I was recently asked if I was going to have another baby by a guy I got chatting to at Little Man’s swim class. After I had stopped laughing, because surely it had been a joke, I replied no. I’m done. Even if it’s only so we don’t need to buy a whole other car.
It got me thinking afterward, though. I answered fairly quickly, my brain didn’t really process the question until after we had said our goodbyes. The truth is there are multiple reasons – pardon the pun! Seriously, the two main ones being that I just don’t think I could survive another miscarriage. Also the thought of experiencing NICU again frightens the heck outta’ me.
ANOTHER BABY + LITTLE RED
I think I’d be doing a disservice to Little Red and a baby if I was to get pregnant now. Taking into account our history with Recurrent Pregnancy Loss (RPL), means I’d probably be quite closely monitored. I have no idea how I’d even fit in OBGYN visits with our current schedule.
What most people also don’t know is that I had to take progesterone pessaries with the last three of my pregnancies to try and make them viable. All of which was both costly, time consuming and stressful. Which leads me to…
A HISTORY OF RPL
I think sometimes people forget our history of Recurrent Pregnancy Loss. I mean no disrespect by that comment, after all it’s easy to what with being a family of five. Also, I don’t think it’s necessarily been forgotten, we’re just not in the grips of profound grief anymore so we naturally talk about it less. However, the intense emotions of multiple miscarriages and memories of loss are still too current for us. Truth be told, they probably always will be.
This fact combined with my current mental health issues means a pregnancy could be even more anxiety provoking than what it already would be. I really suffered with it until the very end throughout both of my pregnancies that resulted in Little Man and the twins. More so with the girls to the point where I’d go as far as to say that I had prenatal depression and/or anxiety.
Even though I have three beautiful children, Little Man was via fertility treatment and the girls are a bonafide miracle all the way through. The sad reality is that, given my track record, I’m more likely to miscarry again.
Just give me one”, I used to regularly beg to some unknown entity.
I always had this sense that I was being greedy by wanting a sibling for my son. The constant feeling of being eternally grateful for him never left me, probably due to our journey to get him. It’s strange to think that most people, and I don’t know if I’m wrong in saying it’s people that haven’t necessarily struggled to reach parenthood, commonly and openly wish for multiple children and that’s okay.
When you’ve had to consciously make the decision to try because you need help in that area, and then it’s resulted in absolutely incomprehensible heart ache, you kind of come around to the idea that you’ll be happy with just one child. Therefore, if you’re fortunate enough to have the much longed for little munchkin, voicing your desire for another child can be met with a certain hesitation. Or you pick up on a feeling that maybe you shouldn’t want to try. You should just be happy with the child you have, your family is complete and that chapter of your life is closed.
I’m hasten to add that no one has ever said that I shouldn’t try for more children, and I’m the first to admit the (right or wrong) feelings of selfishness are coming from me. Infertility is so, SO difficult and it raises such complex and varied emotions. I still identify myself as somewhat infertile. It was my identity for so long and I’m not sure if it ever really leaves you. There is also a specific grief and loss when you decide to no longer try to conceive. I think this is often overlooked because no “physical” or tangible loss is present.
So, logical or not, it just doesn’t sit well with me to go back for more. Potential hardship aside, I’ve had my gifts and I’m fully aware of that. I’ve never been one to take more than my fair share, and when I look around at some family, friends and blogging buddies in the infertility and RPL community, I can honestly say that I’m one of the upmost lucky ones. Lucky because I can say that that chapter of our life has firmly closed and I feel like I’ve had a choice in the matter.