Sunday, October 30, 2011

Baby, Part Deux

Deciding to have a baby is a tremendous leap of faith.

Deciding to go through it all again, having *just* nearly made it through the first round of sleepless nights and tantrums and overwhelming feelings of inadequacy, is downright insanity (I actually usually use other words to describe it, but we're keeping it PG-13 here, people).

"Was it planned?" has been the response we've gotten from nearly every person we've told we're expecting #2 to. Andrea's mom even added "...because this is the last piece of news I would ever have expected to hear from the two of you."

So, why? Why complicate an already ultra-complicated situation? Why risk adding sibling rivalry, more sleeplessness, nursing issues and a whole myriad of other possible problems into the mix?

Until just a few months ago, I was gung-ho against a second child. Sofia would make lots of friends wherever we roamed, she'd have good relationships with her schoolmates and cousins and it would all be fine, her being an only child. This was what I thought... until my grandfather passed away.

And then, we 3 flew out to Florida to be with my small-but-close family. I spent time with my brothers, I got to see my mom and my aunt help one another deal with the pain of losing their father. I witnessed different generations of cousins with siblings, and I realized that that's what I wanted for Sofia - and for Andrea and I.

I grew up in a family of 5 and it literally wasn't until I had Sofia and understood how hard it is that I realized that having 3 children in a family isn't the norm. I'd always taken it all for granted - the family holiday trips, the fights at dinner, the shared experiences. But, when I was there in Florida, looking around at my family, I realized that I wanted Sofia to have some form of that. For better or for worse, knowing she was not alone, knowing that there was someone else on the planet who came from her same roots, who understood in her a way she would always take for granted until one day she'd appreciate it.

And so I offered the idea up to my husband, who almost drove our rental car off the road. "I think we should have another baby." I explained my reasoning, and it didn't take him very long at all to agree - being as he has a brother himself, and when we had originally jumped into this baby thing, we'd sort of always assumed we'd have two.

And so...here we are. Awaiting the arrival of Number 2 in the Spring. Terrified at first, then determined, then excited, then grateful...now a mix of all the above. Mainly, I've come to realize that Number 2 is going to be totally different. I mean, like everyone keeps assuring me, there's no way Number 2 will be like Sofia (and therefore sleep is almost in the bag). But, also, Number 2 is not going to be so scary. That first look in his/her (we'll know in December) eyes, that first diaper change, that first car ride home and first bath and first walk outside in the stroller...it's not going to be nearly as frightening, because we're old pros at this already.

We're doing this because Family is important to us. Because sibling bonds are unique - be they awful or amazing. Because, in total honesty, in time it will actually be easier to parent 2 than 1, as they entertain one another (I'm fully aware that said entertaining may involve fistacuffs, mind you). Because I want to try this again, see another person grow and develop into something unimaginably awesome. Because Andrea is one of the greatest dads in the world and I want to give that to yet another person.

And because, well, truth be told, we're not really getting all that much sleep anyway....


1 comment:

Meredith L. said...

We always have each other, Jodes...