Someone once said you shouldn’t have more children than you have car windows. I find this highly surprising. Most cars have 6 windows, 7 if you include a sunroof. I firmly believe you should try to avoid being outnumbered by your children and more than two takes the challenge to a whole new level! This year, Pete and I decided to try and make a decision – twist or stick as the card game goes…
Unsuprisingly, we researched, talked, thought, worried, hoped, talked some more and more and more – before making the decision to expand. We had always wanted two children but the decision seemed more difficult after Smiling Flower’s complex start. She needs, and deserves on account of her pure determination(!), a lot of time and attention, and we feel the subsequent drain on energy levels.
Mums at my local disability group and parents at the CHARGE conference who had more than one child spoke unanimously in favour of siblings and most know far more about exhaustion than we do! Smiling Flower adores her cousin Zach. Nobody inspires giggles quite like he does, and it seems obvious that her very own brother or sister would (mostly!) be a source of great joy to her.
So our motto became ‘short term pain, long term gain’ and we went for it! Consequently, my stomach is expanding, and it isn’t all a cake / chocolate / cheese related event. There is a tiny baby in there too – just a little bit longer than a pen apparently at 20 weeks.
We saw the baby bean in black and white in great detail two weeks ago. Most ‘parents to be’ love their scans but we were just plain nervous as it was at this point that the radiographers picked up ‘anomalies’ with Smiling Flower. The relief then was palpable, the loss of tension uplifting and the sudden lack of adrenaline exhausting… when the scan finished without anyone saying ‘we just need a closer look.’
In some ways, loving Smiling Flower so completely, I feel guilty for hoping this baby won’t have the same complexities to overcome. But, if we could do anything in the world, it would be to take Smiling Flower’s complete deafness away, to protect her from potential isolation, and any added difficulties in life. We decided we would cope whatever happened, however hard it was, but, as one of my favourite quotes goes – courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear… (Mark Twain)
Fear ebbs and flows in our family – like it does in most I imagine. But we thought you’d like to know – if you are following our family – it is growing and this week, the fear is falling.