious Screaming Leta, I’m not so sure I’m the type of person who could handle three kids. And that has been hard to accept. I see other mothers who have that many kids, and deep inside I am envious of them simply for the fact that they seem to be handling it even if they think they aren’t handling it at all.

I am frequently asked if Jon and I plan to have any more kids, and the answer to that is long and winding:

I finally feel like I have a handle on the responsibilities of this family, like I know what I’m doing, like the role of Mother makes sense. Finally my instincts have kicked in at the right frequency, and I don’t go around all day thinking what is this creature that runs through my house and why won’t it stop making that noise?

Only recently have I started to have that baby itch again, have I wanted to put the shiny, bald heads of infants in my mouth. I think that’s a good sign because it means I’ve been able to forget a little bit of the sting of those first six months and am now at a point where I would even consider going through it again. I’m the one at the neighborhood party grabbing the babies off their mothers’ laps because the urge to bite their nubbly ears is too overwhelming. Wanting to eat babies is a good indication that I have healed.

But the decision to have another baby is so complicated. What if when we try it doesn’t work? What if when we try I end up like my sister, pregnant with twins? Can we afford to have another child? Because now our insurance is such that we have to cover the cost of the delivery. Is our house big enough? How will I continue working and supporting my family if anything goes wrong?

Add to that my history of postpartum depression and the fact that I am now more likely to to experience it again because I did the first time around. Am I ready for that? Is Jon? Should I even risk putting him or Leta though that again? Should I risk destroying the peaceful home that I’ve spent the last two years building?

I don’t know.

  • Scheherazade

    2006/05/18 at 9:41 am

    Sounds like a scary decision. My sister and I are seven years apart – they couldn’t really afford her (I don’t think) but they got through it. If you really want it, you will too.

  • Antennapaedia

    2006/05/18 at 9:44 am


    So, here’s two cents from a 26 year old with no kids and no plans to have them. If you do decide to have more kids, PLEASE don’t let it be because you don’t want Leta to be An Only Child ™. I know so many parents (most of my friends are at the same had-one-kid-do-we-want-to-do-this-again? stage) that are of the opinion you simply HAVE to have more children, because MY GOD, if they’re An Only Child, the little bastard will grow up maladjusted and never learn to share! or, you know, something equally irrational. I’m biased, I’m sure, since I was an only child but I went to Montessori school and learned to share and got to college and did fine with roommates and while I won’t say I went forth into the world with NO baggage, none of it was because I didn’t have siblings.

    Anyway, I guess my point is “Only child” is not the dirty word so many parents seem to think it is. If you decide to call it quits at Leta, she will be a fine and dandy little person no matter what and you’ll have the time and ability to give her the attention she needs.

  • sasha

    2006/05/18 at 9:44 am

    Yeah, I always thought I’d be a high-volume mom, too. But being a parent is different than thinking about being a parent, and after our first, I had to re-think everything. After much debate, we decided to give him a sibling, and I’ll always be glad. Even though it’s taken so much out of me (and continues to do so), it was the best gift we could have given to them both. I know that I’m grateful every day for my own siblings…when our parents are gone, we will still have one another. That’s what I wanted for my kids; their parents won’t always be around.

    Although I miss the old life when it was me and my little guy against the world, and although I felt like I was cheating on him when his brother was born, watching the two of them love each other is almost even better than when they wrap their arms around my neck.

    I wish you luck!

  • Lane Meyer

    2006/05/18 at 9:41 am

    We have one…and we are done. He is a rockin’ 8 year old. Single child. Little adult. He is perfect.

    I learned soon after he was born that he would be it. My choice. Our choice. I, too, had postpartum depression. Not something I would ever care to go thru again, nor wish on ANYONE, even TomKat.

    We were constantly asked when we were having more. Still comes up when we meet new people (why is it people think you have to have more than one? Why do they think any of this is their business anyway??) and I have found that blurting out “Paul got snipped” usually ends that conversation rather quickly. Hey, if they are asking personal shit…I am gonna get personal!

    Just a little bit of my experience for you. You will do what is right for you. No matter what the decision. It will be right for you.

  • scoxsmith

    2006/05/18 at 9:40 am

    Every time you post about Leta it reminds me so much of when my son was little. He was a big handful from the get-go and I didn’t even suffer with PPD. We did decide to have one more and I’m glad we did. We felt so much more confident because we knew that we could deal with whatever came our way. I even enjoyed the crazyness a little bit, because I felt experienced enough to keep up what worked the first time and change what didn’t. My daughter is a completely different kind of handful, but I at least know better to expect the unexpected.

    No parent ever feels truly successful when raising a child, but sometimes, going through it again (and again, and again… ) takes the pressure off the parents and the first child because you’ve widened your investment, so to speak.

    It truly is a choice a couple should consider carefully but I definitely think you guys are up to it.

  • Janis Branca

    2006/05/18 at 9:39 am

    You’ll know if and when the time is right.

    I’ve never had to deal with PPD. But I do have bipolar, so I do understand those dark thoughts and feelings. Up, down, up down, Yay! What a fun ride! Not.

    I’ve told you before and I’ll tell you again. If you ever want Leta to play with my twins, come on over. Hell, bring your whole family. Then you all can see what fun, crazy chaos it is to have a huge family! HAHAHA Would telling you I have booze and lots of it tempt you into a visit? HAHA!

    As an aside – thanks for passing my email on to Jon. He gave me some good ideas on where to find web servers for our non-profit. Give him a smooch for me- no tongue though. Don’t want to be too forward with your man. :o)

  • Mrs. Ricardo

    2006/05/18 at 9:38 am

    I had many of the same thoughts before our second. I listened to my heart. I’m so glad I did. My son is everything my daughter isn’t. And vice-versa. A perfect ying-yang of offspring. My sister, who has one child the same age as my daughter, asked me if my daughter ever talked to herself. Apparently, her son does. I replied “No, she has her brother.” ‘Nuf said.

    Keep listening to yourself and you’ll hear the answer.

  • Amy D.

    2006/05/18 at 9:37 am

    Plan not to plan, Heather! If it happens, it happens, and if not, so what? You have overcome so much, and I’m sure you know, or I hope you do, that you’re capable of dealing with anything that life throws your way. You know life isn’t easy, but we’re human….our claim to fame is that we adapt! Opposable thumbs and shit; we’re always doing stuff that seems impossible before we get it done. Plus, Leta would be the BEST. BIG. SISTER. EVER! (besides me of course!) Don’t you want to watch her eat baby toes and stuff? Don’t let fear or other people’s expectations stop you….or make you feel guilty for choosing not to…it’s nobody’s business but yours, but thanks so much for sharing with all of us anyways!

  • NixMom

    2006/05/18 at 9:36 am

    We’re stuck on this question too. We have decided that once our son (who’s 21 months) is potty trained and in daycare at least part-time, we will try for another one. I don’t think I’m ready to take my full attention away from him yet. I’m not ready to share him, lol. I don’t know if he’ll be ready to share me either. We’ll have to see. We know we can’t afford another one but we’ll manage because we always do. Hope everything works out for you Heather. Take care.



    2006/05/18 at 9:35 am

    Also, I don’t mean to start a war but re: salmonday, if we didn’t blog about things that other people don’t have, want, cry about, nobody would ever blog.

  • JC

    2006/05/18 at 9:35 am

    there are quite a few pregnant women out there who don’t actually want their children after they’re born. Maybe not in Utah, but they’re out there. I think adoption is a great option. You wouldn’t have to pay for the delivery, though I suppose the adoption costs might be similar. No post partum depression either. Something to think about.

  • salmonday

    2006/05/18 at 9:33 am

    You opened this topic up for discussion? You’re braver than I, that’s for sure.

    I believe that there should be a law that you are immune from prosecution if you punch the face of someone who asks you when you’re going to have a(nother) child. My wife and I needed extensive infertility treatments to have our first, and we were hoping that we would have “righted” ourselves as a result of the first, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. We secretly resent anyone who “decides” to have a baby and can just fire up the oven because there are days my wife comes home from work nearly in tears because so many of her co-workers are pregnant with their second or third child and asking her when she is going to “join the club.” I know this doesn’t help your thinking any, but I just want to warn people that asking that question, even if it’s family, toys with face-punching.

  • strawberrygoldie

    2006/05/18 at 11:52 am

    I just went through this. I am 35. Remarried to the RIGHT guy this time. My son is SEVEN, for God’s sake.

    Am I too old? Maybe I’ll have secondary fertility. What if I miscarry like before? Andonandonandon…

    Girl, I am 8 weeks pregnant. I have been given another opportunity to make a HUMAN FREAKING BEING.

    I jumped in, headfirst. No regrets, mamacita. Trust yourself. You will know what to do.

  • h.m.

    2006/05/18 at 11:53 am

    you have to do what’s right for your situation.

    but the perspective i can offer is that i know a five-year-old only child who desperately needs a sibling. she’s my husband’s cousin, and her mom has tried having more kids but hasn’t been able to yet (she’s in her very late 30’s and is going through in vitro right now). she’s a very smart and entertaining child, but when there are no other kids around to play with she is VERY demanding and VERY exhausting to the adults because she needs to have your full ttention and ask you questions and get answers rightawaynow NOW NOW NOW NOW! it’s also too bad that, even if her mom were to get pregnant right now, they would be about six years apart in age (hardly good playmates).
    Leta has always seemed to be a *bit* of a demanding child (tongue in cheek!), so if you were to have another baby, the first year or so would probably be pretty rough. but i’m willing to bet that afterwards, and for years to come, you would be so happy that the two of them have each other.

    and how much of an advantage is it that Jon works from home now? what a great help that would be!

  • shasta2442

    2006/05/18 at 11:48 am

    My only advice is don’t wait until after Leta is already using the potty before you decide. Because for me, once my two daughters were both out of diapers, that was IT. There was no way in the whole entire universe that I was going to start all over again! It’s a whole new world once they’re out of diapers. A good world.

    Joking aside, though, I wish you luck on your decision. It’s a tough one I know. And what the other posters said is true; more than one equals quadruple the work. I can’t explain why but I definitely found that to be true.

  • Amanda B.

    2006/05/18 at 11:48 am

    It’s a big decision, and a responsibility that I can’t fathom at the present time. Whatever you guys decide, I know that you will be just fine. I mean jeebus, Heather, look at what you guys have overcome. You are amazing parents, and Leta has a great advantage in life because she has you two. If you have more monkeys, they will be equally as blessed.

    I also think it’s ok not to want to go through the PPD again, or to just not want more kids. I love kids, but I’m not sure I want to actually have them living in my house.

    Hey, you could always adopt! (ME)

  • cheryl

    2006/05/18 at 11:44 am

    i have an almost 11 month old son & already i am getting bombarded by family & friends alike with questions of when we’ll go for #2. it just seems to absurd to me. i find myself thinking, “really? already? but he can’t even walk or talk or anything!”

    right now, my husband & i feel pretty confident that we don’t want another child. i was not very good at being pregnant & i have no choice but to undergo repeat c-sections for future babies, neither of which i am rushing to experience again. the biggest factor is that i am still so enamoured with my son that i can’t imagine another baby in our lives. i can’t fathom how another child can compare to him. i know that if we had another baby that i would feel the same way about him. since becoming a mother, i fully understand how you can simultaneously single out each of your children as the greatest/cutest/smartest/best kid in the universe. even still, i’m just not ready to take the spotlight off of calvin. and i don’t know if i ever will be.

    my mother-in-law cried when we told her our feelings. she said that she was “deeply hurt” that we might not have any more kids. if that’s not pressure, i don’t know what is.

    along with my emotional & physical reservations, i am always worrying about how we’d manage if we did want another child. it seems like calvin takes every ounce of our energy, all of our attention, all of our love, and all of our money. i just don’t see how people can do it, though i can understand why they want to.

    for me, the answer is somewhat simple. i’ll know i’m ready when the desire for another child outweighs the worry about actually doing it. in that moment of delusional impracticality, i’ll know it’s time & we’ll go from there.

    children– on their own, in twos or fours or tens– are amazing. you’ll know when you’re ready for more. you’ll know when its time. and my advice to you is to jump right in as soon as you do, because there’s never enough time or money or insurance, but there is ALWAYS enough love.

  • cinnarose

    2006/05/18 at 11:44 am

    It is a big decision, one I think about myself (not that I’m married or even in a relationship!). I’m going to goad you on and say DO IT! I have a cute onesie I bought while on vacation in St. Maarten, and I rather send it to you than give it to the pregnant bitch I work with. You could say this decision was not based upon anything that makes sense, and you would be right.

  • ieatcrayonz

    2006/05/18 at 11:44 am

    This has been heavy on my heart lately as well. I thought I was the only one who didn’t get invited back to parties after stuffing little bald heads into my mouth.

    Hell, go for it. Count me in, too. People have done more with less. It’s just money, right? The closest we’ll come to taking it with us is to stuff our coffins with bills. And you know Cousin Jimmy is just going to swipe some at the wake anyhow.

  • Kath :-)

    2006/05/18 at 11:43 am

    Do what’s best for your family and for you…especially for you.

    You could always compromise and get another dog?

    Just an idea 🙂

  • KaraMia

    2006/05/18 at 11:43 am

    Sad thing is you’re never ready till you’ve gone ahead and done it. I have a ten year old and I can’t see myself having another one with only eight more years to go to kick this one to the curb (mommy loves you buddy..really) I say if your going to have another one, sooner the better. If you’re not, don’t beat yourself up over it, life goes on and it leaves you with more time to torture the one ya got. =0)

  • kalisah

    2006/05/18 at 11:41 am

    I felt like you for a long, long time and we ultimately decided not to have any more. I was the middle child in a family of 3 kids and I always felt a little bad for not giving My Kid siblings. It bothers me that when his dad & I are old, he’ll have to deal with it all by himself. But it’s OK to have an only child. When he would ask me why he didn’t have brothers & sisters I told him, “You were all we needed. You made us a family.”

    If your doctors knew to expect PDD, couldn’t they do something to prevent it?

  • Karen Rani

    2006/05/18 at 11:37 am

    Do whatever makes you happy. Great advice, I know. I’m really helpful like that.


    2006/05/18 at 11:41 am

    Who’s ever ready? Our “blessing” caused us to get married a lot earlier, stop everything we were doing and form a family. We’re still not ready, even though she had her first birthday yesterday.

    And Hell, I want another one tomorrow.

  • Testosterhome

    2006/05/18 at 11:36 am

    A sibling is the best gift you can give your child.

  • merseydotes

    2006/05/18 at 11:37 am

    Heather, you’re not crazy for thinking of having another kid, despite a bad spate of problems following the birth of your first one.

    My DD is a couple of months older than yours, and while I didn’t have postpartum depression troubles, I had physical problems ( that – to quote Winston Zedmore from Ghostbusters – would turn you WHITE.

    But I figure, yknow, lightening can’t strike twice, right? And if Brooke Shields can do it again, then I can too. And so can you.

  • pugmadkate

    2006/05/18 at 11:27 am

    BI (Before infertility), we had all sorts of plans regarding family size. Long story short, we have one child (& are so thankful for him), who is now a teenager.

    For me, the hardest thing was accepting that my son would not have a sibling. And in my experience both strangers and family rarely miss a chance to confirm my fears that only child=fucked up child.

    A book that helped me get off the crazy train was Maybe One: A Case for Smaller Families by Bill McKibben. It provided both clarity and comfort.

    If I was Queen of the world, I’d have chosen to have more kids when my son was younger. And baby fever has never gone away in my case. But I’ve come to see the real benefits of our family of three; for us and for our son.

    Best of luck in whatever you decide.

  • Wonked

    2006/05/18 at 11:22 am

    You can take the mormon out of the baby, but you can’t take the babies out of the mormon…

  • PixieMegh

    2006/05/18 at 11:24 am

    Heather, I say take your time! It’s a hard choice to make and not one you want to rush into. I do get the annoyance and the pressure that the LDS church loves to give people about this topic.

    Being married for 4.5 years now and still no sign of babies has brought people to the conclusion that they must not have mentioned it enough for us to consider it. Apparently, as this logic goes, that if they continue to ask me at least 15 times each Sunday that I’ll finally take the hint and get pregnant. Well guess what? I’m going to school full time and working full time too. I have hardly enough time to do my homework, let alone getting pregnant and raising a kid to boot.

    Don’t get me wrong, I want a baby but I’m SO not ready yet either!

  • jaclyng

    2006/05/18 at 11:21 am

    Oh Heather. This is going to be a tough one. I, like you, did not take to mothering so perfectly although now I’m pretty good at it. We agonized over having another child (and I had an amazing, embarrassingly easy time of conception, pregancy and birth.) My biggest worry was that I would have absolutely no life except mothering and that’s just not okay with me. On the other hand, I came from a family of five kids and how can I deprive my daughter of a sibling experience? After much confusion, questioning and changing our minds daily, my husband and I both decided that we really did not want another child and to have one simply to provide a sibling was not a good enough reason. There are still days I question our decision and wonder if my 43-year-old body can handle another pregnancy, but in my heart I know we made the right decision for us. And now my daughter gets to be the Undisputed Queen of the Universe. Good luck sister.

  • rebecca

    2006/05/18 at 11:19 am

    Heather, nothing is as totally irrational as the decision to have a child. And having a second child increases the work exponentially, rather than doubling it. That said, I wouldn’t have missed having my (now almost 4-year old) daughter for the world…

    I too suffered from PPD – BAD – and ramped up my Prozac dosage after my first child was born. He was so perfect – such a happy, sparkling, sprite of a child (after the horrid sleepless 1st months) – yet I still dreaded the thought of another. But the mommy lust came back – I conceived a daughter – and oddly enough, my PPD was not nearly as bad after her birth (a VBAC, which may have had something to do with it). I strongly feel that labor support helped my postpartum experience.

    Anyway, I think you are a terrific mom – you so obviously love your adorable daughter with a passion – and the decision to have more kids is entirely subjective. There’s lots of good reasons both way. I’m just glad I did it.

  • katehopeeden

    2006/05/18 at 11:18 am

    I have three daughters, they are nine, eight and four. I think that having one is very different from two (or more) in good and bad ways, equally.
    But, I look at my kids and let me tell you, I am so happy that they have each other.
    Because it isn’t really that *I* have three daughters, it’s that each of *them* have two sisters. And the bond that they have is so awesome.
    It’s worth all the extra work of multiple children 🙂

  • jamie

    2006/05/18 at 11:18 am

    Heather, this is a tough question for anyone who relishes the life they currently have. My oldest is now 7 1/2, and up until she was about 2 1/2, I had closed the door on having more children. Much like Leta, Samantha challenged me in ways I could never have imagined. But at the magic age of 2 1/2, she became such an easy part of our lives, I don’t know if that was us finally adjusting, or if her mood just improved THAT much ;-)…but whatever it was, it was at that time, that my husband and I started entertaining the idea of another child. We jumped in, expecting the “trying” part to take as long as it did the first time, (close to a year)…but nope, BINGO BANGO as they say, and my 2nd daughter, Melanie, was born as Samntha turned 3 1/2. Melanie was an easy addition to our family, and while some of our routines had to be adjusted, it was much easier making room for #2 then it was for #1. With that said, this is still something you and Jon need to figure out, but my two cents is that #2 is not as hard as #1, and if you are lucky, Leta will be a little mommy to her brother or sister, and you will fall in love with Leta in even more ways than you have so far. Good luck with whatever you decide, and I look forward to reading about it!

  • itsadaisy

    2006/05/18 at 11:17 am

    You know what? Whichever choice you make will be the right one. Either way you seem like the type of person who will have a fulfilling, rich life. I don’t think you can go wrong either way and I’m throwing my chips in with the ‘You’ll know when you know’ posts.
    All the best.

  • Lynnlaw

    2006/05/18 at 11:12 am

    But you are so young! Why don’t you just enjoy what you have now and love that little girl up as much as you can without any distractions. With age comes strength and maybe when you are a little older this question won’t be such a struggle for you.

  • Amybobamy

    2006/05/18 at 11:12 am

    If I were a religious woman I would say that ‘The Lord doesn’t put us through anything that we can’t handle’ –
    I’m not religious though.

    I’ve got baby fever, but I’m practical enough to know that even if we can afford it, even if I love that baby smell enough to re-cut that C-section scar, emotionally I’m not sure I could take it.

    Leta is old enough now and almost to the potty? I say go for it, especially with Jon being home I think it would help if there were any jealousy and with him home and having learned the art of putting dishes in the dishwasher, you’re all set…

  • annepet

    2006/05/18 at 11:03 am

    Oh, and Adam started sleeping well once we had Ruth – he’d wake up when she cried, say “Oh Ruth” and go back to sleep – he was just happy knowing that there was someone else there, even if she was only a tiny baby.

  • drummergirl

    2006/05/18 at 11:00 am

    i don’t know either.

    we have a daughter who will be four in a few months and i’ve always felt sure that she would be an only child. but lately, i’ve been thinking that if we’re going to have another one, it should be sooner rather than later. it doesn’t help when people tell us that we’re being selfish by not giving her a sibling. i’m aware every day that not only are we getting older, she’s getting older too. and if we give her a sibling, they should be close enough in age to grow up together.

    on the other hand, we like our life right now. my husband and i are both in bands, which makes things difficult at times. we’re lucky enough to have my parents close by and i don’t know what we’d do without them. still, i’m often left feeling like i don’t have enough time for everything as it is. we both know our lives would have to change dramatically in order to have another child.

    maybe not having another one is selfish. and maybe it’s the most unselfish thing we can do right now.

    anyway, you’re not alone.

  • annepet

    2006/05/18 at 11:00 am

    I wondered and wondered about this while trying to decide whether or not to conceive a second time. In the end I decided that it was a question without a wrong answer. I already had a boy, whom I loved very much, but I wanted a girl too.

    So we went for a second one. And I don’t regret it for one moment – she is a girl – and she’s wonderful, but there is NO WAY I’m going to have another. I’m not very good at being pregnant, and although it was relatively speaking a straightforward pregnancy, there was enough about it to make it a very unenjoyable experience (ms for 18+ weeks, apparent heart defect at the 20 week scan [which turned out to be nothing], SPD [pelvic condition making walking extremely painful – I ended up on crutches] and a 3rd degree tear & haemorrhage during delivery). But I wouldn’t be without her for the world. Even though she’s now 2, and oh boy is she 2!! I loved your last letter to Leta – I totally recognise that feeling that my child is objectively the most beautiful child ever. (And I have two, and they’re both the most beautiful child ever. I love mom math.)

    As for my first child. I do feel that I lost some things with Adam that I’ve had with Ruth. He did lose out by having a very heavily pregnant, and not terribly well, mother around the time he turned 2. But in the long run he has gained so much. He adores his sister – and it’s pretty much mutual, and the bigger she gets, the more they can play together.

    It was a tough couple of years, and I’m glad the toughness is over, but now Ruth is 2 there is an easing of the load. She’s a chatterbox, which makes it easy to know what is going on in her head. I long for the day when we can give up on diapers – not that I long for the process of toilet training, but hey – the reward will be wonderful!

    And in reply to Lowter – there have always been worries as to the state of the world, and as to whether or not it is a fit place to bring children. I was pregnant with Adam on 9/11. We can all just give up completely, or we can have hope for the future. Having a child is a very tangible expression of that hope.

    So Heather – there is no right or wrong answer. It can’t be calculated rationally, although you are wise to consider the pros and cons so that they are less of a shock. It is always a risk inviting someone new into your life, especially when you can’t politely explain that they have outstayed their welcome. But they joy they can bring is immeasurable.

  • Jess

    2006/05/18 at 10:59 am

    Surely you haven’t read this far.

    If I can do it, a drunk monkey can do it. OK, a medicated monkey would be more accurate.

    For us, the second kid was leagues easier.

    Good luck whatever you decide.

  • HangerMom

    2006/05/18 at 10:59 am

    The comments about giving Leta a “best friend” make me laugh. I’m not saying they’re wrong – I have two young daughters and am very happy we decided to have a second. But I also have a sister, and while I love her, no one would call us best friends. Not in a million years.

    Leta will be a good kid based on how you raise her, siblings or no. Obviously it’s up to you and Jon to decide how many siblings she’ll have. But I will say that I was terrified about how I’d manage with two kids when my second was on the way, and I’ve managed just fine (they’re both alive and breathing still, right?). It’s harder, because you’re juggling time between kids, but it’s easier at the same time because you’ve seen it once and you can relax a little more.

    Buy another roll of aluminum foil for the windows if you decide to have a second. And maybe start training Leta to sleep with earmuffs on so she won’t wake up every time the baby cries.

  • lolismum

    2006/05/18 at 10:57 am

    I thought I could finally handle two screaming babies. Turns out I cannot even handle one screaming toddler and a pregnancy. Because the second pregnancy is kicking my butt. I don’t know if it’s because I am older (35) or tired from running after the toddler, or both, but the first trimester ended me in the hospital because I puked every day, all day. Nothing like the mild morning sickness I experienced with my first one. Now I am on an anti-nausea medicine that costs $43 a pill. You take it 3 times a day and 4 day’s worth is $503!!!! There goes the college fund. And today, I lost my toast and cheese lunch despite the medicating and watched $43 go down the toilet. I am grateful for another child, but I am never ever doing this again. I am too old, too beaten.

  • AmyElle

    2006/05/18 at 10:56 am

    No advice here, it is simply something only the two of you can decide for yourselves. My family jokes that I misunderstood the whole “Go forth and multiply” thing and instead heard, “Go forth and have multiples.”

    I have to wonder now, would I have been so adamant about NEVER having more children if I had dealt with the depression I had after our first died before having more children? It’s something I will never know the answer to. I suck so badly at pregnancy that I was pretty clear with my doc that I wanted no more. If the twins had turned out to be 2 boys (like we thought for a while) instead of one of each, I have no clue if I would have been quite as sure. I am dealing with my baby issues by hoping someone around me gets pregnant. (The odds aren’t good for that though.)

    Best wishes for you guys as you work through this.

  • latchkeymom

    2006/05/18 at 10:55 am

    I totally hear ya. I have one child and honestly can’t imagine going through all of that again. Some of us just aren’t cut out for multiple kiddos. Lucky for me that I realize my own limitations, and lucky for my family. It’s funny how you recognize coming into “your own” around that 2 year old time frame – was the same for me. Everything just eases down a bit and you are finally in control of your familial universe. Be happy with that if it is how you truly feel. You will know when your desire to multiply is great enough that it must be acted upon. Good luck with your decision.

  • Kristine

    2006/05/18 at 10:55 am

    oh and on a side note: if it’s a girl, you could name this one Julia.


  • Jennifer in Kansas City

    2006/05/18 at 10:50 am

    I believe that when it’s time to know, you will.

    Until then, just enjoy the drawling big-eyed beauty that is Miss Leta, for whatever her status is – only child, oldest child, she will always be yours.

  • Shalini

    2006/05/18 at 10:52 am

    Oh yeah.. good luck in this!

  • Kristine

    2006/05/18 at 10:52 am

    I think you need to give Tom Cruise a call and see what he thinks…because you know, he’s the smartest man in the world with all the answers.


  • Cassie

    2006/05/18 at 10:50 am

    You will know when you know. Don’t feel any pressure to answer that question. And that also goes for putting pressure on yourself! Personally I think it’s good to have more than one child, but it’s also important to be financially and mentally stable in the process. Leta (and the rest of you as a family) can grow up perfectly normal and happy as the only child.

    In short – don’t worry about it! Be happy where you are now, that’s what’s most important 🙂

  • Beverlee

    2006/05/18 at 10:50 am

    The postpartum depression would be brutally hard and you would wish that you hadn’t. Sharing the pregnancy and a new baby with Leta will make you glad you did. The sort of comfortable plateau you’ve reached will disappear again. But it will return. And new lessons will be learned and new hardships will be faced and you will continue living your life.

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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