I have always wanted four children. No idea why, but that has been the deepest calling of my heart. I married young, I contemplated spacing, and I pursued opportunities so that I would be able to have my four children. This desire was only affirmed by my textbook perfect first pregnancy. And even though the second pregnancy had a lot of complications, it all turned out okay in the end. But then the miscarriages started. I have had four pregnancies, but I only have two children. Now what?
Health Concerns – Mental and Physical
Miscarriages happen, especially early miscarriages. My doctors don’t seem concerned in the least. If anything, they are gaslighting me into thinking I’m the crazy one for being worried. Setting aside the possibility that there may be a physical health problem causing my pregnancies to terminate, what about the mental health implications? I damn near had a nervous breakdown after my first miscarriage. After a lot of counseling and a solid wellness plan, my spouse and I were able to navigate our grief much easier the second time around. But can I really put my heart through yet another loss?
Concerns about spacing
I never meant to leave such a large space between my children. So are we going to have the older set and the younger set? How will that affect their dynamic? Are we going to have all of the baby stuff alongside all of the big kid stuff? That’s so much stuff. And the big kid toys have so many little pieces that aren’t safe for a baby. And our lifestyle is so different now. Do we have the capacity for so much change as a family? Would I even remember how to care for a newborn at this point? Can I cope with the exhaustion again?
Concerns about getting older
Specific health issues aside, I’m not getting any younger. I thought we would be wrapping up this baby phase by now. Do I want / should I really consider undertaking a pregnancy at advanced maternal age after multiple miscarriages?
Concerns about my marriage
The clock is ticking. If we’re going to do this, we need to do this. But what if now isn’t the best time for our marriage? What if after years of COVID stress, we need some time to reestablish a normal life and reconnect as a couple? The answer to marital problems is definitively NOT having a baby. Any movie from the ’80s will highlight that for you. But here we are nonetheless.
60,000 Children Were Not Born Because of COVID
I clearly don’t have the answers. But if you are also asking yourself these questions, I want to put this out there so you know you aren’t alone. This is a very strange time for all of us. There are no easy answers. The current indicators are that between October 2020 and February 2021, there was a decline in birth rates due to COVID – 60,000 children weren’t born because of COVID. And we have seen local moms talk about their decisions on waiting to have children due to COVID on this very blog.
Whatever you decide for your family, trust yourself. And know you’re not alone.