Three is the New Two

When I was little -- and frankly well into high school and college -- I always imagined I'd have three or four kids. It was only as I began to realize that I might not have any at all that I started scaling back those dreams, first to one and then, tentatively to two. Now, it seems like more and more of our friends and acquaintances are ending up with three kids. And it makes it somewhat harder to be content with the two we have (even though writing that seems wrong. I love my two beyond imagining) and I find myself daydreaming, just a bit, about a third. To the point that I brought it up with Tim. He didn't get the deer in the headlights look I expected, honestly, but he didn't jump up and down for joy, either.

And I get that. I do.

For normal people, deciding to add another child to your family goes something like this. "Hey...let's have another baby." Then there might be some discussion here, but ultimately the positive response ends up being along the lines of "Okay...can we start trying now?" And then, after throwing caution to the wind, in another month or two (or hey, let's be nutty and say three), boom, baby on the way. If you don't get a wholeharted endorsement of the third, then you might get a more tempered response like, "Well...why don't we just not try NOT to have another and see what God does." And then, within six or eight months, more than likely, you end up with a baby on the way. No muss, no fuss.

Even for slightly less normal people (those of you who might need a little medical push to conceive), the conversation takes the turn of "Okay...schedule your appointment." And then, after one or two months and some annoying but really not all that terrible injections, time in a room (for the hubby), way too much time in the stirrups (for the wife), and $5-15K (some of which your insurance might cover if you happen to be very lucky), you end up with a baby on the way (and these days if you don't end up with a baby on the way, most people have at least a partial refund policy.)

For us, it ends up being a conversation that lasts a lot longer. Because you're back to do we want to consider international this time (Thought about it. Looked into it. Honestly, what's up with all the countries that have BMI limits for adopting now? If you're more than 15 pounds overweight, no thank you, we'd rather keep our children in an orphanage. Oookay.) or go back to the same attorneys? Or find a different place? Go back to an agency? Even if you resolve those questions, then you're looking at the paperwork (which you get the joy of doing all from scratch each time), the money (no guarantee with refund like with infertility treatments when you adopt), and the wait. And that's where a lot of the questions arise. How long do you wait? Our first child took a year. Not so bad - pretty close to a traditional birth. Second child? 3 years. Would a birth parent even choose a family who already has two kids? How long would it take? If we're multiplying by 3 each time, do we want to wait 9 years? (Answer to 9 years is categorically no. I don't want to be pushing 50 with an infant. But do I want to be 43? 45? How old is too old?) And by the time you've though about even half of those questions for a minute each...you're exhausted and desperately wishing you could "Ooops! Honey, we adopted a baby!"

And so three may be the new two -- and that desire for a third might be there lurking around the edges...but I'm thinking for us, most likely, two is going to be the old two, unless God drops something in our laps.

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