Family Planning. I cannot believe I am using this term.
Just a few years ago the thought of planning out my family felt like something that would never happen. I have never been one of those girls who loved babies or felt their maternal clock ticking. I was scared of pregnancy, confused by parenthood, and thought children were annoying. I am just being honest!
Yet, here I am. A few years down the road after the most beautiful accidental pregnancy, totally enamored by my child, and loving being a momma. Did I ever expect to enjoy all of this? I don’t know. I guess it all seemed overwhelming. A part of me is happy we got pregnant so fast, on accident. I don’t know how long I would have put of parenting out of fear.
The question keeps coming at us, “when are you going to have your next?”. I know everyone is well-intentioned. I think about it, too. It is funny, this time around I do want to plan it. Unlike last time, where we just went with the flow of things and embraced uncertainty, a part of me wants to experience the joy of seeing the positive sign on the stick and feeling complete excitement! With that comes trepidation, too. I have seen so many friends I love struggle with getting pregnant. A part of me is scared that if I am excited and ready to have a baby that it won’t happen in my timeline, and that it will break my heart. Especially if it doesn’t happen.
All these things are totally out of my control. Baby making is a miracle. I know how it happens, of course, but am mystified by how completely beautiful and outside of us the whole thing is.
So, we’ve put the question on the table and have come up with some ideas. Honestly, I am excited but also nervous to be pregnant again someday. If it happens. Which I hope it will.
Where do you stand on the whole family planning idea? Do you think it is good to plan your family out, or better to go with the flow? What have you seen happen to friends and family? Do you ever get nervous about putting it off too long, or trying to be so structured things don’t go your way?
I guess, over time, I have come to embrace the idea of planning for my family. While I know it is not going to happen on my timeline or exactly how I want it to go, I love the idea of deciding with my husband when we are ready for our next and beginning to prepare and pray for our next child. It will be fun to have our own little secret (for a while), and goal. I will love to include Lillian in the process.
Which is the interesting part.
Apparently staggering children is of pretty hot debate. I have friends who swear their kids have to be two years apart so they can grow and experience the same stages of life together, and then I have friends who say it is better to have the kids further apart (for the parents’ sanity). I don’t know where I stand, because I think both have pros and cons. At this point, Lillian will most likely be at least three years older than her younger sibling. That is almost an entire high school education away from her younger sibling. I know they will be experiencing many different stages at the same time, and for a while, might not see eye to eye. I do, however, think love and upbringing can still foster a strong and united sibling relationship- no matter what the age gap.
Friends, give me your input! I am interested in all this family planning talk.