What to do About #2

I think it was something like 15 hours after Will was born that my grandmother called and wanted to know when we planned on having another one. She was kidding. Kind of. Not really.

MJ and I always planned on having two kids.  Ideally they’d be about three years apart because we never wanted to know the sheer joy and ease of having one potty-trained  kid, only to have to go back to diapers with a newborn.  Better to have six-plus years of diapers all in a row.  So Will just turned 2 this month. If you’re bad at math, that means I have T-minus 3 months and counting to put the proverbial bun in the oven.

In a perfect world I’d do just that. MJ would be pregnant tomorrow.  Then, in a few months, we’d sell our condo and move into a cute little single-family Cape with a fenced in yard for Haley. New baby would come home to an impeccably decorated nursery and all the white picket fenced goodness the American Dream has to offer.

But those aren’t the cards we’ve been dealt.

Simply put, we’re in rough shape. Very rough. To the point where some extremely large changes are probably coming. We don’t have the money to pay all of our current bills, so needless to say the added financial burden of another child seems more than slightly incomprehensible. So for the past few months we’ve been crunching numbers and having some really serious discussions about what we should do.

Last week I was dropping Will off at daycare and our provider was holding a 5-month-old baby named Maggie. Her phone rang and as she scrambled to answer it, and she asked me if I’d hold Maggie for her so she could take the call.

And that’s when everything became very, very clear.

As I held that beautiful little girl close to me, all the nostalgia came rushing back. Those huge blue eyes and the goofy, happy, one-toothed grin. I stared at her in amazement, tracing her fleshy miniature fingers and remembering the joy I felt when I did the same thing with Will. Speaking of Will, he loves babies. LOVES them. He’s so gentle and caring with little kids, and each time I ask him whether he wants a brother or a sister, he happily chirps “sister!” The kid was destined to be a big brother.

Then I thought of my own brother. Sure we couldn’t breathe the same air growing up, but eventually Nate became one of my best friends. And even though we fought all the time, we were also constant playmates and built in friends. We were each other’s measuring sticks for sports, school and everything else. And now I don’t know what I’d do without him. And there mere thought of Will growing up without someone to pal around with (or protect if it’s a girl), is too tragic to consider.

Look, if the question is can we afford to have another baby then the answer is no. We cannot. But you know what? We can’t afford not to either. Because more than anything, we both feel the most important thing is our family. And while Will is spectacular, our little unit is not yet complete. And we’ll do anything in our power to make sure that it is.

How will that work financially? I have no clue. Not a single fucking one. But I know it’ll work out because it has to. Because it’s what we’re going to do.

And I can’t believe I’m saying this, but after having that magical moment with Maggie, I guess a girl wouldn’t be so bad.


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16 thoughts on “What to do About #2

  1. When I first got married, it was me, my wife and 9 year old step son. It was tough just that. A few months later we got pregnant and had our daughter. It was tough with us both working a job. We got pregnant again in 2007, 2008, and 2009. None of them were planned. My wife is home with the four kids and I’m the only one working. I don’t have a lavish job, but we’ve managed to keep our heads above water even though we’re carrying more weight.

    more than likely, there will never be a “perfect time” to have a new kid. I say just go knock her up. 🙂

  2. It is never the right time to have a baby. You will always not be ready. I can honestly say that I was delivering my two boys and I wasn’t ready. Today, even though we have our financial struggles, it is great to see that they have each other and are such great friends. Our financial situation could change over the years but reproductive years get fewer and fewer. Best of luck to you and MJ.

  3. It’s amazing how things have a habit of working themselves out. We’re hoping to have another one in the next year, and while it’s going to make things a little tight, like you guys, we just wouldn’t be a complete family without. 🙂

  4. Good luck with everything. My husband has said he thinks our child needs sibling(s) when we are no longer living; I say one is wonderful, he’s got cousins. Sometimes I feel guilty for saying “one is wonderful” but not only do I worry about the additional financial stress but we don’t have room for another in our small house and I’m getting old. If I was your age it’s be a different story but my life fell into place a little later; I just turned 40 this past January. I worry I wouldn’t have to patience though I seem to have become more patient since having Stan I do have enough trouble in the morning trying to get me and the 2 yr old lil dude out the door. So I have mixed emotions on this subject though as I just turned 40 recently I guess having another is not beyond the realm of possibility just not sure how likely.

  5. Maybe it would be cheaper if you went and held a corn dog? We are only going to have one kid, so I guess I need to make sure that we never hold another one to tempt us.

  6. One was great, two is awesome. The other great thing about two- they can entertain each other and look out for each other when you’re busy or not around. We have two boys 2yrs 8months apart and now that they are 6 (almost 7) and 4 they are inseparable. I love it

  7. As I was reading this, I was saying to myself, its NEVER going to be the right time, just DO IT!

    Then you started thinking like me…

    Good luck!

  8. Like what everyone else has been telling me about my unease with babies… no time like the present. If you want it to happen eventually, you’ll make it work for it to happen now.

  9. I suppose you just have to believe it will work. Finances, at least for me, always seem to work out no matter how tight it might be. And, when you really do want something I think you’ll subliminally make it work anyway. My boys are 17 months apart but my sister has three kids who are all exactly 2 years apart (all their birthdays are between October 20th and 30th. She didn’t even plan it that way, or so she says.

  10. I loved this post. Hubs & I are thinking about #1, and no, we can’t afford it, our house is too small, yada, yada yada.. but like you, we really can’t afford not to.. Best of luck!!

  11. I have one of each and I love them dearly, in different but equal ways. But daughters are different, awesome like sons, but different.

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