Even as my heart tightens around every little baby thing my growing daughter does, because I know the days are getting faster and it hasn't even been a year yet, I feel this space in my heart growing for our next child.
It's a bit conflicting, this feeling. A desire, really. Verging on a hope.
Dare I ask for another?
I have this amazing, perfect little girl who looks like her daddy and has my stubborn streak and a smile straight from heaven and I am definitely not bored raising her. It is one thing to be content and just "see what happens," but it's another thing (for me, at least) to step into the hope zone again.
People have asked me how many kids I want to have and how far apart I want them to be. I tell them, "We've gone through too much to suppose our wants have anything to do with it." Seriously, if it had been completely up to me, I would've been married at 20 and finished having/adopting 8 kids by 30 (math and science weren't my strongest subjects)!
Thank GOD that was not His plan for me! I look at my Ayla Jewel and am so grateful. SO Grateful for the very day my first child was born and every day of her life that has been when it is. Do you know what I mean? And if she's all we get, then we will be full and grateful.
I mean, look at her:
I have friends with different kinds of stories of how their families grew. They have decided to get pregnant and have done so. They have decided to have kids so many months apart and have done so. I'm so very happy for them.
I have friends who, like us, who walked the infertility road for some time, got pregnant, then their bodies "figured it out," and it never was a problem again. I know others who experience miscarriages between every full-term pregnancy, or just have long, unexplained waits every time. I know others who are "one and done."
Of course, there's no way for me to know what my body is going to do or how long the wait for Ayla's sibling will be. I don't know if said sibling will be birthed or adopted. I don't even know what's going to happen tomorrow!
I'm okay with not knowing the when, the who, the how. I hope I learned something in the 3 1/2 years we waited for Ayla.
What I don't know if I'm okay not knowing (follow me?) is the if. If we will in fact have a who somehow somewhen.
I'm pretty sure our family isn't complete yet. I may not want 8 kids anymore, but how can I not want to see if luck would hit us again with another angel baby? I see how much Ayla loves people, how great she is around other kids and I know she would be a fantastic big sister. I think of how much I love being a big sister (and a little sister, too) (had to put that in because my older brothers are two of the 10 people who read my blog), and I want that for her.
These are my thoughts as we speed down the track to complete this first-year lap. What did I learn during the pre-Ayla season? What lessons about hoping and waiting stuck and which will I have to learn all over again? I know I didn't write about my One Word very much in 2011, but it was ask and I did learn to be a better asker. So, am I ready to ask for this? For Ayla to be a big sister?
Gratefully, simply, humbly, in whispers and with a longing I don’t quite understand,