I was taking a walk down a local path the other day, getting some exercise in before it was time to pick the kid up from the rec centre I was walking around. I had my music playing and I walked around and around just thinking about whatever popped into my head.
There was a group of three mums with tiny babies. I thought of our neighbour and her new baby headed out for a walk – get the stroller base out of the car, put the car seat in the stroller, get the baby all set, bring a blanket just in case.
I thought to myself how glad I am I’m done that part now.
And the thought struck me because I’ve wondered whether I had actually decided that. Of course, my main struggle was the perfect names we’ve got whether we had a boy or a girl.
But as I considered it I thought to myself that I really, deep down, have known for a while that I would never be the best mother I can be for the kid that I have if I had another child.
Right now I’m worn down. I’ve got goals of my own and I haven’t even really gotten going in my career yet.
I don’t want to do diapers again, I don’t want to do feedings every three hours, I don’t want more potty training, more tantrums.
I love my five year old, I like her more every year. She can express herself to me. We can have conversations. She can run around and play, and I can sit and watch her, or choose to play with her. I don’t have to be with her every second. Sometimes she even goes into her room and closes the door and plays. By herself. Quietly.
I’m still at this point that I almost don’t believe we’re here now. Like I’ve gotten over some huge barrier. She still wants me, needs me sometimes, but she doesn’t always need me. I don’t worry as much when I’m not there with her.
Though there are definitely some attitude issues between us, which have given me a nice glimpse into the teenage years (and a glance back at my own), it really feels like we’ve got a few great years ahead of us, as we both surprise each other and ourselves with the things we can learn and the things we can handle together.
We’re nice together, just the two of us. (And sometimes Daddy can come along too).