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Why Have More Kids?

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WhyHaveMoreKidsQuestion: why do people have more than one kid? If you consider this question from a logical standpoint, why would anyone put themselves through that pain and agony a second time? Or a third time? Or more? Some blame birth amnesia, saying that post-birth hormones make moms forget about the pain they just experienced. I don’t believe in that sort of amnesia. Nearly seven years later, I still remember the moment the first full-intensity contraction gripped my body. I also remember turning to my husband in the midst of back labor and asking, “Why do women do this to themselves a second time?”

But I became that woman.

Two years later, I was standing in the hospital, experiencing back labor once again, and asking, “Why did we do this again?”

And then came number three.

During my third labor, I reached that point in transition where I didn’t know if I could do it anymore. I didn’t know if I had the strength or focus to continue. But then I realized that I was so close. I told myself, “Just push out this baby NOW and you are done. No more labor. No more delivery. No more contractions. You. Are. Done. Just PUSH!” Moments later, I was holding my baby girl.

Of course we don’t make family planning decisions based on the pain of labor or the experiences of pregnancy. Pregnancy does eventually come to an end (regardless of how that ninth month may feel) and contractions will stop. Having a child is much more than those fleeting moments even if the memories of discomfort never leave us.

So, why do we choose to have more kids? Here are what a few moms had to say:

I’d have to say it’s been mostly a “feeling,” as obscure as that sounds. It’s just a sense of not being done, like God was telling us we still had more children to have. We just didn’t feel “at peace” with being done. We actually considered it many times in between our first and second and before we decided to have a third, but each time it just felt wrong. I actually loved labor and delivery with our second, much more so than with our first, and the chance to do that again is strangely appealing to me. Call me crazy! ~ Alicia Bottorff, mother of two and currently trying for number three

Scott & I always knew that we wanted more than 1 child. I had originally thought I wanted 4 kids, but after parenting one, I changed my mind to 2 kids being my limit. It had nothing to do with carrying the baby for 9 months or labor and delivery because, quite frankly, it wasn’t that bad. It was solely based upon the amount of time, money and patience children require. I love my daughter dearly, but she can be quite the handful at times. I guess the reason for us wanting to have more than one child is that we wanted them to be connected to another human being after we are gone. It is great having friends, but there is something about having a sibling that is just different. They have known you most all of your life and will love you no matter what. Plus, Scott also said he thinks we are just gluttons for punishment. ~ Allison Grenert, mother of one and expecting number two

For my husband and I, the decision to have more children was one we took very seriously. We knew we didn’t want to have just one and that our first son deserved to have a sibling and what we would hope to be a “best friend.” We looked at adoption and had gone so far as to get information from the state of Indiana about children available for adoption. When we weighed the risks and benefits of both sides, we ultimately choose to go through with having another baby on our own. We had the support of our family and friends, and felt like we knew what we were up against. For me, labor was the easy part. I’m convinced my body was made to deliver babies, but not to carry them. I remember there being an instantaneous relief from the constant nausea I’d been experiencing for months on end after my first delivery. That combined with the love I felt for our son was encouragement enough to do it just one more time. ~ Jami Kamp, mother of two, who experienced hyperemesis gravidarum during her pregnancies

The biggest factor for me was that my kids would always have “built-in buddies.” I experienced it in my family and wanted it for my own kids. ~ Anonymous mother of three-and-a-half

You never forget the pain, but you also don’t forget how amazing all the little moments of watching them grow up are. The pain sort of takes on a beautiful patina because it’s part of your life as a parent. ~ Emily Pate Austin

I had #1 naturally (no drugs) and my first thought was all other children would need to be adopted. But somehow went on to have twins and another singleton. Mother nature knows something we don’t! ~ Andie Lague

I also somehow think the pain and suffering of pregnancy and delivery help build our love as mothers for our offspring. It forms an unconditional love as the foundation from the beginning. The blessings and enhancement to our lives that children uniquely bring FAR outweigh any short term suffering. Simply put: children are the ultimate blessing! ~ Lena Marie Mekhael

 What about you? Did you decide to have more than one child? If so, why?

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