7.17.2006

When My AARP Membership Kicks In, I'll Totally Sneak You Guys Into the Theater With Me

When Thalia graduates high school, it will be 2023. With any luck, there will be peace in the Middle East, Keith Richards will still be hobbling onstage with a Camel Light hanging out of his tracheotomy hole for one last farewell tour, and I will be fifty-five.

Fifty-five.

Eek.

One of the great things about New York City is that anything goes. We're outstanding at normalizing the abnormal.You want to live a polygamous S & M lifestyle in your Avenue C walk-up? The neighbors won't even notice. You want to stand naked in a cowboy hat and play guitar in Times Square? Get a new schtick, someone's already done it. And if you want to start cranking out the kids around 35, 40, well you've come to the right place.

I walk into my Upper East Side OB's office and I feel downright youthful. A whole spate of women just like me stream through the green front door. They're women with careers first; ungodly amounts of disposable income first; one-night stands and summer shares in the Hamptons and therapy-induced self-actualization first--families now. There are no regrets. It is how it is.

But here, in the blog world, the reality strikes. Over the past few months I've become keenly aware of the decade-plus headstart that most mothers in the world have over me.

It's a snap to justify: I wasn't ready at 26. I wasn't qualified at 26. Hell, I wasn't even dating anyone at 26 who might have been a worthy condender. Certainly not the narcissistic chain-smoking B-actor; not the radio sportscaster who confessed that his life's goal was to be "the next Rush Limbaugh." (Yes, that was our last date.) In fact if you look at the string of emotional cripples I dated in my twenties, my daughter--or whoever my child might have been--is very fortunate that the condom never broke.

And yes, today I'm older, wiser, blah blah blah blahbedee blahhhhhhhh. I don't need reassurance or pats on the back. Honestly. But I can't help but ponder the truth of my situation. When I crouch over to help Thalia take a few shaky steps across the living room floor, I can't wait to stand up and stretch. The Bjorn is a distant second choice to the stroller on long walks. My body ain't what it used to be, and I don't just mean my boobs. (Oh, my boobs! The poor deflated postpartum boobs--how proud you once stood, how confident, how dignified. Now, you're just a droopy, freeform shadow of your former selves. Ah well, we'll always have Paris. And Wacoal.)

I don't mean to paint myself as some farty old lady in a JC Penny twin set and a Life Alert medical alarm, with Danke Schön playing on the hi-fi. But I am, by most standards, an Older Mom.

I don't allow myself too many morbid thoughts, too many fast-forwards through life with my daughter. But once in a while they creep in and I have to shoo them away. This is the reality of the Older Mom.

And now there is more reality to come in and mess with my sometimes messy reality: The second child decision.

Having my nephew here for the past few weeks and seeing how beautifully he and Thalia interact has solidified my desire to put the old birth canal to use again. It brings back such strong memories of growing up close to my own brother--teaching him the PG lyrics to Jingle Bells, having tea parties underwater in the swimming pool at my grandmother's condo, laughing so hard at the crazy French food names in the frozen food section of Fauchon that we had to be escorted out. Even now, we're so connected to one another that we've been forbidden from pairing up on family game nights. I suppose it's unfair to the rest of the crew that I can guess the charades directive on his Cranium card answer before he's even started acting out Mash. It's just something in his smile that no one can see but me.

I would love nothing more than for Thalia to have the same experience. But my lack of crows feet and grey hairs, the fact that the local bars still ocassionally card me, all betray the real-life age of my ovaries. Now is not a good time for any number of reasons--let's just say "the usual." But is there ever a good time? And if there is a good time, will it be a good time for my women parts?

How far will I go to have another child? What are my limits? Are there limits? Do I even have to think about this stuff? I mean Thalia just sort of...happened. No temperature taking, no injections, no "come on honey, it's that time of the month." It was as if we simply wished her here and she appered.

I want to be fatalistic: If it's meant to be, it's meant to be. But in this case, I believe you make your choices, and you go after what you want before you can start talking about divine intervention. Which means it's my move.

And this is one of the very very very few times in my life where I'm not quite sure what my move is.


80 Comments:

Blogger Robin said...

Wow Liz. I'm struck, more than ever, by your bravery in expressing your feelings to... well, us. Whoever *we* are.

This is quite a personal decision and advice is not appropriate. However, sharing my experiences will maybe be one of the things to inform your ultimate decision.

I'm an only child. My wife and I had our first child back when we were only 23, feeling like, "Hey, no time will be the perfect time, so how about now?". I was so taken with my little girl, that if my wife said, "That's enough", I would have been happy. However, that didn't happen. We had a son, then twins (a boy and a girl), and then one more boy. There was just nothing about these wonderful children that made us ever want to stop.

My oldest child graduates from high school this coming year, the year that my youngest begins school. Freaks me out a little. I'll be 53 when my little guy graduates.

Each child has been wonderful, unique, and has expanded my heart so much I can't express it. I don't know who I would be if I never had each and every one of them.

Good luck.

7/16/06, 11:06 PM  
Anonymous Jill Urbane, The Mentor Mom said...

Ooooooh, I remember that dilema. So easy to get into the "what if's." I know for me and my husband, we finally just decided to go for it...if it happened, it happened; if it didn't, it wasn't meant to be. Lucky for us, it did happened and we were blessed with our now 5 year old daughter. I was on the upside of 35 when I had her (all 10 lbs and 14 ounces...ouch). Rest assured, you'll make the right decision for you and your family. It kind of sounds like you may be leaning one way already? Best of luck.

7/16/06, 11:14 PM  
Blogger jennster said...

i love you and your honesty and everything that you write. that's all i can say right now. :)

7/16/06, 11:41 PM  
Blogger pixie sticks said...

Huge topic. First of all, Robin's clearly insane (hahaha). Second of all, two sometimes feels way easier than one. They actually play together and - when you're lucky - give you a few minutes alone to brush your teeth. You'll end up with whatever's best for you guys. It's weird how it just works out.

7/17/06, 12:01 AM  
Anonymous chelle said...

Although I cannot relate on all levels (yeah I am one of the annoying ones that had their first in their late 20's) I can relate on the what if level. Ours was a wish that just happened too, and the second one that may or may not be meant to be ... umm yeah hasn't happened yet. I have no idea what happens next, but I am enjoying the one we have to the fullest!

7/17/06, 12:03 AM  
Blogger Piece of Work said...

You know, that second child decision is a big one. Since we had minor fertility problems with my first (over a year to conceive, 2 miscarriages), I was FRANTIc to have the second, especially since I considered myself "older" (I was 33). That made the decision to 'pull the goalie' easy--and then,for whatever reason, we conceived the second one with NO TROUBLE (i.e, 2 months). Not that you asked for my story. Now, like a previous poster said, it's easier in some ways--they entertain each other. And I'm really glad that we have the two, and I don't have to worry about aging eggs and all that anymore.
I love listening and watching my two kids play together.
Good luck whatever you decide.

7/17/06, 12:09 AM  
Blogger Jill said...

I'm a shameless baby pusher, so here's my useless unsolicited advice. How about just leaving it to chance for a year and if nothing happens then get serious about it (if you still want a second).

My mom had three kids after age 35, including one accidental baby at 43. I think she was actually a better parent to the last three than she was to the two of us born in her 20s.

7/17/06, 12:16 AM  
Blogger nonlineargirl said...

As a mom thanks to IVF, I don't buy a strict "if it is meant to happen" line. That said, I wouldn't assume you won't have the same luck you had the first time when/if you try again. There are lots of things to worry about. I'd put this worry aside - it will be there later if it is really needed.

Good luck figuring this one out. I'm right there with you wondering what to do and when to do it.

7/17/06, 1:04 AM  
Blogger Lady M said...

I can't imagine having the patience to take care of a child when I was in my 20's. Although being able to pull an all-nighter with ease is a talent sorely missed these days! We're pretty delighted with one, but two would be nice. . . still need to decide our plans . . . Best wishes for yours!

7/17/06, 2:15 AM  
Blogger Violet said...

I'm in a similar situation. My daughter is not yet one, but I'm already 42. So even if my reproductive parts were still viable, I doubt that I'd have the stamina to have a second baby. Just the one is hard enough.

7/17/06, 2:29 AM  
Blogger Queen Haline said...

Girlfriend. Your ovaires are getting older, but they are not quite decrepit yet.

I have no public advice. About whether or not you should go for #2, but lots of private thoughts I'd be happy to share seperately.

Two babies are hard. Two teenagers are even harder (I hear). But if you get lucky, and your kids have a great relationship like you and Jeff, that's priceless!

7/17/06, 2:32 AM  
Blogger Mommy off the Record said...

My two cents is that the world could use as many mini-Mom-101s as possible. Plus, a pregnancy would be GREAT blog fodder. :)

7/17/06, 2:40 AM  
Blogger modmom said...

go for 2!!!!

(are you really going to that blogher conference in san jose? have you been before? please tell us what it's like)

thank you so much for being supportive of me during my breast cancer crap.
i really appreciate it!
i'm dreading the upcoming radiation + i'm in a lot of pain from surgery + bald, but i'd love to crash that conference + i live nearby, can you sneak me in? hahahahha

7/17/06, 3:42 AM  
Blogger carrie said...

Oh, you ARE NOT TOO OLD!!! If anything, you are the norm. When I was going to preschool with my 1st and pregnant with my 2nd (at 25) the other mommies treated me like a teen pregnancy case, and I resented it greatly because it was a choice (albeit only about a year off) to have a family right out of college for us. Anyway, what I am trying to say is, it is your choice (and your husband's of course) and whatever the decision, don't let your age be the deciding factor unless you have health issues. Pregnancy was totally different for me at 30 than at 23, but it could also have been because I had to chase 2 other kids and be pregnant at the same time, who knows? It is a really personal choice that affects the whole family, and Thalia will be grateful for her wonderful parents, sibling or no sibling.

Wishing you luck and looking forward to hearing funny preggo stories if that turns out to be the case!

Carrie

7/17/06, 4:21 AM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

You're not old. Seriously. You're so not old. And your woman parts are obviously in good working order. I wouldn't worry.

We too are thinking of taking the leap into twobabydom for the same reasons you stated, and husband is 35. Or 36? Oops, 36.

Times have changed. 55 is not the 55 that it used to be. I know lots of people who had their first child well into their thirties. It seems perfectly normal to me. And it will be perfectly acceptable when you are 55 and Thalia graduates. Or 58 when Thalia #2 graduates.

To take your mind off your troubles, please do the Uncoolness Of Me meme. I tagged you. Sorry.
http://www.italiantrivia.blogspot.com/

7/17/06, 5:10 AM  
Blogger Antonia said...

Until six months ago, I worked in an office where most of my colleagues were aged 50-60. People in their fifties are WONDERFUL. They're relaxed, funny, they have perspective AND their own teeth. (I nearly broke some of those teeth when I took in some rather clenched home-made biscuits, though.) I was so, so very happy every day that I worked with their generation and not with a lot of fretting twenty- or thirty-somethings like myself.

I'm going to become a mother for the first time in a few months, just after my 35th birthday, and I feel it's the right time to start. I think calmer, more chilled-out parents make for the same qualities in children, and I know that if I'd done this at 21, I'd have been a high-pitched nagging nightmare with a secret stash of absinthe under the sink. Now I don't have the energy to needlessly fret about anything. Many of my friends were born to parents 35+ and their relationships with those parents are visibly happy, relaxed and grown-up, with less whining, less issues.

I don't think you can go wrong. Thalia's so lovely that if you decide she's all you want from a family, you'll be happy, because she's beautiful, and if you decide to make more Thalias, you know they'll make you happy too. The secret is not to worry about what you do or don't do, but just to enjoy it. Oh, and to keep blogging about it, so we can enjoy what you write.

7/17/06, 5:54 AM  
Anonymous Jenny said...

I'll be 51 when Hailey gets out of Hight School.

I want a second one too and have the same concerns. I keep thinking that I'll start trying soon but then I back out. Maybe I'll just adopt a 17 year old so I can be the hip young mommy for once in my life.

7/17/06, 6:40 AM  
Anonymous krista said...

I don't know what to say either- because as the first commenter said, advice just isn't appropriate for something like this. I can share my own child spacing question though. My first was born when I was 20, and in college. Ahem, a surprise to say the least. I finished school, got my life somewhat settled, and then had my second baby George, when I was 25. I want to have another baby because I'd like to have more children, and I admit, I wonder if I'd have a girl.

But- for serious financial reasons, we can't have another one anytime in the near future. This means that if we do have another one, it will in the far future. So, like yourself, I will be an "older mom". My problem with this? I will have spent my ENTIRE adult life parenting little children and will never experience the freedom that most people get to have in their early twenties, that I missed. You see, if I have no more, when my youngest graduates, I will be 43. Then I can FINALLY par-tay! Hmph.

So, maybe I will just keep it with my two children, even though I would really like three.

Wow, I went off on a tangent. See what happens when I blog less on my own blog? You get verbal diarreah from me over here at the Mom101.

Anyway though- I can't help but agree with the commenter who said more mini mom-101's would be great.

7/17/06, 6:50 AM  
Blogger sunshine scribe said...

It is your move (well Nate's got some movin to do too presumably). And its up to you if, when and how the move happens.

You are clearly a great mom and if you put that birth canal to use again then another adorable child gets to know you. If you don't then thats okay too.

Thanks for sharing this brave post. I can relate to it in so many ways and on so many levels.

7/17/06, 7:18 AM  
Blogger movin'mom said...

WOW another interesting connection mom 101

I have periodically sent my sis in law you posts when they apply- she is 4 years younger than me and her and my younger brother have an 17 month old girl Giselle-
They also pondered the 2nd baby and I just got a call last weekend that baby # 2 is to arrive in March.

I always thought the same for them, how Giselle needed a close sibling. My brother stayed home and was the primary caretaker for her first year needless to say in his mind everyone holds her incorrectly, still has to purell their hands to touch her, feeding her has rules the list goes on and on (but those are more my brothers issues than hers)

Having my nephew here for the last 2 weeks (only child and 10) I was happy that I have 4. He was extremely respectful however I told my brother that he needs some help with independence. There was a lot of "Can someone get me a sprite?" "Can someone open it, I don't know how?" "Can someone cut my pancakes?" I need to wash my hands, can someone turn the water on for me?"
I mean, I have a 7 year old who makes his own breakfast and lunches for schools. But I think because he is an only child they don't realize that they do these things for him out of habit.

Siblings are good. I look forward to hearing how your thoughts pan out. Good luck.

7/17/06, 7:42 AM  
Blogger movin'mom said...

p.s. I should probably add , I didn't mean to offend anyone who has only children, I am sure that all of the issues I named are because of disfunction in my family
I am sure my two brothers could post some serious havoc on my parenting skills. My brothers do refer to my home as the "BOOT CAMP"

I think I followed Krista's lead on having blogged less on my own blog and unloaded on mom 101's!
She may charge me rent soon!

7/17/06, 7:51 AM  
Blogger Mega Mom said...

I don't think you need any advice or words of wisdom on this one. I'm pretty sure you and Nate have it all figured out, or will soon.

Best to you all. You have a beautiful family...plus 1 or not :)

7/17/06, 8:00 AM  
Blogger macboudica said...

That is a tough one! Sorry, I don't have any advice. All I can say is good luck to you whatever you decide.

7/17/06, 8:17 AM  
Anonymous Kvetch said...

I think that if you are so inclined, that a sibling is a gift you give your first child. But, I think there are also wonderful ways to raise an only child - if that is what you choose, or are meant to have. I think that sometimes, as time goes on, these decisions are resolved by themselves. That's what i hope for you and Nate - that the answer becomes evident. Whatever it is.

7/17/06, 8:48 AM  
Blogger penelopeto said...

the decision to have #2 isn't easy, regardless of age. i'm 31 and we're struggling with it (posted on it just recently).
if it helps, my mum had 2 in her late 20s and 2 in her early 40s. the relationship with the youngest (who she had at age 42) is the best of the bunch. I think she was just way more relaxed, sure of herself and prepared by then, so she was better able to just focus on her relationship with her daughter, rather than freaking out about whether or not she was doing things 'right'. and my little sis has absolutely nothing negative to say about having a mom up to 20 years older than her friends' moms.

7/17/06, 9:08 AM  
Blogger Mrs. Chicky said...

We're going through the same thing right now ourselves. I thought I knew what I wanted, but now I'm not so sure. I've got no advice for you only good thoughts for whatever you two decide.

(before I go I'd like to thank you for the mental image of your ovaries sporting gray hair and a walker. When you start asking for the early bird special THEN you know you're in trouble.)

7/17/06, 9:08 AM  
Blogger Jezer said...

Ahhhh, yes...I about shat when my OB reminded me that I had "advanced maternal age" at barely 35. I, too, did everything else first. When I finally found a worthy papa and an adequate home and the money and time to take on a baby, then and only then did we consider having a baby. Around here, though, that is not the norm. In our "neck of the woods," I don't have the advantage of living in a city that welcomes diversity--not even in child-bearing timelines. Most of the other first-time moms are in their mid-twenties. I sometimes envy their energy and flexibility and spring. But then again, when I was their age, I was using those resources to live. it. up. I guess it's a trade-off either way.

7/17/06, 9:08 AM  
Blogger metro mama said...

I feel your pain.

I'm in no hurry for the second--the first was traumatic enough and life is only just getting normal again. But, at 33 I can't help but be conscious of the ticking clock.

Good luck.

7/17/06, 9:36 AM  
Blogger Amber said...

I have found myself in the same situation. The majority of my friends married young (early 20s) and have kids nearing their teens right now.

While I IN NO WAY regret the career path I took in my 20s, it would be kind of nice to be done with all this birthing stuff. Especially since we know we're supposed to have 3 kids. Criminy. That'll put me at 36 by the time I have #3. But as Hunky Hubby so eloquently puts it: we need to crank 'em out now while we're still numb. :-)

7/17/06, 9:46 AM  
Anonymous Binkytown said...

In 2023 I'll be 53 and it sounds old, for sure, but my mom is rocking at 55. From the looks of it, so is yours.. Age really is a number. It's about what you want. Soul searching is the best place to start. I look forward to more thoughts on this as I am thinking the same things..

7/17/06, 10:03 AM  
Anonymous wendy boucher said...

Good luck if you do, good luck if you don't. It's fun to see others going through the thought-process. And isn't it fun to visit the OB-GYN and have them comment on your advanced maternal age? I had Girlie at 36 - I'm familiar with the terminology.

7/17/06, 10:13 AM  
Anonymous mamatulip said...

I'm always thinking about when the right time is to go for number 3. It's always in the back of my mind, along with the "Am I sure I really want another?" question.

I'm not sure of what my move is. Right now, I'm kind of going with the flow.

7/17/06, 10:17 AM  
Anonymous MetroDad said...

Every time I walk out my apartment and see people pushing kids in strollers, I have no idea whether they're parents or grandparents. I've been wrong so often, I don't even ask anymore. There's something about living in this city that makes everything so skewed and out of whack with reality.

Whatever you choose will be the right decision. To me, it sounds like you're pining for #2. So if you are serious about it, get cracking! There's never a "perfect" time and it's true....we're not getting any younger.

Crap, I'll be 56 when the Peanut graduates high school!

7/17/06, 10:55 AM  
Anonymous Kristin said...

That Keith Richards sentence blew my socks off.

Wishing you clarity. Or something. Sometimes I wish there was a goddamn spreadsheet, Household Expenses style, for Life Decisions.

7/17/06, 11:01 AM  
Blogger Marie said...

I completely understand your situation...I was 38 when I had my son. He's 2 now... that makes me... yep.

I am so close to my sisters that it makes me very sad to think of my son growing up without a sibling. After we're gone, he'll be all alone. That bugs me. But it seems like one is plenty for my husband. We need to both want another...

Good to know someone else who's grappling with the same thing!

7/17/06, 11:04 AM  
Blogger Travveller said...

Strange that you posted this today. Just last night my husband and I were discussing having another child. Zoe's so wonderful that we really want another. But... I don't want to be pregnant again. I was a sick, bitchy mess for 9 whole months, plus I, too, am in my mid-30's, and the rising rate of birth defects after 35 scares me. So we've decided to adopt in a year or two!

My tow-headed girl may well end up with an Asian sister.

7/17/06, 11:23 AM  
Blogger Fidget said...

I'm sure someone has said it but I'm too lazy to read trhough

if you wait for the "right time" it will never happen

the human race would have died off long ago if everyone waited for the "right time" Thank god for accidents b/c today we could all be encased in some display at the national science museum with cockaroaches buggy faces pressed to the glass, ooing and ahhing over what stupid simplistic creatures we were

7/17/06, 11:25 AM  
Blogger Marie said...

By the way, I think it's very cool that it's so common in NYC to be an older Mom. I wish I knew more older Moms in real life... but am grateful to connect with you & them via blogs.

7/17/06, 11:30 AM  
Blogger PunditMom said...

I still have days when the "pang" hits me -- I MUST have another child. We adopted our daughter 5 years ago, but as a 47 year old mom, I think it's wise to hold at one. I'll be 59 when my daughter graduates from high school in 2018, so I try to count my lucky stars that I was able to make it to mommyhood, at all. Fortunately, my daughter has two wonderful grown-up sisters already (my stepdaughters), so I hope that will be family enough for her.

http://punditmom1.blogstpot.com

7/17/06, 12:09 PM  
Blogger Andrea said...

Yes, the "right time" conundrum. I've faced it myself, and while my age isn't yet a factor (though I can't guarantee that given that I don't know if I'll have as easy a time the second time around getting pregnant as I did the first) "the usual" also creeps up. We always knew we wanted 2 kids about 3 years apart. But then we got used to a certain lifestyle and the cost of daycare stunned us in its tenacity to take over our budget. Because of this, we've had to decide to put off the second child for an extra year (I was heartbroken) so as to only have dual daycare costs for one year. Ugh. And the way we're going, another year might not be enough of a wait. Everyone says, "You can't wait until you can afford it, because you'll NEVER afford it." But how much stock should we put in that? I don't want to end up breaking the bank for the kids and end up depriving them but I don't want our finances to dictate our family plans either. So while I'll be 30 next year and have "more time" to decide, I'm still faced with some of the same questioning as you. When is the right time?

7/17/06, 12:42 PM  
Blogger Denver Dad said...

That's a really tough one. My wife and I waited until we were older too, and while that has a lot of benefits that having a child young doesn't seem to have, it does present some obsticles, as well.

A few years ago, two before Chunk appeared in our lives, we lost a pregnancy (an eptopic pregnancy that started a couple of the toughest months we've ever faced due to a variety of complications). So, when we learned that Chunk was on his way and he came through just fine, I think we both felt really lucky to have him. Would I have wanted more children? I don't know. Because of our older years, we decided to stop with Chunk, but given how great a kid he is and how much he's brought to our lives, we both feel lucky to have him. If he's all we get, I'll still feel like I've won the baby lotto. I feel that way all the time.

7/17/06, 12:46 PM  
Blogger Oh, The Joys said...

101- I'll be 56 in 2023. My daughter and Thalia are about the same age - Thalia's a little older - Ruby won't be one for about 6 weeks.

This post really resonated with me - particularly the blog-o-sphere showing you the 10 year head start other mom's have. That has been true for me too.

Most of my friends are, like you and I, professional women who waited until now to start families. I, like you, was WAY underqualified in my 20's.

Regarding pushing more baby out the canal...is there any really good timing is right! I have an older son, Owen. He and Ruby are 15 months apart. (Meaning I was pregnant when Owen was 5 months old! GACK!) It's been a REALLY HARD year.

The way you describe your relationship with your brother is what I hope for Owen and Ruby...

7/17/06, 12:56 PM  
Anonymous Onetallmomma said...

I had my last at 41. She is now four and I am, hmmmm, 45ish. Becuase of my short gray hair I do get the occasional "cute grand daughter" comment, and then my daughter screams "momma" and I smile and grin.

My hands-down best pregnancy and birth was the last. Possibly because I had chosen a different model. I was healthy and not considered "high-risk" in the midwifery model.

Part of having a child, or even thinking about having a child is a leap of faith. Jumping blindly into the unknown.

7/17/06, 1:22 PM  
Blogger Jaelithe said...

As a young mom, I can't say understand the ticking clock factor. And of course, I couldn't give anyone advice about family planning, because I'm no expert. But I did have a few thoughts:

1.) Siblings rock, but so does only-childhood, from what I hear.

2.) You are not old. Your baby-making factory might still work for years. And anyway, as a 20-something mother, let me agree with a previous poster that these days 20-something mothers get treated-- by single childless friends, by "older mothers," by doctors, even by older family members who had their OWN kids in their 20s-- like irresponsible teenaged moms these days. It's so trendy now to wait until the last possible biological minute to have kids that having kids when you're ovaries are still in tip-top shape is now considered by many to be almost asocially weird. So, when our kids are both in high school, I'll be the weird "young" mom at the PTA meetings. You'll fit right in.

3.) Adopted siblings are just as loveable as the biological kind.

7/17/06, 1:33 PM  
Blogger So-Called Supermom said...

I think that you were reading my mind with this post! The 2nd baby topic has come up lately at home as well. Just not sure what to do, when to do it, and what we want. Grace "just happened" as well so do we do the same for #2 or do we plan it out? SO many questions and so few answers!

7/17/06, 2:09 PM  
Anonymous mothergoosemouse said...

Well, what does your OB say? About the state of your parts, that is.

I don't think the decision is necessarily easy, even when all the stars are aligned. But you're right - it's all that more difficult when you aren't even sure what obstacles you may face.

Cheers to you guys. As always, I wish you the best.

7/17/06, 2:16 PM  
Anonymous neva said...

time constraints and ADD prevent me from thoroughly reading the other comments, so stop me if you've heard this:

1. if you get pregnant, so be it. embrace it and immerse yourself in the joys of knowing another wonderful being will soon be a part of your life.

that said,

2. don't expect baby #2 to be remotely like baby #1. that's not the way it works. ultimately it's a good thing. (that said, my 2nd pregnancy is easier/more fun, delivery was easier/more fun (really) and, for the first 10 months, the baby was easier/more fun, too. then all hell broke loose. but good hell. sort of.)

don't overthink this thing. you've got hormones trying to do a little mind-fuck on you right now. trust me, if/when the time is right for a change, you'll know.

just remember that, no matter WHAT happens, it will be the right thing, for you! xoxox

ps...don't hold off on a 2nd child because you're afraid you can't love another human as much as you love Thalia, because nothing could be further from the truth. the heart is an amazing thing, it expands to accomodate more pure love than you could ever imagine.

7/17/06, 2:43 PM  
Anonymous neva said...

by the way... in a couple more years, i'll be sneaking *you* into the theater. (just sayin'...) xox

7/17/06, 2:45 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

Is there ever a right time? We're going through the "are we ready for #2?" discussion right now. And the truth is, there is no such thing as a right time, I think. A right partner as the father? Yes, and I think you've found him. But right time? Nah. There are reasons for and against me having another child soon. But there are also just as many reasons for and against having a child later.

What did your OB say? If there's no medical problems evident, you could give it a try, and then turn to medical intervention if there's no result in 3-6 months.

7/17/06, 3:02 PM  
Blogger gingajoy said...

fantastic!!! Hooray!
Well, you know as someone with shrivelled raisins for ovaries, I'm right there with you. (though a nubile 35).

Second child--we did two things. stopped birth control (which was spotty to say least) and looked up ovulation time on babycenter.com.

One big bang later and that "if it's meant to be" well, it "be-ed..."
i.e. it can be that simple. it can just take that teensy bit of proaction.

if it did not work out, i was not about to start IVF (great for many, not for me). easy to say if you get pregnant easily, of course, but i was happy with one and not feeling any deep yearning for #2 (am *now* of course--cute little kicking bugger).

so--tentative first step. unadulterated bonking during ovulation. que sera and all that;-)

btw--thanks for shoutout on Amalah. deeply appreciated:)

7/17/06, 4:25 PM  
Blogger Food Mum said...

It sounds like you're ready in your heart for another, so I'm sure it'll happen sooner or later. It's great having more than one and quite close together. They play, entertain each other, squabble, learn conflict resolution, support each other and all without you leaving the house!

7/17/06, 4:31 PM  
Blogger Silly Hily said...

Oh my gosh...underwater tea parties were so much fun! And I can't even tell you the number of times people thought my sister and I were cheating b/c we could guess what the other was drawing in a matter of .5 seconds while playing Pictionary. Good times.
It was right around the time my daughter turned 1 year old that I started thinking I wanted/was ready for another child. I didn't second guess myself. I knew I wanted my kids close together so I got off the pill and let the magic happen on it's own. And it did, almost immidiately. So, here I am, with a 2 year old and a 3 month old. Is it hard? YES! Is it worth it? YES! Do I regret it? NO!
And sister, I'm 27. I had my 3 month old on my 27th birthday. Saturday night I got on the floor to wrap my 2 year old's birthday presents and by the time I was done and stood up, I walked all hump-backed over for a while. I swear it took at least 10 minutes for my body to straighten back out. And my boobs, ugh, my ugly, saggy boobs that aren't even big enough to sag! And I didn't even breastfeed. What I'm trying to say is, I think becoming a mother socks it to you no matter what age you are.
Good luck with whatever you decide.

7/17/06, 4:47 PM  
Blogger Silly Hily said...

Sorry, hit the button before I looked back at what I wrote: immediately.

7/17/06, 4:50 PM  
Blogger Stephanie A. said...

I can relate on the decision making part of this. It's all so hard and I'm not sure I'm really all that ready right now, but then I think when will I be ready and how helpful will those ovaries be when I am?

7/17/06, 7:28 PM  
Blogger Ann D said...

It's such a complicated decision -- made all the more complicated by modern technology. Good luck with your decision.

7/17/06, 7:53 PM  
Blogger Lena said...

Boy, do I KNOW what you're talking about.

How far are we willing to go - are we willing to sacrifice - to provide a different future for our daughters?

I say go for it now. If my va-jay-jay worked as well as yours obviously does, I would! ;)

7/17/06, 8:05 PM  
Blogger Romancing Simplicity said...

When Boyfriend and I were first talking about children, there was one thing my mother said to me that really put it in perspective...

"I've never heard of anyone regretting having their child. I've never heard of anyone regretting having their second or third or fourth child either. The ones that never had that first kid or that kept saying it wasn't a good time to have a second...they're the ones that regret it later."

And at first, I thought that seemed awful presumptuous (sp?!) of her...until I realized that 9 out of 10 times she was right. Most of the people I know who chose not to have kids or not to have the next kid (2, 3, 4, ...) regret it now if they once upon a time had the topic open for discussion. And none of the ones who did have those children regret it in the least.

7/17/06, 8:08 PM  
Blogger J's Mommy said...

I was you 3 months ago. I am not an older mom, at least I don't think I am, but I still FEEL like one. I can't hold my daughter without a searing pain in my back. I can't bend down to pick up her toys without needing help to get back up. And as far as the second baby goes, I'm sure it'll only get worse.

7/17/06, 8:34 PM  
Anonymous mummyv said...

look at it this way: madonna is old and she's the hippest mama in the playground... age is changing... 30s are the new 20s, 40s are the new 30s.. 50s are the..you get what i mean.

one thing is for sure - if you do go for #2, you'll never look back. how could you, you'll be so in love. it's a tough one - i worry about the same thing - age + my daughter not having any siblings...yet.
if you do decide not to, recent studies have shown only children grow up similar in mentality to first born children... she'll be great and gorgeous no matter what.

7/17/06, 9:07 PM  
Anonymous Izzy said...

Dude...if you're old, WTF does that make me? I'll be 39 in September. Doesn't that make you feel a teeny bit better?

But seriously, most of the moms I am friendly with IRL had their FIRST babies between 39 and 41. You have time to think abou it :)

7/17/06, 9:10 PM  
Blogger Her Bad Mother said...

Ah, ditto. Ditto ditto ditto.

Am right behind you on the 'older mom' track and am playing 'if it's meant to be' game. For the first time in my life I don't know what I can do, what I WANT to do, and it's fucking with my head. Seriously.

7/17/06, 9:11 PM  
Blogger Queso said...

Wow. First of all, you're a great writer. Thanks for sharing your talent.

Also, thanks for sharing your thoughts on this. I'm in the same boat. And I hate boats.

On a related note, my grandmother was 44 when she had my mother. (in 1947, very pre-IVF) And I for one am really glad she did.

7/17/06, 9:38 PM  
Blogger Binky said...

I wasn't sure what to say in a comment until I saw the word verification prompt that I would be forced to type in once inspiration struck. It was EPTMY. Since I have a habit of analyzing word verifications for deeper meanings, the first translation that came to mind was "epitome," which would've taken way too much work to rationalize. Then it struck me: EPTMY=My EPT! It's a sign. There is indeed a pregnancy test in your future. Blogger has spoken.

7/17/06, 10:32 PM  
Blogger PunditMom said...

By the way ... nice teeth! :O

http://punditmom1.blogspot.com

7/17/06, 10:34 PM  
Anonymous Nancy said...

I hope you get what you want. All of it, easy as pie.

And I want you to know, you've shot my mental image of you -- I had totally pictured you listening to Danke Schon on the hi-fi. (maybe dancing a little, too)

7/17/06, 10:39 PM  
Blogger J said...

Wow...I just wrote about almost this exact thing today....sigh. Must be the hot summer weather. ;)

7/17/06, 11:37 PM  
Anonymous Nila said...

At my kids school, I'm one of the "young moms" and I'm 34.
We planned to have our kids back to back, and It's the best thing ever. Built in playmate. My boys who are 22 months apart, truly get along.
Recently we've been trying again and it's not working. How I long for a girl, and a baby, but I guess the old eggs aren't what they used to be.

Maybe if you wish hard enough a second kid will just appear like beautiful Thalia did.
If only it was that easy.

7/18/06, 2:12 AM  
Blogger GraceD said...

51 year old mom of a 15 year old teen queen checking in to assure all you excellent mamas of "advanced maternal age" that it's all good here in AARPville. Nothing much has changed from my 40s with the glaring exception of having menopause kick at the same time the queen began her period. That was quite a year, those intese days when estrogen ruled and no man or piece of chocolate within a 5 mile radius of our home was safe.

Liz, I salute you and hope to make your fine acquaintance at that other estrogen fun fest, BlogHer. Or, if I miss you because you'll be busy beating the paparazzi and adoring crowds with your handbag, come watch this geezer mom run the NYC Marathon on November 5. Yup, I'll be in the race, moseying along, leaning on my walker and sipping hits of Metamucil laced Gatorade from my water bottle.

7/18/06, 2:14 AM  
Blogger Ruth Dynamite said...

Follow your heart. Go with your gut. Trust yourself.

You also might want to tidy up the nursery - you know, just in case.

7/18/06, 7:30 AM  
Anonymous H.A.Page said...

My third (and last) will graduate in 2007. Someone told me once "One is none, two is ten, three is a hundred and four is a hundred and one." I think it must be true. Two to threee was a huge jump. Being new to NYC.... I'm told all the time how YOUNG I am to have three kids.

Making the choice, which is what it is now... is hard. To me, going for the third was like taking a deep breath and running off the high dive, then on the way down, freaking, wondering "What Have I DONE????"

Yes, Irony is the word I should have used, rather than "twist"... in my post with your comment... irony is better applied by those younger than I.

Cheers.

7/18/06, 7:50 AM  
Anonymous standing still for once said...

Liz,
As one who didn't have a choice in the matter (well, I could have chosen to risk pre-eclampsia and premature birth again, but then , I could also CHOOSE to walk out in front of a dump truck ... risks must be weighed by the thoughtful), I believe the fatalistic approach is the best, matched with an appropriate amount of reason. You are meant to be the mother you are, and your partner is meant to be the father he is. Thalia is blessed, and if another baby is meant to be in your lives, THAT too will become either very clear or a sperm will sneak through no matter what you do. Hell, I know at least 2 women impregnated by their husbands after a vasectomy. Your thoughtfulness and intentional nature mean that whatever happens, it'll be down-right good.

p.s. Don't you love the post baby boobs. That's why I love Victoria's Secret soooooo much. Look ma! No hands! --M.

7/18/06, 10:04 AM  
Anonymous wordgirl said...

Such a good question!! Whatever you decide, I know you'll have Thalia's best interests at heart and that's what makes you a good mom...no matter your age.

7/18/06, 10:20 AM  
Blogger Stephanie T. said...

Well, you know what "they" say: You never regret having a child, but you may regret not having one.

I'm an "older" mom, too. I'm 38 now and I would love nothing more than to have a third baby. My age would not stop me for a minute. What is stopping me? My DH's vasectomy.

I am an only child and always longed for a sibling, so it was important to me to give my DD a sib (who turned out to be a brother.)

Good luck with your decision. I know what a tough one it is.

7/18/06, 11:16 AM  
Blogger Jenn said...

I just recently said to my husband that he's lucky that we didn't meet earlier cause I'd probably want to have like 4 kids. But at this point I just don't have TIME for that now.

When I joined my online baby-board the realization hit me too. I was the oldest one there. Only 31 (at the time) and the old lady of the group! When your in the NY/NJ metrolpolitan area....you don't realize it. There was a woman right around the corner from where I used to live in NJ who just had her second child at 57! FIFTY SEVEN!!!!! WTF!?!?!

It will never be the "Right Time". Stop using birth control, and then let it "just happen". Aint no time like the present. 1 year is a perfect time to start.

My $0.02 is that it's harder to be an only child. *shrug* take it for what it's worth.

7/18/06, 12:45 PM  
Anonymous dorothy said...

I had a beautiful daughter at 32, and she's going to be an only child. If I wanted more, I would have more. If I do have another, if I change my mind, I'm not going to do it until she's five, which would make me 35 and preggers.

You have to do what's best for you. Don't let other people tell you your child will die without siblings or you have no business procreating into your thirties or forties. It's your decision, yours and your co-procreators - and no one else's.

7/18/06, 2:02 PM  
Blogger Overwhelmed! said...

I'll be 54 when Snuggle Bug graduates from high school so I'm an "older mom" as well.

We'd like to adopt a 2nd child...maybe even a third. I'm hoping it works out for that to happen within the next year because we aren't getting any younger!

7/19/06, 1:05 AM  
Blogger something blue said...

I feel so close to my mom because we are only twenty years apart. I was 20 when she turned 40. When I reach that milestone, my girls will be 8 and 6. I worry about being an older mom and potentially an ancient grandmother.

Yet I still long for a third child no matter how old I'll be when I'm ready. I do draw the line at giving birth after menopause.

I hope you find what's right for you and your family. It is kind of fun to keep practicing just in case. ;)

7/19/06, 2:17 AM  
Blogger K. said...

Being a bit older than most new mothers myself, I understand how you are feeling. Only you can make the choice about what is the right size and timing for your family though. Best wishes to you.

7/19/06, 7:16 AM  
Blogger CPA Mom said...

I don't have any advice for you just wanted to chime in that I'm glad to find another "older mother" out here in blog world. I'm 35. My babies are 3 1/2 and 22 months. My sister is not much older and her oldest is 14 so I was feeling ancient and alone in waiting so long. Good luck in your decision. BTW, love your blog!

7/19/06, 2:01 PM  
Blogger MommyWithAttitude said...

I had both of my kids via the "surprise" method. And I'm really glad, because I don't think I EVER would have been comfortable "trying" to get pregnant.

Both times though, even though it would have seemed like a dumb time to "try," it turned out to be good timing in general for a variety of reasons.

In other words, if it happens, you make the best of it and life goes on. ;)

But oh my God I so hear you on the "imagine what a nightmare it would have been to have reproduced with well over half of my ex-boyfriends."

7/19/06, 5:52 PM  

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