Friday, March 9, 2012

It Happens to Most Moms, I Suppose

As I type, there is a 3 month old little boy snuggled against my chest. It's just me and him today, and I feel like I have been transported back to this time last year.

What a strange feeling to care for a newborn again. His grunts and jerky movements and gummy smiles release floods of memories that had been carefully tucked away. And I dare say just the presence of this sweet new baby whispers to my heart, maybe it would be nice to have another one.

I have to dismiss that thought almost as quickly as it enters my mind for fear of being overwhelmed with guilt. Guilt from thinking of bringing in a new, permanent, little being that would take love and attention away from Cohen. Irrational guilt that makes me feel that just because I'm thinking of another baby, I must not love the one I have completely. Guilt that cripples me when I think about the future and see Cohen not getting the quality and quantity of love and attention he's used to.

In regards to children, Cohen is my first love. And that love is stronger than any other love I've ever experienced. How could I ever feel that for anyone else? My heart just doesn't have the space for another love. And yet, I hear all the time testimonies from mothers of multiple children: their love doesn't fade with each additional child but instead grows. How could this be? How could I love another being as fiercely and unconditionally as I love my son?

How could I give of myself the way I do now, but multiplied? Cohen gets my time and attention, and he deserves it all and nothing less. Any other child we brought into our family deserves the same. How is it possible to give your 100% to more than one child? And if time and attention = love (especially in the mind of a child), how could I ever choose which child to go to in the event they both needed me at the same time?

I've always envisioned my future with multiple children. I don't want Cohen to grow up by himself. I don't want to be finished having babies .. not just yet. But this guilt that I feel simply by snuggling with with another baby while my own son is away from his mama ... it makes me question how ready I am to add another one into the mix anytime soon. Is that my heart telling me we're not quite there yet? Or will these feelings always be there, no matter how many years pass? I welcome anyone's input.


  1. When I was pregnant with Wyatt I felt that way with Kyle. Will I have enough time for him? Will I be there when he needs me? Somehow someway I was!! As a family you figure how to juggle it and make it work. Then again with Ava the same feelings. We make it work. There is always enough time for each one. The Love thing well all I can say is LOVE goes a long way! I love each and everyone of my children the same and I would do anything in the world for them.

  2. It's important to remember that kids don't over-think like we do. Joshua doesn't remember a time when Michael wasn't a part of his life. Michael doesn't remember the before-Isaac time. Even though they fight---a lot---they wander around the house aimlessly when one of them is missing. They're forever friends. I think it's important for kids to realize that it's not all about them. Joshua and Michael understand that Isaac requires more of my attention...and they're fine with that. I'm glad my boys have each other. I'm careful to do group things with them, but then also individual things. Joshua runs errands with me. Michael stays up sometimes with just Josh and me after Joshua and Isaac are in bed. Isaac forces me to slow dance with him a million times a day (it's our thing). It all works out.

  3. Thanks for your input, y'all! It means a lot because I know how happy and well-adjusted and loved your kids are -- kind of makes me think I *might* be able to pull it off in the future, too. Cohen loves his new little friend. He's curious and sweet and shares his toys. He shares his space and his mama, too. Nothing about the way he's acted around the new baby makes me think he wouldn't be able to adjust fabulously. I think it's just guilt that I feel. Do moms ever get grow immune to guilt?! :)


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