Saturday, February 22, 2014

Why we're done having kids

Last week I was talking to a neighbor about having more kids. She said they decided to have another because she was getting older, so it was either, try to get pregnant now, or loose the opportunity. On the other hand, my reaction, even though I am 29 and my husband is 31, was for him to get a vasectomy last year. She is a stay at home mom. I am a working mom, so I rationalized to her that it just wouldn't be fair for me to have more kids knowing I couldn't stay home with them. But as I said it I thought, fair for the kids, or fair to me? Was this a selfish decision? Yes and no. Yes because I am eager to get onto the next stage of my life where I get to go back to school, unencumbered by little ones. No because I've had major hormonal depression with each pregnancy. For my health, we are leery about what another pregnancy would do to me. With pregnancy out of the question, I do think we would adopt if the opportunity came to us, but I don't think we'd seek it out.

Now I contradict myself. I always wanted a big family. Ever since I started spending weeks at a time at my Uncle's who has 9 kids, I loved big family life. I loved that there was always a playmate, laughter, and this community within a home. Plus there was enough of us to play sardines. I am an only child. Never having a sibling, I knew I wanted to make up for that by having a large family. Then I had my first child, and I realized I was totally unequipped with the know-how for raising children. I had assumed that having children was natural, and I would know exactly what to do in every situation because it's inborn in all women, otherwise why would God entrust me with such a fragile life? I guess he intended for me to learn with on the job training.

Even basic knowledge like if the baby is crying it's either, hungry, poopy, sick or tired, took growing pains to figure out. So I have come to the conclusion that those who come from big families, breed big families. Why is this? Because they've been trained since childhood. I on the other hand, had no training, zero, unless you count the two weeks I babysat for a lady down the street when I was 13, that's it. My husband also comes from a small family, he has one brother. So now I think it's a bit of a triumph that we have managed to have two kids, and not screw them up too bad. I mean Hunter will eat Mayo straight from the jar, but what kid doesn't eat weird stuff right?

So I'm always a work in progress, and I'm still working on getting over my "I chose to only have two kids, but I'm a Mormon" guilt. Which is kind of insane, because it's not doctrine that you must have as many kids as your fertility allows. So I chalk it all up to living in Utah with all the cultural stigma's associated with Utah Mormons. Maybe if we lived in China where one kid is the norm I would feel differently. Anyway, the thing I'm trying to remember is that I'm doing the very best I can, and nobody is judging me but me, so I'm going to get off my own back already and enjoy the amazing kids I already have.

1 comment:

  1. In the end, it's still a personal decision. For as long as human life is not wasted or threatened, the more pre-emptive birth control strategies they take, the better. Thanks for sharing your thoughts about that! All the best to you and your family!

    Timothy Burke @ Sydney Vasectomy Services