We were at a pool party with some of Jason's business associates. Having a great time.
I was taking a break from the pool, standing on the edge, watching Jason & Jena play in the water.
One of the moms needed to run inside, and so handed her one-year-old son to Jason to hold for a few minutes for her.
I looked down to see my husband holding a blond-haired, blue-eyed baby boy, as Jena looked over Jason's shoulder at the baby, a look of quiet happiness on her face.
And I cried.
If I had taken a picture at that moment, it so easily could have been a picture of our family of four. But it wasn't. Because we are a family of three.
And I cried.
I tried not to. I tried to push back the tears. I tried to tell myself all the wonderful things about not having another child. But still the tears came. I excused myself to the bathroom.
Lately I've found myself finding all the wonderful things about being a family of three:
- more (or different?) opportunities for Jena We can give her more attention, more money for activities, vacations, etc. We can let her try and do pretty much whatever she wants (within reason)
- multiple studies say that only children tend to be more successful
- other than a few accidents at night, she is 100% potty trained. No diapers! No pull ups! This is not only a break from work, but gives our budget a break as well
- Jena sleeps thru the night, 9pm to 7am, consistently No more sleep deprivation for these parents!
- Once we get thru this final year at our private preschool (where she will attend Kindergarten), no more paying for daycare / preschool! Another huge break for our budget! We can pay off debt early! Weeee!
- She can pretty much get herself ready. When she wants to. More & more every day. So much less work to both get out the door, and get her in bed. Finally!
And so much more. As wonderful as babies / infants / toddlers are, they are a lot of work. A lot of not-so-fun work. And we are thisclose to being done with that stage completely.
I am enourmously, immensely, intensely happy with my family of three. I am so in love with my husband and my daughter and us as a family. My desire to have another child has nothing to do with my happiness with them. Nothing.
In fact, I can think of a hundred reasons in my mind why not having another child is a good idea, even a better idea, than having another.
My heart still tells me that our family is not complete. I do not know how to explain this. My heart actually hurts at the thought of not having another.
I have no explanation for why. I can't even say it's because that's what I've always wanted. Because what I've always wanted is lots of babies. But I have this feeling deep in my chest that we are missing one. One child to complete our family. We are meant to be a family of four, and I know it somewhere deep in my bones.
And sometimes I think when my heart hurts, maybe it's because I miss this child, even though we haven't yet met.