When my husband and I first got engaged we had the talk. You know, the one where you discuss what you want for the future. A house with a picket fence, 2 kids, a dog….all that stuff. At that time, I wanted 4 kids, he wanted 2. We jokingly compromised with 3.
Fast forward, a few years and I have 2 wonderful girls. I’m happy, he’s happy. He’s done, I’m not sure. Baby #2 was colicky, an overall rough baby, but I still want to keep the door open. At this time, I had been running my daycare for a few years and always had a baby to care for. This helped, a lot! I mentioned a few times through the years that I wanted another baby, my husband always said no, we were done.
Around the time, my youngest daughter turned 3 an ache kicked in. Like something was missing. I’d cry when I’d see a baby, or when someone announced they were pregnant. Commercials would make me tear up. I’d hold others babies and just cry wanting another one of my own. I didn’t understand why I felt this way. Why couldn’t I be happy for others? Why couldn’t I be content with the 2 healthy children I had?
I began whining, crying, and praying that God would change my husband’s mind. I told him we could “try for a boy”. That didn’t work.
I got the girls on board begging their dad for a baby brother. That didn’t work.
I threw up the fact that when we were engaged we had compromised on 3, and he was going against that compromise. That didn’t work.
I began to pray and asked God to take the ache away. To let me be content with what I had. Or, to soften my husband’s heart. Eventually, after months of the ache, God worked on my husband’s heart, and I became pregnant with my son.
I promised my husband that was it. No more babies. He had given me our compromise child, and we were done. I cherished those first few years with my boy. My girls laughed because I told them we were going to spoil him, he was our last baby. I sold or gave away our baby things as soon as he was done with them.
But, deep down, I have wanted another child. My baby just turned 3. The ache has been back again in full force. Only this time, I know we are done. The ache is different this time because I know it is final. I can’t get my husband to compromise again. We have what we agreed on. Our house is small, money is tight, I should be happy and content with the three kids I have right?
But, the ache is still there. Constant. Every time I see a baby. When I hold a baby. Or look at pictures of our kids as babies. The ache comes. Eyes tear up. And I wish. I hope. I ache. This blogger put my thoughts into words, and I am so grateful:
I don’t know that we ever lose that ache. I don’t know if we ever get rid of it. I don’t know if we should. Maybe it’s meant to be there with us. So I’m learning to live with The Ache now.
The Ache reminds me of the great and terrible beauty I have seen, of what love I have experienced, of the sorrow and brokenness of loss, of all the love that is still here, of the wonder and miracle of life, of the sweetness of co-creation, of the labour and release, of transcendence. ~Sarah Bessey
The ache is different this time, though. I no longer feel “empty” or like “someone” is missing. I’m able to be happy for my friends when they announce pregnancies, and I can hold a baby without crying. It’s different, but the ache is still there.
I have read before on others blogs and talked to other moms, and I know this ache is normal. That makes me feel somewhat better about it, but I’ve had to come to terms with it myself.
Moms, I am telling you that even if the ache is normal we can let it eat away at our happiness, our contentment, and even our marriages. We have to find contentment in what we have. We have to learn to live with the ache. How am I doing it? I shared that here in Part 2: Dealing with the Ache.