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True life: I honestly don’t know if I want more kids

Tell me this has happened to you: you’ve JUST had a baby―heck, you may even still be rocking those super-stylish, mesh hospital underwear—and someone asks the shocking question, “Do you think you guys will have another baby?”.

This happened to me. There I was, with a crying baby on my hip and my toddler wrapped around my legs—still adjusting to my untamed postpartum hair and wearing maternity pants months after giving birth—and I politely said, “We’re not sure!”

I may have had a smile on my face, but inside I felt like crying at the thought of doing this all over again.

This question may shock you, it may make you laugh, or make you panic… until one day, it doesn’t. One day, it will become an actual thought; a question that swims around in your head every single day.

Are we done? Is our family complete? Do we have room in our home and our hearts for one more?

This has turned into a daily internal struggle for me. Like a seesaw, my mind wavers from side to side. Although some phases are harder than others, there’s beauty in all of it. Enough beauty to keep you coming back for more.

Phases are fleeting and milestones flash by in a blink of an eye. Watching these tiny miracles learn and grow is my biggest life accomplishment—and it is such a privilege to be able to do this. So, why wouldn’t we want to add another little wonder to our world? Right?

Yes, those middle-of-the-night wake ups are ROUGH. You know, the one where you go to console your baby but the second you do, they fall right back to sleep on you? Then you go to put them back in their crib and as soon as their body hits the mattress, they’re screaming again? Yeah, it’s difficult…until they don’t happen anymore.

Not realizing when that last middle-of-the-night snuggle with my baby will come, I can’t help but wonder: will I ever get to do that again?

Your infant begins crying from the other room. Their cry is piercing and helpless…until one day it isn’t. Your baby’s cry changes so incredibly quickly and transforms into that of a baby who knows exactly what they want and how to let you know. You will learn their “tired” cry, their “hungry” cry, their “I just want you to hold me” cry, and almost as quickly as you learn the difference, they are able to tell you their needs with their words instead.

Yes, it’s hard to spend so much money on clothes and shoes that they will grow out of in a month’s time. It feels as though I am constantly going through their closets to switch out a size, sometimes before I even get to put them in an outfit I’ve been excited for them to wear.

But as I sit in their rooms and close the bins to store those too-small items away, I can’t help but feel emotional: Will I ever need them again?

Yes, there have been and will continue to be moments and days when they don’t get along, when things are hard. However, I can truly say that there is absolutely nothing more beautiful than watching the love between your children grow for each other. The sparkle in my youngest’s eyes when my toddler enters the room is pure magic. Hearing my 3-year-old ask when the baby is going to wake up from his nap because he wants to play absolutely melts my heart.

I can’t wait to see how they learn from each other and enjoy life’s moments side by side. Yet I sit here wondering: will there be another to add to the mix someday?

Is our life beautiful as a family of four? Yes. I know that it is. If you are wondering the same thing about your family, you can rest easy knowing that regardless of the decision you make, your family will be exactly what you need, too.

But what I’ve realized is that it’s okay if you don’t really know if your family is complete just yet. If you are questioning the idea of bringing another baby into your family, like I am, it may be worth exploring, it might be worth sitting with it for a while.

Sure, not every day is perfect. There will be days we may even wonder what we were thinking having another. But for me, at the end of the day, that delicious baby smell beats the smell of the thousands of dirty diapers I’ll change…the screams of laughter far surpass the tantrum tears I’ll deal with…and hearing my little one say, “I love you, Mama”, well…absolutely nothing will ever be better than that.

Maybe adding another bundle of joy to our already wild life wouldn’t be half bad after all…

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