I was looking back through the photos on my phone the other day – like a lot of other bloggers probably do, I must take hundreds in a month on my iPhone alone. I found myself looking through the photos I took when Mason was a newborn. I love photos of my babies as newborns, especially the ones I’m in, even if they are only selfies. You can see my tired eyes and lack of makeup, but also the pride, and total love and adoration in my eyes for this tiny human.
The plan was always three children – well for me anyway. Obviously having lost Sophie at 24 weeks gestation, changed it slightly. I will always be a Mum to four. I often wonder how I got through my pregnancy with Ollie after losing her, and also my pregnancy with Mason, but there was never a question of not having any more children. Ollie arrived the same year that we lost Sophie, in 2012, and he healed a bit of our broken hearts and put our family back together in a way only a rainbow baby can.
When he turned 18 months that familiar pang, and longing for another baby reared its head again, and although Ell did take a bit of convincing (I think with me being a stay at home mum and him being the sole breadwinner it is a lot of pressure) – but we were ecstatic when we fell pregnant with Mason, and he was born in May 2015. Mason completed our family. At least I think he did.
He will always be the baby. He will be two in three months. This is the oldest one of my babies has been when I haven’t been pregnant again. After Mason started to out grow things – his Moses basket, crib, Jumperoo – we sold them. I was ok with that. Now I’m not so much.
Lately I don’t feel ready to say goodbye to having a baby – to know I won’t be pregnant, give birth, have a newborn again, actually leaves a physical ache in my tummy – or is it my ovaries maybe?
We don’t have the room or the funds for another baby. That doesn’t mean my heart will get in line with my head.
In reality, I’ve just turned 30, who knows what will happen in a few years – we may have moved, and have more room to have another baby. I’ve been told that after what we went through losing our second daughter, I should let sleeping dogs lie, I’m so incredibly lucky and blessed to have three happy, healthy, gorgeous children. I don’t agree.
I was born to be a mum – that sounds daft, but after having my children, I found myself – although it is hard at times, it is also so incredible – each day is different and brings new challenges, and every day I’m so thankful to be able to stay at home with them and watch them grow into amazing little people – albeit people who sometimes pee on my Laura Ashley rug!
What worries me is, say I do have another baby, what if the feeling of not being done doesn’t go away?
I thought I’d ask some other lovely Mums and Bloggers about how they felt about being ‘done’ having babies. Here is what they had to say…
‘ I always thought I’d never ever feel “done” but after having my son then having twin girls, I definitely feel happy with my lot. I already feel like I’m spreading myself thin with my three so I feel it wouldn’t be fair on them to have another. I feel sad but after having newborn twins glad I don’t have to go back to hectic baby days! ‘ Beth at Twinderelmo
‘My husband had a vasectomy after our 4th but I don’t think I’ll ever feel ‘done’ even though I know it’s not possible to have another. I always feel broody, and I’ll admit to feeling jealous when I hear of others being pregnant.’ Chantelle at Mama Mummy Mum
‘My partner kind of made the decision for me. Before my son I never wanted children but after my son I was so desperate for a second. My first pregnancy ended with me having pre eclampsia and my son being born 10 weeks early. My second pregnancy ended in a full term VBAC but then I haemorrhaged pretty badly. My partner decided to have the snip as he was concerned about losing me if we had another. Never sure if it was the thought of losing me or the thought of looking after 3 kids alone that scared him the most.’ Kelly at Nature Mum Blog
‘We felt done as soon as we found out the sex of our second & knew we’d have the ‘perfect pair’/one of each. My husband’s just had the snip at 28 so no going back now!’ Charlotte at The Home That Made Me
‘I genuinely considered myself done after two until I had an accidental pregnancy and was gutted at first then came round to the idea just before I miscarried. After that I felt like something was missing and decided I wanted one more. I think I am done now. Now I am a single mum though I suddenly feel like one day I might meet someone who could change my mind. I think it is hard to say you are finished when you never know what life is going to throw at you! ‘ Carly at Mummy & The Chunks
‘I always said I was never having children until I had my first at 18. Then I was never having another until I met my husband and we decided we wanted a child so had my second at 30. Then I knew I was done. I love babies and children, but the pregnancies were very difficult both times.’ Angela at The Life of Spicers
‘I didn’t feel we were done until my youngest was around 3. Even though I was told by the doctors that it wouldn’t be safe to have another. As he got older the thought of juggling 3 boys and a baby was enough for me to say that’s it‘ Louise at A Strong Coffee
‘I can now cuddle a newborn without getting the pang, something that has never happened in the last 18 years, but after seven children I am finally done!’ Mandi at Hex Mum Blog
‘I’m done because it’s the best thing for my family. We were told shortly after we found out we were pregnant with twins that there is an increased chance of multiples in future pregnancies, and whilst I might have tried to persuade my husband to take our family from three to four, three to five just feels a different ball game. Added to this, I’m the working mum, he’s the stay-at-home dad, it’s not my decision. But I have not only the usual broodiness, but a yearning on behalf of my boys that they will never be ‘big brothers’- they completely love babies and toddlers. So, I don’t think you necessarily know ‘you’re done’ if our circumstances were different, etc.etc. but that’s what happens when you become a family, it’s not about one person, it’s about appreciating each of you.’ Debbie at An Organised Mess
‘I think it totally depends on the person. For me, having lost my second son at full term (stillborn) I worried that I would never feel done. Through fifteen miscarriages and three healthy children, it took for me almost losing my fifth baby at birth to realise that I was done. It was only then that I realised that feeling done and feeling complete were two very different things for a bereaved parent. I won’t ever feel that my family is complete because Joseph isn’t here. But am I done having babies? Absolutely!‘ Laura at Five Little Doves
‘After I had my second, I still looked at newborns and felt broody. I reassured myself after every milestone reached that maybe we would do it again with a third child. I imagined myself pregnant, and it felt like it would be right. Now, after having had that third child I don’t feel broody, and whilst I feel kind of choked up every time she reaches a milestone and I know it will be the last time we experience that with a child, I also don’t feel like I want to do it again. I work as an antenatal teacher and breastfeeding counsellor and I get to talk a lot about babies, and see a lot of newborns – but generally now I’m just glad that I get to hand them back after a cuddle rather than feeling the longing for another myself. That’s how I know we are done.’ Lauren at Mummy is a Gadget Geek
‘Whenever anyone asks me am I done I say no (I’ve got 2 boys close in age and young) and then they ask how many I want.. I just answer with I don’t know, I’ll know when I’ve had my fill.. (don’t know how many children it will take but I’m sure that I’ll know when the time comes.’ Jade at Raw Childhood
‘It is difficult isn’t it. I would love to have more, I certainly don’t feel done with regards to having more children. But, we wont have any more. I had HELLP syndrome and almost died giving birth to the twins, and we were told that I have a high chance of having HELLP again if I have any more. So, for us that means we are done, I don’t want to leave my kids without a mum for the chance to have more children. So I don’t feel done, but I am done. I find it a little hard to get my head around sometimes and I need to push those broody thoughts to the back of my head and ignore it.’ Yvonne at Double Monkey Business
‘I’ve just had my third and i know I’m done. Physically and mentally don’t think I could cope with another pregnancy or the lack of sleep!’ Natalie at Meme and Harri
‘I swing backwards and forwards wildly between knowing I’m done and wanting another so… I don’t know. For some reason I have it in my head that I was have some kind of lightning bolt on my 30th birthday and know for sure what to do. Only 8 months to go! ‘ Louise at Squished Blueberries
‘I knew I was done after one! A traumatic birth and then a baby with colic that didn’t sleep through the night until she was 13 months was enough to put me off any more!’ Sarah at Digital Motherhood
‘I was certain I was done and I have four. I’ve been convinced since my last baby 6 years ago, and having him was a lengthy decision. However, the last few months I have found myself entertaining the idea of having another but know financially it’d be hard, which actually still wouldn’t stop me. I think I’m done but could be swayed.’ Sherry at Kits & Vixen
‘I don’t feel done I’d love another at some point but my husband is not keen.I just want to have one last pregnancy and one more chance of having a newborn, I’m only 33 it feels wrong convincing my ovaries I’m done when I’m so broody!’ Helen at Beautiful Things
‘I dont feel broody anymore so that for me says I am done. After having a very easy first baby (boy) we had our 2. one (a girl to everybody’s surprise because she is the second girl in my husbands family for 24yrs) and she is very hard work (even still with nearly 3) i think that put me off having another one and now I am happily just being a Aunty instead! I sold all my baby clothes and I feel relieved its all gone! (My husbands thinks otherwise and wants a 3rd one!)’ AK at The German Wife
‘I thought I was done a month ago but now I’m not sure again. I’m so sad at the thought of never being pregnant and going through the newborn stage again but I have two gorgeous girls; 2 works for us and do I want to go again? I’m just not sure, so people say to me, I’m not done!!’ Sarah at Run, Jump, Scrap
‘I always said I wanted three children and feel so lucky that’s what we have. However, ever since number three was born I have had a longing for another one. For various reasons, I don’t think it will happen but I think I’m just one of those people who will always have that urge for another baby. I’m always broody! Some of us are just wired that way! I have good friends who are absolutely certain they don’t want another baby. My one friend said although she loves cuddling newborns she is quite happy to give the baby back and doesn’t get that aching in her womb. I still get that! So I guess some of us can know in our heads we are done having babies, even though it’s not quite what our hearts are saying!‘ Cathryn at Cardiff Mummy Says
‘I completely don’t feel done, but like you it might be out of our control. I’d love a third, not just yet but in a few years. However my waters broke at 29 weeks and my baby was early, the chances of this happening again are high and I don’t think I could emotionally go through that again.’ Emily at Babies and Beauty
‘I think you do know when you’re done, be that a physical thing or financially and emotionally. I’ve had 5 pregnancies, 3 live children. I had my last one at great risk because I didn’t feel done but now I do.’ Jenny at Midwife and Life
In conclusion, I still don’t know where I stand – Ell has been convinced to discuss it again in a years time – I’m hoping by then the ‘broody’ feeling will have either intensified or gone away! I can’t imagine now having another one of these though…kind of keeping my fingers crossed for another Brushneen baby (sorry Ell)!
Thank you to everyone who was kind enough to contribute to this post – and please check out their blogs.