Is your family complete? Some say you just ‘know’ when you’re done having babies. “This shop is closed!” is a refrain echoed by many friends who seem utterly convinced that the childbearing chapter of their lives is over. Conversely, some women say they “know” in no uncertain terms that they’re NOT done having babies. And then there are the fence sitters, a little like me. They can’t say they’re done, but they can’t say they’re not done either. So, how do you know when you’re really, truly done? Is there a perfect number?
Having had three healthy babies, I feel overwhelmingly grateful and blessed, but I can’t say I am done DONE. Some days I definitely think I could be done. Why would I want to add another monster to the brood? Raising kids is definitely NOT all rainbows and daisy chains! But other days, even amid the chaos, mess, and meltdowns, I feel a deep longing to add another little person into our noisy lives. I come from a large family (of five daughters). My childhood was vibrant, lively and noisy. I loved the diversity and the energy in our household. My mum had five and that’s a huge jump from three, so four seems like a lovely compromise, and I have a thing for even numbers. So much “neater” than odd numbers!
I also have a weakness for babies. I just love them and wish the baby stage didn’t disappear so fast. They are intoxicating and I am a bit addicted to them. My husband reminds me that just as puppies grow up to be full-sized animals, babies get bigger too, and their needs grow bigger too (and expensive!) To add another member to the family would require a bigger car, a bigger washing machine, a bigger income and a bigger house! And really, how many years can you survive being tired?! I knew after my second child she would not be my last. I was completely certain that we were not done. After my third I felt complete but not certain. My husband was eager to get the snip but I just couldn’t sign that permission slip. Even though there are times I think we are done, and biologically my baby producing viability is declining rapidly, I prefer leaving the door slightly ajar. Is your door still ajar? If so, you may be still entertaining the idea thinking of adding to your family. Here are 5 signs you are not done having babies
- You can’t part with the baby stuff
Plenty of parents are swift to pack up their baby gear and head straight to the nearest charity shop or kids’ market when they outgrow the need for all the STUFF. Others, like me, hoard boxes and boxes of kids’ clothes, wraps, soft toys and nursery décor “just in case.” Recently my youngest got her first big girl bed. My husband asked if we should give it to someone else. But the clever man thought better of it and placed it in the shed, just in case. If you have a stash of “just in case” baby items that you can’t bear to part with you might not be done after all.
- You don’t remember the bad stuff
Do you remember the swollen veins, back pain, heartburn, nausea, and a catalogue of pregnancy symptoms that lasted almost a year? What about contractions, crowning and post labour stitches that left you to sore to sit? No? How about the bone crushing fatigue and cracked nipples? If this doesn’t sound familiar, along with the “not-so -fun” moments of infant-hood you might not be done having babies after all! Amnesia is probably a legal defence for having more babies. You just seem to blank out all the bad stuff.
- You keep the name in the vault
Plenty of people have a few baby names up their sleeves, “just in case.” If you really don’t to disclose your names from your list, then you’re probably not done having kids. I have a few more girls’ names that I just adore.
- You swoon over babies and preggy bellies
Hands down this is me. I get preggy envy and grab any chance to hold a newborn baby. I love baby stuff and regularly find myself in the baby section of a department store admiring the little onesies and bonds jumpsuits. If you find yourself fantasising over being pregnant again and having a baby grow inside you, then you’re probably not entirely done.
- You just “know”
Your gut tells you it, your heart tells you it, your body even tells you it. You are just not done. Perhaps it’s just one more roll of the dice and you’ve gotta do it… I don’t know if it is as simple as going with your gut. What happens when your gut is conflicted or in contrast to your partner’s wishes? I don’t know if it’s entirely right to be led by your heart without any consideration to your head. Finances and practicalities surely need to be considered too. My “baby” is now three and I think we are probably done, but I am not ruling it out entirely. Never say never…
GIVEAWAY UP FOR GRABS
I may, or may not, be done having babies but I still need a fab bag to carry around everyone’s stuff. And this bag is a beauty.
This stylish and functional BabyMel change bag up for grabs for one lucky reader. It’s light, practical and looks fabulous. Simply comment below and answer this question: Do you know if you’re done/not done having babies? How do you know? Terms and Conditions:
- Answer the competition question below in the comments section.
- Like the NASD Facebook page.
- One entry per person.
- Open to Australian residents only.
The giveaway will close at midnight on 24 June 2015. This is a game of skill. The winner will be awarded a BabyMel bag on the strength of their answer and will be announced on the NASD FB page on 25 June. Even if you’re not in it to win it, please comment below. I’d love to hear from you.
*Article first published on Essential Baby