Sunday, January 16, 2011

Closing that door?

So I had a plain ol' doctor's appointment the other day, and as we are chatting about this and that, and she's going over my medical record talking about medications and such, she asks if we are planning to have any more children.

I automatically blurt out, oh, no I don't think so.  And we move on to other things.

I'm 38 years old. At this point, were we to have another baby, I would be in the "high-risk" category, perhaps even more so because of the genetic syndrome S has, and how she arrived (quickly, in our kitchen, with little/no labor).  So there would a higher level of concern to deal with, as to the health of the baby and my health and so on.  We did consider another child, about two years ago....and it just about sent me into an absolute panic!  At that time, B insisted he was fine either way - another child, or keeping things the way they were; now he says (and I kind of agree!) that we are getting too old to handle having another baby in the house.  Plus, I don't know where we'd put another child! Each of our kids has their own room now, and I don't know that they could sanely share a room - they aren't even that successful with just sitting in the same room now, as there are behavioral aspects of S's syndrome which K does not yet fully understand, and which drive her crazy.

So anyway, my 'clock' is ticking away, and my instantaneous answer to my doctor's question about more kids is now giving me a moment of "hmmmmm".  I mean, I truly don't feel a huge desire to have more children.  At the same time, isn't it difficult to really, truly close that door (or let nature close it, I guess I should say)?  To really put that possibility aside, once and for all?  I have to say it gives me a twinge of unease to really accept that that part of my life is over and done with.  Being pregnant was just a fantastic experience.  Both kids' births were amazing and incredible experiences.  And while adjusting to parenthood almost lost me my sanity, I wouldn't change it.  So it is somewhat difficult to answer the "more kids" question definitively, to really close that door and accept the idea that having more children would probably not be a great choice for me, or for us. 

How do some people seem to know that their family is not yet complete?  You know, when a couple already has a few children and you're thinking "oh, they're done having children", and then one day they say they're going to have one more "because they just felt their family wasn't complete yet"?  For me, part of the reason I changed my mind about more kids after we had our first child was because I wanted her to have a sibling.  And then S came along, with the PWS diagnosis, and our entire world turned upside-down and inside out, and we have this whole new life to which we needed to adjust.  We no emotional or mental room for considering the size or completeness of our family!  And now, sometimes I find myself thinking, what if K needs someone to help her care for S someday?  Or even beyond that, what is S's life is shortened because of this blasted syndrome, and K finds herself somewhat alone??  That thought just tears me apart inside.  That thought just makes me hate this PWS all the more, because complications of this syndrome will not only affect S's health, but will affect S and K's lives as sisters.  I love my sisters.  They are such a huge part of who I am, and it just breaks my heart when I ponder that someday, K might not have her sister...or any siblings.

So this "any more kids?" question, is so loaded with extra meaning and significance for me.  I kinda wish God would make it really clear that not having any more kids, and investing myself fully in the girls I already have and being a good parent and not worrying about their futures, is the way to go.  The clock is ticking.


J and Pa said...

Welllllll, this is certainly a private individual decision....but almost ALL my healthcare providers & a close friend's healthcare providers said we'd be good-to-go till around 45/46. Lots of risks are gone these days, yada yada. My overall good health, pre-natal care, testing fetuses beforehand, quack quack quack. My friend had first child @ 41, 2nd @43, 3rd @46. I guess she took the estimates literally. All are healthy, brilliant, rich, spoiled, etc..

You may have noticed that I chose NOT to take advice literally! I LOVE children, all 540 of them I have now; all approx. 6,000 I've taught through the years. That love is absolutely physically, emotionally & mentally draining. My population is so needy. I cannot imagine leaving work & coming home to more of the same.

Maybe someday J. & I will foster children. Is adoption an option for you & B?

As for sweet K., she will likely have 2 families --her biological family & her circle of friends. As an only child myself, I count as my Family our incredible circle of art pals, > 20 years, and as tight as ever.

Sorry for the ramble, are we still on for the 29th?

Terry Guinn said...

You have been blessed already and whatever you decide, you will continue to prosper in love. It sounds like this is going to be a very stressful decision. Don't let fear influence your decision. Make it a family decision, but most importantly, follow your heart.