When’s the right time for a second baby?

number 2

I know. I know. It’s the inevitable question. But when IS the right time for baby number 2?

Thomas is a year old now. I want him to have two other siblings. I am 33. It took us over 2 years to get pregnant the first time. The clock is ticking. What happens if it takes another 2 years?

There are some other people that have been discussing when is the right time for them. Most of them come up with similar reasons. Hannah from MumsDays discusses some of her fears, and quite frankly I think every woman has them! Could I love another baby as much as my first? What will the pain be like? Can I handle a toddler AND a newborn?

Once you have decided on having another, at the top of the list is COST. Child care costs a lot of money these days and lots of families don’t have the choice to go back to work as they just can’t afford nursery fees (Beth has a really good discussion on it, see here.).

So am I ready for another baby?

  • Could I love another baby as much as Thomas? I don’t see how I could possibly love anything or any one as much as Thomas, there is just  no room for anything else in my life-  is that weird/crazy mum talk? I know people do have second babies and love them just as much. It’s just not something anyone can imagine…I am 100% positive that I will love him or her as soon as I become pregnant, I just can’t imagine it until it happens!
  • What will the pain be like? My labour with Thomas went smoothly, but was this a fluke? My body is a lot weaker now than it was before I was pregnant. I was really strong throughout my 1st pregnancy as I exercised everyday. But with sleep deprivation, I’m just not as strong as I used to be! will this make labour more difficult?
  • Thomas is still breastfeeding every 3 hours in the day and every 2 hours during the night (sob sob) so physically I’m not sure I am even ovulating to get pregnant! and how can I feed a newborn when Thomas still isn’t ready to finish breastfeeding? can I handle tandem feeding? I think not! But on the other side of the same coin- I’m up a lot anyway so maybe sooner rather than later will be good to have a newborn so I can get the sleepless nights out of the way now!
  • I am lucky to  be in the position where cost isn’t really a factor as my husband has family money that can support us. I am definitely glad of the chance to be able to stay at home whilst Thomas is still so young.

I would also like to add a few other considerations that effect me:

  • Age. I’m 33 and I would like to have a second baby before I’m 34. This would enable me to have a 3rd child if I wanted to (I do want 3 children! but fear I have left it too late!)
  • Fertility. The clock is ticking. Fertility decreases substantially at after 35 years of age. I know a lot of women nowadays give birth in their 40’s but I want them now!
  • Sleep! I still co-sleep with Thomas….where will the new baby sleep? will Thomas go into his crib (will be a battle!) or will the new baby go into the crib??
  • Career. I do want to get back to work one day when all babies are a bit older….so I have to ask myself how much of a career break do I really want? I’d rather have babies closer together so I can get back to working at least part time when the youngest is 1 year or 18 months old. I quit my job just before I found out I was pregnant with Thomas and decided not to look for another job until Thomas went to nursery. My job as a development worker was stressful. It’s full time. I get phone calls in the middle of the night from countries like Kenya about funding proposals. If we don’t get them in on time, it could lose necessary funds which could help build wells and give needed vaccines and training….if they don’t get the funding, people will lose their lives. I didn’t want to put myself under this kind of pressure when I was pregnant. So I decided to take a career break. But it’s now been 2 years. The development sector is fast paced and I am already out of the loop. The pressure is on for me to at least find something part time. But part time jobs are few and far between because of the nature of policy and programmes work. I could go into another area of development like communications or funding to keep my foot in the door….who knows.
  • How will Thomas react? Scarey Mommy has some good advice about planning the introduction of a second baby to your first. I personally think Thomas will love someone to play with, but may get a bit upset about me not giving him 100% of my attention all the time!
  • How will I react about having 2? I love spending time with Thomas. I am looking forward to reading with him and going on walks with him when he can talk. I was an only child and have amazing memories of me and my mum just reading and drawing for hours. But if I have a younger child as well my attention will have to be split between two! I know I will feel guilty about not being able to give Thomas enough of my time…..argh mummy guilt!

We have already decided to have another baby, as soon as possible. Mainly due to my age, fertility issues and career. I think the close age gap will also be beneficial as siblings would have more in common and could play together. I just have to put my fears aside and be more like Vicki from Honest Mum in her second pregnancy!

I am currently checking if I am ovulating using Ovusense (will blog about it separately!) and am working out a plan to get the breastfeeding down to just daytime feeds!! (any advice welcome!)

I am also really thankful that I won the Zita West giveaway over on Vevios!!! Thanks Victoria! Her book on Planning to get Pregnant is really good! I wish I had it for my 1st pregnancy!

So what about you? are you ready for a 2nd? or have any advice?
I’m linking this post with:
Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

and

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