I've been struggling again with whether or not to have another baby. I have all these lists in my brain--the pro lists and the con lists, the things we can't do as easily with 3 and the ways we can get on with it with only 2--and the reasons sort of jumble up together and come out like tangled brambles of a pitiful unkempt shrub. I feel like the decision to have another--or not--sort of drives the rest of my life, like the way my life will go will depend on how many kids I eventually have, which I suppose to some degree is true.
But something occurred to me recently about this decision, and that is that rather than the number of kids driving my life, my life will probably drive the number of kids. What I mean is that I don't know how things are going to go with my life, whether I'll eventually fully settle in here in western NY, whether Mitch will stay in this new job, whether we'll move back out west instead. I do know that right this minute, with two kids that are still very small and no family nearby, having another baby is not what I want from my life, is not the best thing for me or for my family. But it might be the case that I get to a place where it turns out to be the best thing, where I feel settled and emotionally supported and grounded in my mothering, and another baby is the decision we make.
All of this is to say that I don't have to make a decision. What a relief! I've felt so pressured to figure this out, to cut away all the dead stuff from the shrub and see what's really going on under there. (I've been working in the yard, can you tell?) It turns out, like a heck of a lot of life, all I have to do is calm down and wait and listen.