I wake up to a blaring beeping alarm clock, with closed eyes and despondency I extend my hand to the alarm clock and unwillingly get out of my bed. What follows is a monotonous routine of getting my little munchkin ready for school amid other household things before leaving for work. The day ends with the same routine of hushing and rushing until my munchkin goes to sleep. But things have changed a lot from where they started, I mean my daughter is a bit grown up now which allows me time to do things I want to do. I have settled and accepted this new routine and yes my munchkin is adapting well to my lifestyle. So I am in a happy space right now!! I enjoy being with her, showing her the world as I see it, understanding the way she sees the world. Finally I have nights of sleep without hindrance, I can read a book, can plan outings and do many other things, I have fitted back into the dresses I wanted to wear, which I thought I probably would never be able to do.
Alas this happy content family bubble bursts every once in a while when we attend family functions or when my MIL meets her friends. All this is always followed by sulky looks on my MILs face and repeated rounds of discussions at home. If I count a slice of blueberry cheese cake every time someone asks me ‘when’ I am having a second child, ‘IF’ I am having a second child, ‘WHY’ am I not having a second child, TRUST me I would be able to open a factory of cheese cake, (That would be good thoughJ). From aunties at weddings, relatives at home, and even at times random friends of my MIL inquiring about the day of arrival of my second child. I am stupefied by the kind of concern they have in their voice when they are lecturing me about having the second child. I must say that some of the unsolicited advice are sane but sometimes the conversation gets way ahead from declaring me unfit for pregnancy, recommending treatments, even doctors who might be able help me out in the situation they think is disturbing me. They imagine in their own fantasy world that having another child is the main sole purpose of my life now and that I am thinking about it night and day!
And if in between the conversation you quip to these aunties that you are not planning a second child you are happy with one, congratulations you have been able to give them a heart attack (which I am sure their daughter in law will thank you for!!). Time suddenly stops, the earth shakes and you wish the earth had opened up to gulp you in before you spoke out what you were thinking, ALOUD. This response does not go well with them and then you have glaring relatives who have taken it up to them to make sure that you get pregnant (pun intended!!). They cannot imagine that their theory of you being infertile is incorrect that you have chosen not to have a second child. . Suddenly the whole universe is judging you on the decision of not having a sibling for your only child. It astounds me that all this interrogation is confined only to me, nobody ever asks my husband if we are planning the other one. His stand remains unchallenged, and even if someone asks him about the arrival of the second baby he conveniently puts the ‘Baby Venture’ on me. I feel like thrashing him there and then. Whatever happened to the ‘We are not having a second baby decision’.
Their audacity to ask and question me is unnerving at times, my husband and I have decided that a second child is not on our cards right now, both financially and emotionally. But the questioning and explaining has always put me into a dilemma, it is tough to stick to your guns which you are sure is right with suggestions pouring in from all directions. I have realized that the idea of a perfect family for me and others can be different, my aspirations and needs from my life are different. Having one child works for my little family, I have now known after the first baby that for me my space is very important, to let go of all the freedom, career, aspirations, and ambitions again is tough. Because whatever said and done it is the life of a woman that changes dramatically after having a child. Let us just say extending the family is not a simple decision, everyone has their own set of problems. I don’t think I am ready for another baby it is not me at the moment, later in life maybe. All said and done either don’t ask me the question or be ready for my response and accept it. Just that having a second child is a very personal thing.