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Having Another Baby

Babies are clogging my inbox and filling my facebook feed. Childbirth seems to go in cycles and everywhere I turn lately, someone is announcing a baby welcomed into their world. Oh, baby. Soft, warm, snuggly baby. Sweet, nice-smelling, perfect baby. Bright eyes, tiny fingers and toes, looking like an old man or woman. I see beautiful pictures of baby wearing a hat, wrapped in a comfy blanket, in the arms, and surrounded by, all the people who love that baby more than it will ever know.

I savor every picture, re-read every snippet of the birth announcement. Seven pounds, 8 pounds 4 ounces, 10 pounds 11 ounces, 21 inches, 18 inches, 2 hours of labor, 10 hours of labor. As I learn of the news, I look at my own miracles. My little miracle, who last night applied Chapstick to her own lips, yeah, not those lips, the other lips. My big miracle who is learning to write her name and reminds me that turd is not a nice word. Five years have passed since we welcomed our first snuggly gift to our home and 17 months since we did it all over again. I'm so engrossed in toddler and school-age life but I must confess, having a third child comes up in conversation in our home at least once a week and thanks to all of our friends and social media, it's hard not to recall just how amazing it is to have a baby.

Should we? Should we have another baby? Is Andy's punishment not over yet? Is there a third Marietta girl waiting to join us? Will I be the mother of a son? There are two mini mes sitting on my shoulders, each with her own argument, pro or con baby number 3.

On one shoulder is a glowing, buxom Melissa, with a little bundle in her arms, barefoot in the kitchen. Here's what she has to say about having another bambino:
1. I love having babies. I know, I know, crazy to love the sensation that you are pushing a truck through a key hole, (thanks to an old friend who once offered me that visual) but birthing a baby is such a powerful feeling. The days after having a new baby are like no other days in your life.
2. A third kid increases the chances that one of them will want to take care of us in old age. Or at least pay for our nursing home bills.
3. We have the clothes and access to hand-me-downs if it's a boy.
4. We are old pros at this. Diaper changes, midnight feedings, blowouts. Piece. Of. Cake.
5. Babies are really cute. And they smell so good. And they are so soft.
6. Babies love their parents unconditionally.
7. If Caroline and Charlotte grow up to dislike one another they could like their other sibling.
8. We'd have less money. This would help with college loans and taxes right?
9. My brother doesn't want kids so we'll have another one for my parents. You've gotta have lots of grandkids.
10. You get used to sleep-deprivation.

And on the other shoulder sits a trim, well-rested, paycheck-toting Melissa who looks angrily across my chest. She reminds me about the benefits to having a home with older children and many things on the horizon for me:
1. Going to the bathroom all by myself.
2. Making dinner without someone attached to my feet.
3. Sleeping through the night on a regular basis.
4. No daycare bills and potentially bigger employment checks.
5. Not having to buy a bigger car.
6. Getting rid of weird stuffed animals and other toys that sing and talk.
7. "Affording" college. BTW-I'm not going to pay off my college debt until I'm 50. (BA, MA, WTF?)
8. Going to the lake and being able to swim next to my kids.
9. Sending my kids overnight to grandma's.
10. Spending time doing other things that make me feel powerful, like training for a marathon, or helping Caroline with her math homework.

Ahhh! It's such a toss up. We just can't decide. On my worst day. I think having another kid would officially push me over the edge. The next day I'm running baby names through my mind. Only time will tell whether we welcome a third Marietta to our family. Stay tuned to your facebook feed and email inbox for the announcement, or lack thereof.


Maria B. said…
This is the exact same debate my husband and I have been having for a couple years now. We have a 7 and 3 year old. Both boys. We miscarried last year and now I sort of doubt wanting a third. We're going for it! Just do it! If there is any desire in your heart, go for it! You dont want to live in regret!

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