I ponder and agonize over the question of whether or not I would want another baby on a daily basis. Within a single day I am likely to think, "Absolutely not! How would we ever manage it? It's all too risky!" and then, "But I just want to! Lu would LOVE to have a sibling!" Chad, on the other hand is not so torn and likes things the way they are. One night, as I was talking about this subject he said, "Will you ever have enough things to take care of?!" I said I probably won't. I just love taking care of things! Plants, animals, humans...I love them all!
The insurance finally approved the testing that needs to be done to see if I am a carrier of Rett Syndrome. There is a less than one percent chance that I am. Within the rest of the 99% of causes for Rett Syndrome, there is a 1-2% chance that just some of my eggs have the mutation or just some of Chad's sperm do. Obviously, that cannot be accurately tested, so it is always a question mark. The rest of that 99% of the cause for Rett Syndrome (and other similar genetic mutations) was just a fluke. It just happened. The chances are very small that it would just happen again, but it could. There could be a fluke that causes a completely different condition, and this is a possibility in every pregnancy for every person. Reproduction is just very risky business.
Last night I finally (hopefully) came to a conclusion. What I realized is that like Chad, I also like things just the way they are. I like being able to give my full attention to Lu and do everything I can to help her succeed, and I don't think I want it to be any different. Besides her dad, she is literally the most awesome person in the world, and I just love to be with her. However, I spend so much time each day just caring for her, feeding her, giving her bottles, etc., that I worry a second child would not get enough attention. What I think I am having trouble getting over is that if things were different, we would likely have made a sibling for Lu already. We love being parents, and regardless of Chad's predictable apprehension of all big changes, he probably would've trusted me that it would be okay to have two children. But, as it stands, I think it will just stay the three of us.
Someone asked me the other day if our hesitation is because we would be sad to have another child with a disability, if the unlikely happened and a second child also had Rett or something else. The answer is no. The reason is that I would feel guilty for all of eternity that I brought another human into this world that will have to live as challenging a life as Lucy does. Many people take the risk, even after having a child with a disability, but we just don't feel it is something we are willing to do.
I like to use analogies sometimes, so here is one about how I feel about procreation in general:
Let's pretend you are in a grocery store and you see someone you think that you know and trust. You wave, start over toward them as they wave back and smile, and then just as you reach them and are preparing to say hello, they punch you right in the face. That's how I feel about pregnancy and reproduction. My pregnancy went relatively fine. Labor was a little difficult and ended in an emergency C-section, but then Lu was here and she was healthy and happy and we said, "Whew! Everything is fine." Fast forward a year and pow right in the kisser! Nothing was actually "fine" and we didn't even know it. Below are two of my favorite pictures from the hospital. I love them and have them in frames, but every single time I look at them it makes me remember how we were deceived by putting our trust in the idea that reproduction will always run smoothly.
I really would love to have another baby, but I just can't trust the process anymore. I don't trust it and even though I am having a lot of trouble getting over how much I'd love to make a sibling for Lu, it is about a zillion times harder for me to ever feel like I could trust something that betrayed us so sneakily already.