Tuesday, June 28, 2011

BQOTD: The BIG Decisions

It seemed like from the moment Lizzy was born, people were constantly asking us when we were going to have another baby. Now that Lizzy is almost one and a half, that question has begun to pop up more and more frequently. Justin and I had a short conversation about this the other night, and the truth is that it just doesn't feel like "time" yet--I haven't really had any baby fever or other desires to have a baby...so we're waiting. However, the conversation brought up an interesting question that I'd like to ask--What factors are most important to you in deciding to have (or not have) a baby?

Did you guys start trying as soon as you had an iota of baby fever? Did you decide to start trying at all? Did you want to have a certain amount of money saved up/certain health insurance/ job security before trying? Was it that you wanted kids by a certain age or siblings a certain number of years apart? Did you want to buy a house/move out of an apartment first? Do you have things you'd like to check off your life list before having kids (or having another)? A combination of all of the above?

I'm just curious to hear how you came to the decision to try to have (or try not to have) a baby!


  1. Ha if we started trying when I started having baby fever we would have a 3+ year old now :) I have wanted kids for so long. It is definitely amped up now that we are married/have a house/stable jobs; however it is currently just not in our "budget."

    Our plan is for me to stay home with our kids (at least until middle school-ish) and we could feasibly live on John's salary right now- but not still be able to save for our addition. We are hoping to do the addition in cash & in a few years we will have that saved up and THEN we could have kids and I can stay at home with them. Knowing the logic doesn't make it easier to wait though..

  2. I'd say a combination of the list of options you've given. We've talked about kids from the beginning of our relationship, with the understanding that we wanted to be married before we tried. Our families are really understanding that we like our minimal responsibility life as it is now - eventually/hopefully there will be children, we're just in no rush.

  3. I've had baby fever on and off. I then remember what it was like to have a newborn and my fever goes away like that. :) Part of our problem now is we have a very good set up with childcare (since we both work) and that would have to change if we had another....lots fo think about for sure. I'm also not sure how ppl do it, lol, especially working full time. I can barely do it now with one...but ppl do it, somehow!!

  4. Our plan was to have kids when I could easily (without significant financial stress) stay at home. Then Thomas came along on his own schedule :). But that's another saga. So now I don't know. I thought for sure that I'd want to be pregnant by now - I'd want the kids 18 months apart. I'm just starting to feel ready for a 2nd kiddo, but job-wise I feel like I need a little more time before I have to decide to either find childcare for 2 kids or quit my job. And I'm not ready to make that decision - for financial and career reasons. So maybe we'll just let kid #2 decide when that timing is for us like Thomas did. Ha.

  5. I'm enjoying reading through other people's comments! I'm always so interested how people decide when is the right time to have a baby, whether it's their first or their fifth!

    I've definitely had an evolving train of thought about the whole expanding our family thing. My (first, and only thus far) DS is 16mo today! I remember very shortly after I had him having a discussion with my husband about how I didn't understand what made people want to do it all over again! Since then, I've warmed up to the idea of "doing it all over again", but like you, I don't feel quite ready yet.

    As DS gets older and moves farther away from babyhood I do miss having a baby around and I feel ready to parent a baby all over again, but like I said, not quite yet. I'm definitely hoping that we KNOW when it's time, just like we did when we decided to try for DS.

    Also, I'd love not to be in our current house by the time baby #2 comes into our lives. We're hoping to put our home up for sale in the Spring and I think that will be hard enough to do with a toddler around, let alone if I'm feeling run down from being pregnant or tending to a newborn in addition to a toddler! Also, I don't want my kids to be TOO far apart. I don't know what I would consider "too far", but I'm thinking maybe we'll start TTC when DS is 2 (sometime in Spring) and hopefully #1 and #2 won't be more than 3.5 years apart.

    With that said, I am to the point where if we found ourselves with a "surprise" pregnancy it wouldn't be the end of the world. I would have felt quite differently before DS hit a year ;)

  6. We knew we wanted to have been married for a few years--some "alone" time to just be married and enjoy that season of life together, because once it's gone, it's gone.

    We knew we wanted to live in a house large enough to provide for adding a baby to the mix--with a yard and in a family environment. San Diego was just NOT that place for us (nor was the teeny tiny house we were renting).

    We knew we wanted to be debt free, have an emergency fund, be saving toward retirement & working on paying our mortgage off early.

    We knew we wanted to have one by the time I was 30 and he was 40.

    We knew we wanted me to be in a place career (or school) wise that would afford us the opportunity to not have to put a child in daycare.

    Our plan "shouldn't" have worked out so quickly--we had planned on starting a family in another 2 years from now (based on when I would have been done with nursing school). But. God had other plans and blessed me with a job opportunity, working from home, that I couldn't pass up and I dropped out of school for. Everything else on our "To Do Before Baby" list had been accomplished. And then, just a few months later, I saw 2 lines on a pregnancy test.

    No matter how much we plan, God always has a bigger plan :) And amen to that! For His plan has been SO MUCH better than our plan ever could have been.

  7. Ha! I guess we really didn't have a choice in the matter this time around :)

    I feel like I'm on the other end of things. People seem to have their prefences for how everything should be before they decide to have kids, which to me is kind of silly. There is NO perfect time for anything. You'll never have enough money. There will always be a wedding or vacation looming in the distance. For us, we just wanted to have some alone time after we got married and made the pact to not even discuss kids until our 2 year anniversary. Best decision we ever made but honestly, we didn't have any "rules" or set goals before we decided to try. We just felt ready.

    And I suppose once we decided to have baby #1, we were perfectly content with just running with it and having more whenever they came. We never discussed sibling distance or anything which is why we probably just threw caution to the wind this time around.

    But in all honesty, if I didn't feel it was right to have another one so soon, I would have definitely put up some roadblocks this time around. But there was nothing in me screaming to prevent it from happening. And here we are :)

    You'll feel it Meredith. And whatever happens, I believe it's God's perfect individual plan for you guys :)

  8. I've always had baby fever. Like, since I was probably 16. I love babies, I always wanted to be a mom.

    With Ryann, we took Chris's schedule into consideration. We felt it would be best to have a kiddo at the end of his 3rd med school year. We uh, jumped the gun a bit, and got pregnant way faster than expected, so she was a couple months earlier than our plan, but it all worked out just fine.

    Right now I am having some serious baby fever. We just haven't decided what the right time would be. We are/were planning to wait until next summer to start trying, so that Chris would only have a year left of residency, and we wouldn't have to spend too long in our current house with two kids/living on a small budget. But I'm not sure we are going to last :o).

    I don't want the kids to be too far apart, and I'm worried it won't be as easy the second time around. My parents got pregnant with me while my mom was on birth control. When I was around 18 months they decided they wanted another. It was another 2.5 years before my sister was born. I'm worried we would end up like that and I think there is too much of a gap between my sister and I.

    Oy. If I had to guess, I have a feeling we won't be waiting it out, and I might be pregnant in Nov. or Dec. :o).

  9. We knew we wanted our first 2 close together. We wanted to have been married about 2 years when our first arrived (#1 came 3 months after our 2 year anniversary).

    We started trying for our 2nd when we knew I would have been back to work for long enough to get maternity leave and when our kids would be around 17-18 months apart. I'm due in 1 week with #2!

  10. Like everything else in life- we had a plan, but God's plan has taken over. We waited a few years to have our alone time, and when we were both done with grad school and moving into our home we started being less careful about it. But here we are-three years later we are still childless. I am not going to lie- it hurts. But God's plan is always good, and while it kills me to struggle like this, I know that good will come from it, and can already see some of that goodness. Maybe someday I will get to have the joy of those two lines on a pee stick- we are ready and waiting. = )

  11. I would have had a baby in high school if I followed baby fever logic... haha! But we went more by the get married, get a house, fix up the house, pay off debt, save, then have baby! All based on finances. For number two... well, we decided that we don't know what's best... little age gap? big age gap? neither of us had a good answer. So, our solution is to let go of the control and let God! It has been a little hard for me, but at the same time, it is so good for me! God knows when we need another baby (or if we need one).

  12. We knew we wanted to be married at least a year before we had a baby. Then it was a matter of finances (we wanted to have at least 6 months of income saved up as an emergency fund) and for Hubby to feel "ready." Colton come 6 weeks before our 3rd anniversary.

    In terms of having a second, I think there is some concern about finances, but it's not as big of a deal as it was the first go round. This time, we're still waiting to feel ready, and for Hubby (and a bit for me too), that means that Colton is able to be somewhat independent. However, we don't want to have a large age gap - I'd like for Colton to not remember not having a sibling, so that means an age gap of around 2.5 years. At the moment, though, I'm leaning more towards the later end of 2.5 years, but you never know how things will go when you start trying, so we'll see.

  13. -The abridged version-

    Before children, we both wanted to:

    -Be married
    -Complete our master’s degrees
    -Live in a good school district
    -Be able to financially support our family on one income. We had this in mind right from the very start of our marriage. For example, when we purchased our home we based the mortgage on one income. We are very thankful that this is a reality for us. There are parents working multiple jobs who cannot make ends meet. We are very thankful.

    For me, baby fever came WAY before this checklist was complete. But we waited and it was the best decision for us.

    We have an absolutely amazing daughter. She is 16 months old. We are very thankful on many levels. We are very thankful that we did not face infertility.

    Before she was born we said we wanted our children (most likely a total of 2) at least 3 years apart.

    Guess what?! I have baby fever again!

    We are going to wait (again).

    Why the wait?

    1. To stick to the original plan


    2. Our absolutely amazing daughter unfortunately has some medical concerns. We want to give her the time she needs and deserves.

  14. I wanted my kids two years apart at the absolute max, and nothing on earth or in heaven was going to change my mind. I was like a mad woman, determined to get pregnant RIGHT ON SCHEDULE and be done having kids before I turned thirty. I delivered number four a few months before I turned twenty nine, and my oldest had just turned five. In retrospect (and while it was happening, to be honest) I think maybe I could have eased up a little on the obsession. I'm physically exhausted, my kids are overwhelming, my house is destroyed, my BODY is destroyed, my bank account is empty, my sanity has flown the coop...but my kids (when they're not biting each other or throwing matchbox cars at me) are best buds, and so cute together, which is sort of what I wanted...so I don't know. Be careful what you wish for? And at the same time, there's a reason you wanted this in the first place? Who knows.

  15. I could write a novel on this subject. But don't worry. I'll spare you ;)

    Our first was VERY planned. Charting, temping, perfectly timed sex (I know you wanted to know that right?). Our second was VERY UNplanned. As I got pregnant some time during when Landon was 12-months-old. Yeah, see? Unplanned. My plan was to TTC #2 in January 2011. God laughed at my plans and said, nope. You're gonna have another baby in May 2010. I no longer question his timing as it ended up being perfect!

    My boys are 21-months apart and although it can be very challenging at times it's the best seeing my two very young boys together. They won't remember a time in their lives when they didn't have each other. And that just seems really special to me for some reason.

    NOW. We are starting to get the questions about #3. Ahem. I just don't know. I am very undecided. VERY. So much to think about. But I have baby fever pretty much all the time, which is crazy. Brigham is going to be 15 months and I already feel like I could get pregnant again.

    Yes, I know I'm crazy.

    p.s. oops, I wrote a novel anyway ;)

  16. When Matt and I got married, we had discussed that we wanted at least a year to ourselves because we knew we wouldn't be alone for the next 18+ years. I went off the pill earlier than planned because of side effects of my birth control. We also wanted to have our first by 30 and they'd be 4-5 years apart (so we wouldn't have to pay day care at the same time). Now 1 year, 8 months, 2 weeks and 3 days later plus 1 failed IVF and three totsicles, we just hope and pray that we hold a child of our own in our arms one day. All of our plans are thrown out the window, by 30, 5 years apart, wanting 2...now we'll have them when we are blessed, one two or three at a time. Best laid plans, right?

  17. Our only stipulations were centered around being able to afford a baby- the extra things we would need, like cloth diapers, clothing, food, etc. So, I wanted to have a teaching job (since I was close to finishing my cert. then) and to make sure we had the income to afford those extras. After that, we started trying, and it took us 9 months to get our BFP.

  18. *smile*. we tried for years to have our little blessing ... endured a miscarriage ... and are beyond thrilled to have this gift and angel in our lives now (born in april)! we still don't have "enough" money, time, or resources ... but i am finding those things matter so much less than the joy and gift GOD gives us in having a baby. and we are finding that HE is providing for all of our needs, even thought things might not add up on paper!

  19. Can't tell how many times have debated it. Married in 2007 separated for one year and back on the wagon since this year...long story short I've been waiting for this forever...
    and despite the never ending worries such as time, money, resources, etc.
    It is to me funny because it seems that we are finally in the "if it comes it will be a welcomed blessing" but God's timing is different than ours.... So... today I got my monthly gift again. I wanted to be angry, but then after some thinking I told my self, God wants you to be ready before then, and you're not quite ready yet... so just wait..!

  20. Well, we just stop trying now that we have our niece. But For our first we waiting almost 5 years. (And then it took a year and a half) I was always waiting on the right time and was worried about being a good mom.

    Now that I stay at home, I wanted to have the kids closer in age so that some day I could go back to school, finish my masters and work again. God had other plans... but I think we will start trying again this winter.

  21. Awesome question. I didn't get "baby fever" again until just this year, but just because I feel it doesn't mean I want it. We set little, oftentimes meaningless to other people, goals. Like, "if you accomplish this and I accomplish this, we'll try." We have goals for the second but haven't met them yet, hence no trying.

    I analyze the decision a lot and revel in the chance to be able to. Also, fortunately, infertility does not run in my family and it wasn't a problem for me. Being able to plan when I feel I'll be the best parent I can be, for various shared and unshared reasons with others, and actually get to plan for this little person I get to raise and provide for is a powerful gift. I'm so grateful to live in a time when I have a say in it.

  22. Both of my boys were surprises, so I can't speak much... but I think we would have had more of a savings account and planned for me staying home better, if we had to do it again.

  23. Brandon and I always knew that we wanted our kids spaced 2-3 years apart, and once Brayden was about 14-15 months old, we started talking about it. Brandon was the one that brought it up, he couldn't wait to have more! We decided right before the holidays that I would go off the pill and see what happened. Imagine our surprise when just 1 month later, I was pregnant. It is such a blessing, but WOW so much faster than either of us anticipated! The kids will be 26 months apart, which is still within what we "wanted" I guess!

    There is no perfect time to have kids. If everyone had enough money to raise the kids they wanted, this world would be a much different place! BUT it is worth the sacrifice. That's kind of where we stand. Before Brayden was born, we just knew that we wanted to be able for me to stay home, so we worked towards it, made some financial changes, and boom- started a family.

    I do know that if there are more children in my future, I want to wait until this next baby is closer to 3 :-)


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