just one

17 months

You’re racing fast toward a year and a half, and I can barely keep up with your frenetic development. Just yesterday, I said, “He’s not really running yet,” and today, you took off running (or what running looks like on those little toddler legs of yours) across a doctor’s office waiting room. I applaud your effort to contradict me.

Last week in the aftermath of our historic blizzard, we hauled you up to the top of the hill at the middle school so you could sled down it over and over again with Daddy and me taking turns running with you in the 30 inches that Jonas dumped on us 10 days ago or so. You giggled the whole way down. You kept saying “choo choo,” and we couldn’t figure out if you were calling the sled a choo choo or if you were telling us you wanted to go home and play with your train set, of which you’ve recently become a huge fan. But each time we arrived at the bottom of the hill, we’d ask “More?” and you’d say “More.” So we kept at it. Eventually, another family arrived with a toboggan and a couple of little boys. One was crawling straight down the hill. We got into conversation as we often do with other parents of little kids that wind up sharing space with you. The baby had just turned a year last Friday. The older kid was two and a half. The mom said they were 17 months apart. 17 months! That’s like if I were giving birth to another baby right this minute. I can’t even imagine.

Which is why we’ve decided we’re good with just one: just you. There are a lot of reasons for this, and it’s actually, strangely, kind of a relief to come to this conclusion. But we’re sure: Our little tribe feels quite complete as a trio.

I don’t at all intend this to be disparaging of those who have more than one child; to the contrary, I’m in awe of parents who manage with more than one. Actually, I’m in awe of parents, period. Especially the ones (and there are a lot of them in our life) who make it look effortless. It is by no means effortless on my part; it is effort-full. So I’ll call that Reason No. 1 that we’re good with one:

We are managing. Finally. After many, many, many months of kind of just barely scraping by. We feel like we’ve got this. We’ve succeeded if not conquered. We’re finally having fun! We’ve got an awesome schedule that we can pretty much bank on. We feel like normal humans again. And we’re just reluctant to start all of it over again from scratch. (Unlike many people, I wasn’t in love with the newborn stage. You were cute–the cutest!–and super cuddly, but this, this, is what I’ve been living for. I love toddler you! I love how you respond to us and play with us and have a personality and an opinion. And we can do stuff together. It’s the best.)

We like the idea of being able to focus solely on you. You’ve got our full attention and our full resources. We can both be there to support you, pick you up, cheer you on, help you out and everything else we need and want to do with you. And we can do it together, Daddy and me, at the same time. We don’t need to divide and conquer. And neither of us will ever miss any of your classes, games, recitals, performances or other shining moments because we’re doing the same for a sibling of yours.

We want and need a bigger house, which means a bigger mortgage. And daycare is expensive as all get-out. That’s with just one.

We love to travel, and we want to share our love of travel with you. Traveling is much more doable with just you, from both a resources and a logistics perspective.

Right now, you’re outnumbered. We often (more often than we’d care to admit) need four hands to wrangle you.

Everything we do, we do for you. Period. You are our raison d’etre. I don’t want you to have to share that (spoken like a true only child). And, while I know this is silly and completely irrational, I don’t know that I could love any other child as much as I love you.

You fit nicely into my Prius. And I will never need a minivan.

I could keep going, but I think you get the gist. Just one suits Daddy and me. I hope and pray, though, that it suits you, too. That you won’t feel like you’re missing something from your life.

So the answer from here on out to all those who will, inevitably, ask if or, worse, when we’re having a second child is: Nope. We’re good. Entirely complete just the way we are–with just you.



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