It’s the question every new parent is asked (usually within 2 weeks of giving birth or bringing your child home). We have been asked if we’d adopt again loads of times and I don’t mind it at all, I probably asked all my friends who have had kids if they’d have another… we’re British and we're nosy, i'm sure it's just one of those things we do like harping on about the weather.
But almost two years into life as a family of three, I have been asking myself that exact question too. I have said before that wanting to have a family wasn’t on the agenda for me during my early to mid-twenties. Then I feel as if something changed and I knew it was what I wanted. So we went and got it. There was no messing about with us, we wanted our little boy, and we found him. Or maybe he found us…
Now that we’re fully established, bonded, happy, loving life, stepping over the different milestones all the time onto the next big thing… I am sat here thinking ‘Could we do it all again?’. And i'm not just thinking about having another baby or toddler, as we certainly aren't through the toddler phase yet... but i'm wondering could we actually go through the adoption process again?
We’ve talked about it of course. We felt incredibly lucky with the adoption of our son. It was like it was all meant to be. Planned out for us. Written in the stars. We went through the assessment process, and it felt, dare I say it, okay. We just opened ourselves up to having a baby, and he kind of just came. There were certainly the anxieties and constant waiting on emails and phone calls during the process but it felt manageable. Actually, maybe it wasn't as painless as i remember but similar to how the female body releases the right hormones after birth to help mum adjust and cope with what her body has just experienced, I have just blocked those memories out once my baby came along?
We have, what I consider, to be such a great set up with our son. He’s happy, he’s comfortable, my husband and I have both returned to work full/part time to fit around his nursery days and having days with him, we have a night-time routine established and cherish those hours that he sleeps so that we can get stuff done or just relax… be Tom and Dan, not Daddy (to be honest I am always in daddy mode, but it’s nice to sit and chill for an hour or two. Just to breathe in the evening after a busy day). Are we selfish for enjoying that time out? If we were to have another child, we’d be giving that time up for sure. Everything we do now for our son, double it if we were to have baby number two…
Now that definitely isn’t a reason not to have another, no way! I think many of us would probably have 3, 4 or even 5 kids if finances and living space permitted it. Isn’t that sad though? These things limiting us to building our family? Equally there are parents that are happy with one child. And I think i/we fall somewhere in-between those two groups.
I’d love to give my son a little brother or sister. But I also know that most siblings just fight all the bloody time, don’t get along and want what the other child has and won’t stop til they have it! The younger one will be the ‘annoying one’ wanting to follow the older one around everywhere (I know this because i was that annoying younger one). I feel it could break our lovely, harmonious, little thing we’ve got going on. It can be carnage introducing a second child to mix, maybe not initially but as they grow a bit older it's usually a nightmare at times handling two. Maybe I just need to see an example of loving siblings to prove me wrong?
I’m not blind to change though, I know my son is going to grow and face challenges like we all did/do. So it’s never going to be all plain sailing, but my life is now dedicated to him and to help him through his life. Splitting that time and love across two or more children will just give me more grey hairs, surely? And a smaller bank balance!
To summarise… life would be a little more expensive, we’d need a bigger car and we’re maxing out space in our three bedroom house as it is, without a second child. BUT... i am in love with being a dad, I would love to have another child and see my son enjoy having a new family member to play with/poke/beat up.
So as you’ll see from reading this, I am still completely undecided. The adoption process can take a long time… if we started in a couple years would it be too much of a gap between the kids? Is that a bad thing? In five years I’ll be thirty-seven, will I want a baby then? There is a lot to consider.
Do you know what...? Maybe I’ll just sit down tonight, have a cup of tea, get back to my book and enjoy the quiet nights while my only child sleeps... for however long that is going to last.