Last night I sat my man down and told him exactly how I feel about TTC#2. The problem is I’m not even sure how I feel. So I laid it all out and explained how uncertain and unsure all of it felt.
Basically, this is what I said:
– There is a part of me, the part I believe is driven by my biological imperative, that wants to have a baby right her and right now, come hell or high water. This voice is oscillates between a loud shouting and a quiet whisper and is fairly persistant, though frequently drowned out by the day to day.
– Another part of me, the part I believe is driven by my perpetual state of anxiety, is well, anxious. I’m worried about all the uncertainty, the myriad “what if”s? I’m scared it will take a long time to get pregnant, I’m terrified we’ll suffer another a loss (or God forbid multiple losses or a still birth). I’m worried that TTC#2 will be road we’re struggling down for years. I don’t know if I can handle that.
– Another cause of (considerable) anxiety is that a second child will be the nail in our relationship’s coffin. The way I see it – worst worst case scenario: a second child before we’re both ready would be the end of our relationship. Best worst case scenario: we’re totally miserable for one or two years and it takes another one or two for us to recover.
– Of course our financial ability (or better said, inability) to have another child is also a huge reason to put this whole TTC#2 business on hold, big time.
I said all of this very calmly; even I was impressed with how collected I was during my whole spiel. The fact is I’m feeling pretty calm about the whole thing, despite my oscillating thoughts and feelings about it. I think I’m realizing that there is no best answer, that every approach has considerable positives and negatives and we’re just going to have to make a decision and hope for the best.
The surprising part of all of this is not my new found understanding but Mi.Vida’s response to it. Turns out Mi.Vida is similarly conflicted by all of this. I assumed he thought waiting was the obviously more appropriate choice. In reality, Mi.Vida sees positives to jumping into TTC#2 sooner rather than later too. For one, he isn’t so interested in stretching the baby/toddler years out so that they span the better part of a decade; he would rather the babyhood of the second baby overlap with the toddlerhood of the our darling daughter, thus shortening the overall span. He also likes the idea of our children being closer in age so that they can more easily and appropriately play together (or course being close in age doesn’t guarantee friendship but might make it more plausible). He also mentioned being worried that it might take a while and/or that we might experience more loss, which I really appreciated.
Of course he’s terrified of the financial implication of two children, especially since we’ve determined he’s the one responsible for making more money. He also shares my trepidation surrounding how a second child might test the mettle of our relationship. This past year does seem to suggest that we might be found lacking.
So where does all of this leave us? As you know, I need to have some sort of plan so currently what we’re doing is this: In January we will start our first ever stint of “not trying but not not trying”. We originally planned that for right now but I eventually conceded I would be unable to have unprotected sex without secretly (or even subconsciously) trying to get pregnant. Now, I fully believe that I can, in fact, do that. So in January we’ll throw out the condoms and see if any of our bedroom antics have (somewhat) unintended affects. During this time we’ll also be working to increase our fertility, eating less processed foods, taking supplements, and keeping hot computers off our junk – you know, that kind of thing. Then later, maybe three months, maybe six, we’ll start going at it for realsies.
So yeah, that is our plan, and I feel strangely at peace with it. I know it’s not perfect but I realize now no option is. I feel this plan is the best mix of caution and courage that we can muster right now.
I hope I’m right.