Wednesday, July 25, 2007

More to chew on

I was talking with a pregnant friend the other day about whether or not she should have an amnio and she was saying she was leaning away from doing it and would be glad when the window of opportunity was over so she could stop thinking about it. I realized today that that's just how I feel. My window of opportunity for conceiving a second child is slowly closing - I've got time left yet, but not a lot - and I honestly believe I'll feel some relief when it's over. Regardless of what happens.

I think I've written earlier that I am completely at peace with all of our options: biological child; adoption; only child. I mull them all over and on any given day I feel great about one, good about another, and not much interested in the third. And it changes all the time. When I thought the day of the lucky sevens was going to pan out for us (it didn't, by the way) I was thrilled about being pregnant again and about having an infant in the house and about everything that went along with both of those things. The day I knew it wasn't our month I was crushed but by the next day I was back to thinking about adoption. Not international adoption this time, but adoption of a child from the foster care system.

I started research on all of that (it's what I do; I research) and am left feeling pretty good about that option. There are so many wonderful kids out there. I don't have hesitations about bringing an older child into our house, at least not when Eli's older too (this would be several years from now) and boy does this plan take a financial load off our minds. My hesitation lies more with the question of, "How do you get to know a child and then make a "decision" without potentially breaking a little heart?" I'm sure I'm not the first to ask this question and I think an info session is in order. (When Eli was first born I was a "new moms' group" junkie. I do believe I have now become an "info session" junkie.)

But then I have my days when I think having an only child is the right fit for us. Maybe. The thing is, I never fully get there. I want to. I have on-line role models who make parenting an only child seem just how I'd want it to be. The chance to get to know your kid inside and out. The time to really engage with them. Quite simply, a happy little family unit. Whether these women stay the mothers of only children or take a different path, at the moment they make life with their onlies look really, really wonderful.

And like I said, I want to get there. But I grew up with a sibling and so did David. We both always imagined we'd have two. When you don't think you will ever be the one having trouble getting knocked up it's easy to be certain about your choices, and that's what I was. Certain. The only thing in question was whether I'd have a boy first or a girl first (because I also somehow thought that was up to me). It's just so hard to imagine raising a boy with no brother or sister. I know I could do it and I know he'd be a happy person. I just never want to hear him say that he was lonely as a child. (That, and there's part of me that thinks that if I'm going to screw up as a mom, it's best spread across a couple of people. Concentrating my flaws onto just one person seems a little cruel, don't you think?)

So that brings us back to how best to grow this family. We'll keep on with the acupuncture and the TTC or the BD or whatever you want to call it. I'm shying away from international adoption (or domestic adoption, for that matter) these days because of two things: cost and time. We don't really have $30K to spend right now and don't anticipate having it in the future. I know there are tax breaks when you adopt and I also know our families would help out, so if money was the only issue, we wouldn't let that stop us. But, there's also the timing issue. Specifically, if we're going to adopt we should start the process now (or at least very soon). That means plunking down about $5K before we've completely given up on a biological child.

And that is how I have found myself looking at websites with photos of waiting children, asking myself if one of them could be mine. Like I said, if we did decide to adopt an older child it wouldn't happen for a few years so realistically, no, none of those children could be mine. But I'm trying this one on for size and it feels pretty good. More research to be done, of course, but it seems like a good option for us, for many reasons.

In the meantime, I'll just keep loving my only. Not a bad option.

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