Back when I was still just in my twenties and had only one child, every now and then this feeling would arise that would scare me. It was this wee flash of panic and rage. I don’t remember the setting or circumstances surrounding my having this feeling, probably during an irregular fit of crying from my new baby or perhaps when a marital communication breakdown had occurred. But I do remember in those moments saying to myself THIS is why you are only having one child. That feeling terrified me. It was unfamiliar. I did not want to get to know it any further. It was wanting to scream and cry at the same time. It was wanting to throw something and collapse into a puddle simultaneously. It was the helplessness of knowing you are drowning but you angrily thrash your limbs about anyway.
And I had myself convinced that by only having one child I could somehow contain this scary new feeling, but a second would unleash it’s terror upon the world.
In case you were wondering, it’s true. I am not good with the feelings. I’m kind of a dude in that regard. Stuff ’em down has always been my motto. So obviously new parent feelings threw me for a loop. And if those threw me for a loop, you can certainly imagine the overload to my system that my post-partum funtime was.
And what of that bubbly new feeling? I did discover that it was just called being a parent. Oh yeah, there are all sorts of fun new emotions unlocked when you attain parenthood. Not all bad of course. In fact most are quite amazing. The negative ones are intensified though, I guess because you are responsible for a human being and that is a lot. Your shortcomings, failures, defeats and mistakes all magnified under the parenting lens. Bad days are really bad, but good days are really good.
I guess it must have been a good day when hubby and I decided that Ellie needed a sibling.
It’s ok, sometimes parenting is scary, but you’ve got this. Let’s go for #2. What could go wrong? We’re invincible!!
And then of course along came Liam and all the post-partum emotions (or non-emotions!) and again I was saying to myself THIS is why you cannot have any more children.
But guys, seriously, aside from the post-partum reason I have a 3 page list of why I will not have more children. Most of them have to do with messes, destruction, vomit, and poop though. You know what a cute way to end this post would be? If I was all, “Guess what? We had another good day and number 3 is on its way!”