Sunday, March 28, 2010

Just The One

First I want to say that I hope my last post wasn't too "seriously so blessed" Randall thought it had ssb leanings and I can see his point. ("and I got it all for only .50 cents!!!" sorry about that)
Anyway, I have friends who keep their blogs "real" by posting the bad along with the good and although my blog is genuine I tend to ignore the not so fantastic stuff. Mostly because either the things are a little too real...depressing, not uplifting, tragic really. Or I feel like I come off as complaining. So at the risk of being lost in translation I'm going to write about something that I have had to come to terms with.
Having just one child.
I'm going to start by saying that I don't believe this situation is permanent...unless it is. At this point (and for the past 5 years) we have been in school and have had no options as far as medical assistance or adoption. So with Randall ready to graduate for the last time Hooray! Our situation will hopefully change and we'll be able to explore those options if and when prompted.
It took us 3 1/2 years and a little medication to have Addi. Less than a year after she was born we tried the medication again and it didn't work. That's when Randall started graduate school.
Over 5 years later and we're still at that point. During the 3 1/2 years prior to Addi I had already separated my emotions, so I didn't have to go into hiding every time a friend or family member had a baby. I was, and am, truly excited for every birth. I am always trying to persuade my friends to HAVE MORE BABIES!!!
So finally to the point, I just wanted to list some pros and cons about my only child rearing experience:
Daily rituals (breakfast, dressing, activities, bed-time) are much less complex and crazy.
Family time = all the time
When it's not family-time she's on a mommy-daughter or daddy-daughter date.
As a result of the previous two points she LOVES being baby-sat.
Sibling rivalry/fights are not really an issue.
Everything is cheaper.
I am her play-mate.
(This can actually go both ways. While I love the very close relationship I have with her, she wants to play with me all the aren't as fun when you're by yourself. But sometimes I just want enough space to swing my arms around--an admittedly substantial radius. But playing Guess Who for the 30th time while I stare at a sink full of dishes needing to be done can get frustrating)
She does have a very active imagination...from playing alone a lot.
She's going to Kindergarten in the fall and I'm going to have FREE TIME!
It's too easy to spoil her. I can't use the "if I get it for you I'll have to get it for everyone" line.
(that was one of my mom's go-to non-no lines)
No built in friends
(This is the one that is probably hardest for me. She is so social, and she really wants a sibling. I want her to have that too, my relationships with my siblings are so precious to me, it's hard to see her miss out on that.)
When ladies start swapping birth/kid stories (as ladies love to do) I don't really chime in unless I'm asked a direct question. I just feel like my experience is so limited...I almost feel like less of a mom than the others.
I can't put big portraits of my "kids" on the walls because it looks like a shrine to MY CHILD!!!
We can't really use FHE charts and the like, which Addi and I both love to use.
Fielding impertinent questions such as, "Have you ever thought of having more children?" from undoubtedly well-meaning people that you don't want to offend. But at the same time you want to scream, "Have you ever thought of minding your own beeswax!" What they really want to know is if we have a fertility problem or if we're making the choice (gasp) to have just one child.
For the record, I usually don't answer these questions, I just let them go.
So there you have it.
And with all that said I love my life and of course my little girl. I have been blessed with peace and contentment knowing that I have basically no options and everything is in the hands of the Lord. And if options open up I'll re-evaluate. But until then I enjoy the pros, ignore the cons and plan for all my free time this fall!!!


turleybenson said...

Interesting, I was just thinking about you guys today and your "one." I imagine you get a lot of questions about it. Without sounding condescending (I hope), I think you have an awesome outlook on the situation. Also, I wish you were my mom.

Also, love the SSB comment. (Did you see I won something on her last giveaway? AMAZING)

Rhiannon said...

You are NOT any less of a mom just because you have one child. I think you are super mom! Maybe this is TMI for a comment on your blog, but if anything should happen to Maeva's parents we would want her to go to the Woods. We haven't put that in writing yet, but it was a no-brainer decision for me & Ry.
I'm glad you guys are almost done with school & can start exploring your options. You are the most fit mother I know... and I'm not just saying that. Addi is so lucky to have you & Randall.

ellen said...

When am I going to get married and when are you going to have another baby? Here's to not answering people's nervy questions. We've both got pretty good lives. :)

Meg said...

One of life's greatest injustices is that 13 year olds can get pregnant and then wonderful mothers, like yourself, have trouble.
As for feeling less of a mom: remember how many times I asked (still ask) mothering advice of you when Lily was born? I took it all and it was awesome. You are awesome.

Although I can't relate to this specifically, I do know what it is like to not have your body behave the way you would like. It is extremely vulnerable and frustrating.
It is interesting that you posted this today. . .and I will tell you why sometime later. Timing is funny sometimes.
I love you.

Maybe more appropriately than ever, my security word is FLOWN

SLP said...

Great post!
Love the SSB shout out :)
I was all set on having one, until we had two.
I am sure moving hasn't helped because people are 'trying to get to know you' and asking questions that well, they shouldn't ask.

pearson1 said...


Thanks for sharing this. Although my parents had 3 kids in 4 years--they then were not able to have more. And often got those impertinent questions (when are you going to have more--while my mom was grateful for the 3 she had). I loved how you gave the pros and cons--cause there always are those.

Thanks! Mary P. (Randall's cousin)

Natalie said...

I loved this post, and sympathized with many of these feelings about which you so beautifully wrote.
You are an amazing mother. AMAZING! I'm just. SO> Proud of you!

Hippy Goodwife said...

Hi! I know this is an old post but I wanted to chime in and say I know how you feel. It took three years and medication for us to have our one too. He is all we will have ( besides his older bro of course, I am not his biological Mom.) It is a weird place. Congratulations to you for putting it out there.