I just Googled “best age gap between children.” (BTW, there is no answer to that question.)
I knew that my baby fever would eventually return as Avery grew but it has hit me HARD. My darling only child is now a toddler; she has some lingering baby attributes but they are fading with each passing day. She is still in diapers but we will be starting the grueling, soul-crushing, messy ritual of potty training very soon. To say that I am so over diapers would be an understatement. I need a break from giving my paycheck to Pampers.
How do you decide how far apart to have your children? Where’s the sweet spot? Is three years too close, or is it just right? How about four? Also? Having two young children apparently isn’t easy (well no shit). One of my friends has an almost-three year old and a six month old and she pleaded with me to wait to have a second baby. She struggles with post-partum depression and anxiety so her issues, albeit common, aren’t necessarily ones that I’m going to have. Every mother’s experience is different. However, I don’t want to be overwhelmed by having two children so close in age. Even if Avery is out of diapers she still can’t really fend for herself. She knows how to take off her socks but putting them on is a skill she has yet to master. Obviously she can’t cook for herself but she does know how to get into the pantry and get her snacks which are thoughtfully kept on the bottom shelf. Maybe I just have a hard time seeing her as a functioning human being. When I look at her I still see my wittle bitty baby. Her face still has that pink-ish glow and her ‘strawberry’ is still prevalent. Her hands are slight and delicate. On the other hand (pun totes intended), she is very much NOT a baby anymore. When I watch her I often forget how little she used to be. Avery was only 5lbs 8oz when she was born and she has stayed on the small end of the scale. She has never fallen off the growth charts but she’s gotten close (in weight, not height and definitely not head size).
She is growing into a remarkable little girl. Now, isn’t it my job as her mother to give her the best life experience possible? In my opinion that means that my little peanut needs a sibling. There are so many things that she will learn about herself when she becomes a sister and I want to give her that gift.
Besides, I have a younger sister and I love the hell out of her. She is my best friend and it would make me crazy-happy if Avery and her brother or sister were to become close.
So, how do I go about planning for baby number two (who, from here on out, will be referred to as Hazelnut. Avery was Peanut so the next one has to have a nutty nickname too). Aside from the obvious making the baby (I totes know how to do that), this go-round will be different than last time. I plan on going back to work once I have the baby. This alone adds challenges that many mothers face. I also would like to lose fifty pounds. I have lost seventeen pounds so far but still have over thirty pounds to go. And of course, the thing that holds many back from expanding their family? Money. We want to build up our savings. Now that we have two incomes we are adjusting and trying to play catch-up and will start putting money into our savings account and leaving it there FOR REAL THIS TIME.
We can build our savings and pay off our debt while I’m pregnant but we want to at least get it started.
There are some ancillary tasks that I would like to accomplish before getting pregnant: get my half-sleeve tattoo done, renovate our master closet and Avery’s closet, and go to Disneyworld. All of these cost beaucoup dollars so we’ll just have to see.
Basically, we want to be ready in all aspects of our lives before we start adding to our family.
But can you ever be truly ready?