Today, Olivia and went on a fantastic hike near our house. We enjoyed fresh air, which had a delicious September crisp to it, soaked up the last days of the summer sunshine, and listened to the leaves and gravel crunch beneath my feet. On the last stretch of our hike, two women and their babies were walking behind us and I couldn’t help but overhear their conversation. They were talking about having multiple children.
One of the women had a babe and was struggling with the decision to have another. Should she, or shouldn’t she; and when is the right time?
I have to admit that Trevor and I have been asking ourselves these questions a lot lately.
Most people assume that we’re going to have another baby. It get it. Two children is definitely the current social norm. But what’s right for our family? That’s the million dollar question.
We also always assumed that we’d have two children. Having three seemed overwhelming and having one just didn’t seem complete. Two just seemed right for us.
Then we had a baby, and things changed.
Things got real.
Firstly, there’s the financial aspect. The cost of daycare, school supplies/trips/activities, RESP contributions, and extra-cirrucular activities is ASTRONOMICAL (to say the least); not to mention the fact that we’d like to one day give her money for a wedding and a down payment on a home. Plus the fact that we have a mortgage, car, and the desire to take a vacation every once in a while. It all adds up. Oh man, does it ever add up.
Secondly, and most importantly, our family feels complete. At this moment, we don’t feel like we’re missing another person; that Olivia NEEDS a sibling to complete her life. We feel like the three of us just works. It works so well that I can’t even imagine us with another child, and I’ve NEVER had trouble imagining my future life.
I know there are stereotypes about only children; that they’re socially awkward and have trouble sharing or taking turns. But I firmly believe that as long as Olivia grows up around other children (cousins, peers, etc.) and has a loving home that she’ll turn out just fine. I’m not worried about it.
There are also a lot of exciting things that come along with only having one child (like more traveling, etc.), but perks are just perks. They’re definitely not the reason that we’d have one child versus two.
This is where we are. We’re having second thoughts on expanding our family. Right now, we feel like we’re complete.
PS: I know that things change. I know that just because we’re feeling this way right now, doesn’t mean that this is how we’re always going to feel. We know that we could completely change our minds, our financial situation could change, or we could end up with an unplanned bun in the oven. We don’t know what our future holds, but that won’t stop us from thinking and talking about what we’d like our future to look like.