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When I told my mother of dinner during our regular weekly visit that I was pregnant with my second child, she said nothing. I mean nothing – she didn’t talk to me for 2 hours. I was on the way home, when she called to ask me how far along I was. She felt that it was irresponsible of us to have kids so close in age (my kids are 21 months apart). I didn’t feel that she had the right to tell me such things. She felt that she knew better. Fast forward 2 years – my house is a crazy place, the kids are wild, and I cannot see myself living any other way. But people are different – check out what other moms think. (This week’s moms include Mariah from Formula Mom, LaVonne from Long Wait for Isabella, Gena from Life with Captain Fussybuckets, Tonya from Bringing Up Hopkins, Ghada from Mama Goes BAM, Darcy from Tales From the Nursery, Sarah from East 9th Street, Cyndy from Mama Does It All, Valerie from Valerie’s Reviews, Leila from The Go To Mommy, Emily from Nap Time is My Time, and Lena from Way2GoodLife.)
LaVonne: I have always wanted 2 children. Before I had my first, I had a plan to have 2 children two years apart. Then my Princess came and I realized I could not have a 2-year-old and a newborn. So for our family, we decided to put it off a lot longer. We wanted a “big girl” who could be a helper, potty trained, and could listen and reason (somewhat). I am now pregnant with number 2. We planned to get pregnant in September and I got pregnant the first month we tried. (Whoohoo!) So now my children will be 4.5 years apart. I know that is a bit far, but for our family this will work very well.
Mariah: I am thinking along the helper lines too LaVonne. I hope boys are helpful! I do worry sometimes that we will have trouble getting pregnant a second time even though we got it the first month we tried with W. So sometimes that worry creeps up on me and makes me want to start trying! My little sister was born when I was 8 so 4.5 years doesn’t sound too bad to me!
LaVonne: My sister and I are 5 years apart. When we were young we played well together and got a long well. When I became a teen, we didn’t get a long so well. So I am just praying that my two do well together. Also, it took me five months to get pregnant with my first after I got off birth control. So this time, I quit the birth control 5 months before September. We then tried the month of September and it worked for us! By September 29, I took a test and it was positive. So I am happy, this baby is coming in June and we have June, July and August off work to be home as a family!
Mariah: I love that the timing worked out for you! That is also something J and I have planned. With W we wanted to wait so he would be born closer to the end of the school year since I teach and have summers off. But I turned 30 and heard that biological clock start ticking so we got started a bit earlier and ended up with a December baby! It actually worked out very well for us though.
Gena: My oldest had just turned 2 when Baby D was born. It took about 7 months to get our first, so we started trying when he turned 1, thinking it would take a long time. Well, it took about 4 months and I have to say, that was the perfect time for us. This is silly, but our oldest went down to one nap just in time so I could nap with him. (Hello, first trimester exhaustion!) But besides that, he has always, always loved his baby brother and wanted to help out. He was potty trained at 2 1/2 and that was a bit annoying, but we cloth diaper and to me, it was no big deal. We do want a third and I think we’ll start trying when Baby D is 18 months old or more. I like that the boys are close in age and don’t want to wait too long.
Mariah: Oh Gena, you are an angel! That just sounds exhausting! One wears me out! I bet you have it down to an art though!
Gena: It’s much easier now. When D was a few months old, I thought I would lose my mind! Mariah, I planned to have a May baby so it would all line up with school (I was a K teacher) and yup, didn’t happen! But I’m glad it happened when it did!
Tonya: I started getting the itch to have another when my first was around 3, but my hubby did not. We fought about it for about 6 months when our relationship took a turn for the worse. About 6 months apart made him change his mind. It took me 3 months to get pregnant with our 2nd. Our first was almost 5! Right after Gage was born I was ready for another because I just didn’t feel complete. I talked to J and my mom who said go for it. We started trying when Gage was 4 months. It has now going on 14 months and still trying for number 3.
Ghada: I have a friend who has 4 under 5 and I don’t know how she does it. Like LaVonne and Mariah I really wanted my son to be a helper. My sister and I are 4 years apart and my husband and his sisters are all 3 years apart, so that is the average we are working with. My son was 4 in September and I had my daughter in November. It’s been perfect for me. My big boy loves to help out, so he’s felt really important the whole way through.
Gena: Tonya, I’m sorry to hear that it’s taking so long. I wish you luck!! I read yesterday that the more kids you have, the less work you have to do, because the kids entertain each other. I don’t know how true that is, but I do feel like I get a break when both boys are awake and can play with each other. But in a few years when they fight like crazy? Oy.
Mariah: Tonya, I wish you luck as well. That is my fear about the timing thing but then I worry that if we start trying earlier we will end up with two when I’m not quite ready! Ghada, 4 under 5! That is crazy to me! I know that some people love it though! Gena, I suppose I can see that but I am just thinking about the baby stage! Ahhh!
Darcy: I heard that too, Gena, and I think it is true! I don’t have to “work” so hard when Rissa is playing with her cousins or at a playgroup. They watch out for each other and entertain each other so I don’t have to!
We wanted to start trying for #2 once Rissa turned one, but have delayed it until she’s about 18 months because of flying in August. It took 3 years to conceive our first so we have no idea if we can have another or how long it will take. Right now I almost wish she had a two to play with! And she just loves babies!
Gena: That was another thing, Darcy. Our oldest LOVES babies and always has, so we kinda knew he was going to like his brother. He never went through any kind of big jealousy thing, really, so it was nice.
Sarah: Tonya, I feel for you. We’ve been trying for 13 months. I started clomid and had a good progesterone level yesterday so we’ll see! When my daughter was 6 weeks old I wanted another one right away but quickly realized, I wouldn’t be able to handle it for a variety of reasons but also because I wanted to have time with just my daughter and me. So while I wish I was pregnant now and having another baby before she turns 3 in August, I’m glad we’re having our girl time.
Cyndy: I had a very difficult pregnancy (issues with a shortened and shortening cervix). After just 4 months, I was on partial bedrest and then at 6 months, I was on complete bedrest. After talking with my doctor and realizing that if I were to have another, it would likely be almost 9 months on bedrest, we stopped at one. I am lucky that Gwen has a brother and a sister from my husband’s previous marriage.
Tonya: Sarah, at my annual in August my doctor didn’t offer anything because he said there was no reason I couldn’t get pregnant that I was extremely healthy and able to get pregnant. Sometimes I wish he did offer clomid.
Valerie: I didn’t plan either one of my kids, my first was a complete surprise and my second was a when it happens it happens. That said my youngest was born 3 months before my oldest turned 3, and it was so hard at first but now that they are 4 and 7 it is the perfect spacing. They are the best of friends and I love it. Also, I do think it is easier with more than 1 (if they get along) because they play together and keep each other entertained.
Leila: My sisters and I are just about 4 years apart and did not get along growing up so I wanted my kids to be closer in age. My 2 are 28 months exactly (12/27 and 4/27) and they get along great. I will admit, in the beginning it was hard having two little ones, but they are super close (girl and boy) and I love it. I want #3, but hubby says no. Unfortunately for him (fortunately for me) I am 99% sure that I am currently pregnant with #3 (happy dance for me). I am scared and happy at the same time. I like that we have a boy and a girl already and they are getting at that age where we can do more stuff with them and as a family without having to worry about baby things. We have a 3 bedroom house so if #3 does come along, we will need to bunk up some kids which bothers me, but doesn’t at the same time. Financially we live paycheck to paycheck because we have not been smart. I am currently making a plan that we will abide to so that we can afford #3. I have pro’s and con’s that I go back and forth about and my biggest concern is when to know if it’s a good time. Then again, it is never a good time and I believe that my God will take care of me and my family and never give me anything I can’t handle. On another note, my daughter just turned 6 (she will turn 7 a few months after #3 is born if I am currently pregnant) and my son will turn 4 in April so they will be a good gap that I am hoping my kids will be helpers. Only now I will need #4 close in age to #3!
Emily: Our son just turned 2.5. My husband asked if I was ready for another, I am not sure. I love the time I have with my son, just the two of us. My husband was in India for one month, we got pregnant right when he returned. He’ll be traveling a bit with his new job, maybe we’ll be blessed with a second without really trying?!
Leila: That’s kind of my take on it too. I figure what’s going to happen is going to happen so why not just let things take its course. I mean, I was on birth control from the time of having my son until a couple of months ago and just didn’t have the time/money to go back to the doctor. So we used condoms. Of course, he didn’t ALWAYS use one, but my thoughts were if its meant to be, it will be!
Lena: My kids are 21 months apart. The second one was a little bit a ahead of the schedule. I think I started itching on having the second one, when my first one was about 9 months or so. My sister and I are 11 years apart and I growing up was always lonely and wishing for sibling. That is why I really wanted to have kids close together. My kids are 4 and 2. They keep each other busy. They seem to have a lot in common. But don’t take me wrong — they are a lot of work. I recently told my friend, we had kids so close together before we realized how much work they are.
Tamara: As far as if your kids will get along because of the distance between them you can not predict, they each have their own personalities and some clash if they are close or far apart. My oldest two (11.5 months apart) are not close at all they can hardly be in the same room for more than a minute before they start bickering. The little two (14.5 months apart) get along great 95% of the time.
Here you have it – I think only you can decide what is the best time for you and your opinion might be different from what your parents and friends think. Your kids might have a different take on this, but hey, we are the parents after all
Expecting mom? New mom? Know one?
Check out tips, tricks, and other great articles on Advice for a New Mom page