When I first got married (at 20 y/o—mind you), I knew I wanted to have children even though I had great and illustrious career plans. The desire to have a baby grew even stronger when one of my closest friends had a baby. I had contracted baby fever!
Three years after my husband and I said I do, baby #1 arrived. (The day after our third anniversary.) When he was about two years old and I realized he wasn’t a baby anymore, I became racked with baby fever again. But being the smart woman that I am, I waited. It just wasn’t the right time. I was working full time as a teacher and finishing up my credential classes. It was not a good time. Finally after a couple years of teaching and with all my schooling completed, I thought now was the time to have another baby. The fever had kicked in again. But wouldn’t you know it, my body just wasn’t ready.
Baby #1 had been an unexpected surprise, but for baby #2 we had to work for it. Actually, we consciously tried to get pregnant for six months and then stopped. We decided if it happened it happened. Well, almost exactly a year after we first started trying it happened!
Baby #2 came and my husband even got a job paying enough so that I could quit working and stay home with the baby and homeschool the oldest for a couple years. So, now baby #2 is no longer a baby, he’s five. Have I contracted baby fever again?
Two of my closest friends got pregnant this past year. One had hers in January; it was her third. And the other one had hers in March; it was her first. So, of course I get emails about all the joys, excitement, and travails of being a first time mom from the latter friend. And I am so happy for her, but I realized that I was glad it was her and not me. I am cured of baby fever!!
Before #2 arrived, I had a six-year-old and that meant that he could do a lot for himself and entertain himself. It also meant that I was not chained to the house. We could go out and do a lot of things. When the baby came, all that changed. As my baby has met those marks of achievement (crawling, walking, talking, potty training, etc) the feeling of having to start all over with a new baby just doesn’t seem all that attractive anymore. I am ready to move forward with my life. I enjoyed all the moments of my little ones babyhood, but now I’m ready for life with my children, not babies.
When I was pregnant with baby #2, we decided boy or girl it would be the last. Well, baby #1 was a boy and baby #2 was also a boy. But we are standing firm; this one is the last. There have been times that I have been sad by the fact that I will never have a daughter and experience that mother-daughter bond. But a friend of mine who is about twenty years older than me (and a mother of boys) told me when I was pregnant with the first, “Boys love their mommies.” And it is true. I have a special relationship with my boys especially the oldest, and I love that. I look forward to a future with them.
Having taught Jr. High for several years, I know in part what I am in for. But I must admit that Jr. High boys can be great fun. I enjoyed my time with them and got along with them better than many of the girls. With that experience, I see certain teenage tendencies in my own boys that can be worrisome, but because I see it I hope that I can nip it in the bud early. The problem that I often see in the parents of Jr. Highers is that parents never took the time to develop a deep relationship with their children at a young age, and then when their kids hit 13 they don’t understand why their children want nothing to do with them or they won’t listen to anything they have to say. So, as a teacher my advice is to build that relationship now and make yourself an important part of your kids lives so that when they are older you will still be there.
On the up side for me, I waited until my oldest was six before #2 came along. So, when I send my oldest off to college at 18, my youngest will just be starting 7th grade. And that is good because from the looks of him, he is going to be trouble and I will need to focus all my energy to keep up with him. Take Care all you mothers out there!