Be it man or beast, adding a member to your family is a huge decision… one not to enter into lightly. I obsessed over which brand of soy milk to buy (Walmart’s Great Value Organic Light Vanilla finally won me over after weeks of anguish), so you can imagine how much I toss and turn over whether or not to have a second child.
There’s so much pressure from society, not to mention family and friends, not just to have a second child, but rather not to have an only child. A mom at “Toddler Time” remarked to me upon sharing the news that she was trying for number two, that although she wasn’t 100 percent sure that’s what she wanted, she didn’t want her son to be “an only child freak.” And then asked me when, not if, we were having our second.
I mean, I get it. Once you’re a mom, you get a license, a certain right to talk about topics that were previously taboo. It’s like the dentist in Seinfeld who converted to Judaism for the jokes. Once you’re a mom, it’s okay to talk to other moms about matters you would never previously imagine sharing with acquaintances (or the woman behind you in the checkout line). Maybe it’s the sleep deprivation that kindles this kinship, and most definitely a sudden lack of contact with other adults, but it’s suddenly okay to ask other women about lactating (or lack thereof), bladder leakage… and the next baby.
But what if that mom doesn’t want another child? Or what if she desperately wants one but is having trouble conceiving? It’s a topic that I don’t broach for these very reasons, but because it’s such a widely acceptable conversation piece, I don’t take offense when asked. I know they don’t mean anything by it… they are simply taking an interest in my life. But the truth is, I have no idea if I want another child or not. I did find these 10 Tips for Deciding Whether or Not to Have a Second Child. They really spoke to me and made a lot of sense. In the meantime, I think my indecision is a decision in itself. At least for now. I have plenty of time… the door is definitely not closed. All it takes is a rummage through the boxes of Jed’s old baby clothes and I’m back on the other side of the fence.
We were just as unsure about whether or not to get a second dog… and then we found Wookie.
I was on Petfinder, which I look at from time to time, and it was love at first “site”. I showed Dave his pictures and description and knew we had to have him. We contacted the rescue group quickly, an amazing group out of Bakersville, NC, called Fifi’s Friends. He’s so special, I was afraid that if we didn’t act fast, someone else would snap him up. I’ve never felt so sure about a decision and never been happier. He filled a void in our family that I didn’t even know was there. I hope that if/when the time comes for another addition to our brood, the same feeling will wash over us. When you know, you just know.