Last weekend, Life Magazine ran an article called The New Baby Boom about the trend of families having three or more children.
The author (Sabrina Ruben Erdely) writes that although the American family has been shrinking for the past thirty years, many in the baby-care field have noticed an increase in families having three or four kids rather than the traditional two.
She discusses many reasons for this, including fertility drugs that lead to multiple births, more moms staying home, and the desire to finally get that boy or girl after having two of the same sex.
But I think the reason that resonated most with me is contained in a quote from the article saying that having the third baby is truly relaxed and enjoyable. Here's the part I liked, verbatim: "With your first, you're so apprehensive. With the second, you're worried about whether the older one will accept the younger. And then with the third, you know it's all going to work. So maybe it's that: People are having a third because they're enjoying it."
I think that for Kyle and I, this is the main reason we decided to go for number three. We know it's going to be hard, that we'll be up at night, up early in the morning, tired, cranky, and sex deprived. But I think that after two kids, we've finally learned how to discuss our needs and find a way to make sure each of us gets those needs met, whether I need extra time at the gym or he needs to sleep in on Saturday.
Right now, my C-section is scheduled for June 1, and I'm not sweating the details. The surgery is always a concern, and of course I'm praying for a healthy baby, but that's about all I'm worried about for now. I'm just so excited to meet this new little guy, to look into his eyes, to find out what his personality is all about. I really can't wait.
Compare that to what I felt when I was having Owen, which was a general trepidation of the unknown, or what I felt when I was pregnant with Stewart, which was intense guilt over how his arrival would affect Owen, combined with worry that I wouldn't love him as much (didn't turn out to be a problem:).
When Marylou surprised me with a baby shower in April, I nearly cried because it was so much fun to experience this pregnancy as a truly joyful time and to really celebrate the miracle of bringing a baby into the world, rather than feeling so anxious about it.
This was my first baby shower. It took three kids and six years in L.A. to finally have enough friends to throw me one (I'm not complaining- I got UPS packages from caring relatives and friends from across the country, but it's still not the same as having your friends and family in one room). I took it as an affirmation of all being right in my world- L.A. is now my home, motherhood is now my milieu and three kids is the perfect number for me.