Family planning*

I originally set out to write about that my son is a total and utter klingon these days.? Other mothers were jealous at my child’s ability to play by himself for long stretches of time.? So well that I was able to get things done, like laundry, if the mood so struck me.? Not now.? This morning I walked out of the boy’s sight line to put a cookbook away and he followed saying, “where’s mama?”? So not only do I have a constant play by play man, an occasional color guy (the trusty husband) I now have a 3′ leg monkey.? So there’s the klingon report.

Although I started out to write about the boy I did my usual routine and read everyone’s blogs until the caffeine kicked in. On occasion you guys seem to redirect my original train of thought to something else.? Either that or I get distracted easily.? I’ll go with the latter for $500 Alex.

Chou2 had an interesting post about adoption being Plan A.? If you’ve been reading my stuff for a while you will know that I am not the kind of gal to go about being a lab rat in the name of reproduction.? That’s me.? My body, I get to do with it what I want.? That being said,? I did try to get pregnant at one point.? It didn’t work.? Rather than pursue expensive fertility testing and treatments we moved to adoption.? We didn’t so much think of this as Plan B, but rather a deviation on Plan A.? Blah, blah, blah, insert whole reproductive history post here. (Wow, that took a while to find)? Now you know how we got from not pregnant to Toddler 2.0 in 2 years.

At this point you are asking me, “Elle, why are you rehashing stuff that we already knew about?”? Gah, I’m getting there.? Have you ever known me to tell a story without giving you a dissertation on the history of the lamp first?

Seeing as we have past fertility issues, having more children is a planned event in our house.? Sure, we’re not, not trying, but given my body’s weird state of growing foreign stuff it would take a little more than throwing caution to the wind.? I am constantly getting the “well you never know” from people.? Or “I know so and so and they had x condition and they got pregnant.”? I’m personally not convinced that I could ever get pregnant.? I know my body pretty well.? Hell, I live in it every day.? I know what fibroid and endo pain feels like.? It’s still there people.? I was pain free for about 6 months after my surgery.? That was it.

So now, we are stuck between this rock and a hard place.? I want more children.? I’ve always wanted more children.? I don’t want the child to show up on my door step tomorrow, but I want more children.? Part of me wants to give it a try and go for the biological child.? The other part wants to say forget the biological children and just adopt again.? There are a whole list of pros and cons for both sides of the argument.

On the biological side, while being pregnant is something I would like to do, the resulting child is very tiny and frankly… quite boring.? I’ve mentioned before that I like my sleep.? I’ve never been one to really want to breastfeed.? (oooh the flack I’ll get from that one.)? I would know that at the end of 9ish months I would have a child.? I would be interested to see what a child that is part me and part Derek is like.? It would be nice to have an actual immediate biological family member.? (I have none)? I wouldn’t miss a single first and the most compelling reason… much much cheaper.

On the adopting side, I know what to expect.? We would adopt in the toddler range again so I have an instantly mobile and self sufficient person (pros in my book).? There is no guaranteed timeline on how long before the child comes home.? I love adopting. But… it is very very expensive and we don’t have the money for it right now.

I struggle with this choice every day.? Sure you could tell me that it isn’t a decision I have to make right now.? My answer would be that I’ve been struggling with this choice for months and have come no closer to an answer.? There is no guarantee that if we go the biological route it will result in an actual pregnancy.? I’m not sure if I want to go through the month after month of disappointment again.? However, I don’t know if I can ever be prepared for the roller coaster of international adoption again.

The Trusty Husband’s take.? He’s just as confused as I am.? The boy… we ask him if he wants a sister and he says, “yeah.”? Of course he says that when we ask if he wants a dog too.? Maybe we’ll just go for the dog.


*I almost didn’t publish this post because I don’t like talking about our family planning.? There were only 2 people who knew we were trying to get pregnant for the longest time because I don’t think it is anyone’s business, but I can’t stand this anymore.

21 Comment

  1. Nancy says: Reply

    I have no deep thoughts or good answers for you Elle, family planning is soo personal. Your are correct that there are pros and cons to both, I’ve done both and I wouldn’t trade either experience for the world.

    There is something about having a baby for the 10 buck co-pay that is a lot more appealing than the 45 thou that adoption costs. It seems like money shouldn’t play a part when you’re talking about a child, but it does.

    The big pro to adoption is if you want a girl, you get a girl (or boy) with a bio kids, you get what get.

    I’m rambling because well I can’t offer up much except I know you’ll make the right decision for you, and if they flame you about breastfeeding I’ve got you back. I tried once, hated it, tried again hated it (quit both times) and then for the last two I skipped it all together, now they can flame me too!

  2. We struggle with this thought process as well…even though Sabrina has only been home for a couple of months the thought of how our next child might come about has been rearing its head for awhile now. I don’t think I want to deal with all of the crap that goes with fertility but the thought of dealing with the adoption roller coaster again makes me want to poke out my eyes with a dull pencil. So we keep tabling the discussion for later.

    Oh and BTW – you are going straight to hell for not wanting to suckle a child at your breast. Heh. Kidding. I’m with you on that too.

  3. Ani says: Reply

    This is such a personal family matter that I’ll say the only thing I feel I can say: GOOD LUCK!

  4. Jenny2 says: Reply

    I’m glad you published it.

  5. Jenny says: Reply

    Me too. God, I HATED all the comments while trying to get pregnant. Seems that if I: just relaxed, stopped thinking about it, tilted my hips on a pillow, went on vacation, started adoption planning, and/or ate pine nuts that all my fertility troubles would disappear. All this from people who looked at their sex partner of choice and got pregnant, whether they wanted to or not.

    So much love your way, for whatever path you choose will be the right one.

  6. I’m not sure what else to add here – you’ve laid out the pros and cons so neatly. For me, the only reason I would want a bio kid at this point is the curiosity of what our combined genetics would produce. I’m with you on the sleep and breast feeding thing totally.

    Maybe you could try a different adoption program and try for a child in between baby and toddler – say 6 to 12 months or so? Maybe domestic even? Russia is just so darn expensive…but they do have cute kids!

    I hope something prompts a clearer decision for you.

  7. Debbie says: Reply

    It’s been ages since I’ve commented (not really sure why).
    Anyhow my 2 cents. I have a feeling that one day you’re going to wake up and just know that it’s time to go again (which ever route you take).

  8. DebiP says: Reply

    I think that when you are “expecting” again then you will know what way you are going…I know all about that dern fertility and all about that adoption…Domestic, International, fertility…just let it happen. Glad you posted about it too….

  9. Lauri says: Reply

    I think this is an important topic.. as someone with inferitilty issues on both ends ( DH & I) we highly doubt it will just happen for us.. we welcome miracles and a pregnancy would be a great surprise.. but I dont think it is going to happen on its own.. we needed to most invasive ivf w/icsi when I attempted.

    The worst is when people tell me that I will suddenly get pregant because we adopted.

    I don’t see how we could swing another international adoption anytime soon…. we have not recovered from the first one.. and it will take us a while to do so. I do have it in my heart to adopt again…. I would love to go back to Russia…I am just not sure how the process will take shape… domestic? older child? fostering?

    good post… thanks for sharing

  10. Wendy says: Reply

    Only hindsight will answer the questions. You know now that the long adoption journey you endured was the right path because now you have the boy and he is perfect. Whatever you choose, it will be clear to you and only you.

    Oh, and breastfeeding? Over-rated in my book. I pumped for 8 months because Levi couldn’t suckle hard enough, thinking I was protecting him from infections, etc. He still got RSV and was desperately ill. And the only thing that can prepare you for the feeling of breasfeeding with swollen engorged breasts that hurt to look at? Take one out, lay it on the table and smack the hell out of the nipple with a hammer. That will come close….

  11. Dana says: Reply

    It really drives me crazy, too, when people say “once you adopt I’m sure you’ll get pregnant!”. No you aren’t. I truly believe I will never be pregnant. A few years ago that was the worst thing I could envision. After having spent thousands upon thousands to know that I will never be pregnant, I’m happy. I know this is God’s plan for us. And I know there is a child out there that needs us as much as we need him/her. But, like you said, I do long to see that child who is made from the two of us.

  12. serena says: Reply

    I thought about adoption again for about a year after I brought my girl home. I was on a waiting list for China for a while. Being single its REALLY financially out of the question…but others manage, could I? Turns out, I just can’t face the journey again. Financially or emotionally. Thats the biggest reason we uprooted and moved away. Now I’m close to family, but away from everyone else. I’m convinced its the best place to raise my daughter so she will have close family relationships.

    Best wishes with your decision. Its gotta be a tough one.

  13. Mom says: Reply

    Isn’t that apart of blogging…to get peoples input? Does anyone in this community care where their children came from? It can’t hurt to try to have one naturally BUT it’s not the end of the world if it doesn’t happen. Whatever happens…be it a tiny infant (which you would embrace) or another adoption, the ? is are you ready? If so…it can’t hurt to try! You’ve got a beautiful son and there is no shame in not conceiving. Either you’ll be pleasantly surprised or you’ll go to plan B! Whatever you both decide we’re always gonna be there to support you. You’ve been blessed with a son and the disappointment YOU MIGHT be facing is not a burden you can’t bear. You’re stronger then you give yourself credit for!

  14. I nodded my head while reading your post. I get what you’re saying. Don’t have any words of wisdom to offer…I just get it.

  15. Lauren says: Reply

    I was thinking why not try to conceive naturally while you truly make your decision. This may be a bit naive if you will need medical intervention to make that a possibility but I was just thinking it couldn’t hurt (financially) to give it a try. And while you continue to ponder adoption or not you will have already been trying the cheaper route. All of this is from the financial aspect which I know shouldn’t play a role but I had to believe it really does.

    From the emotional side I think only you could figure out if you are ready for either roller coaster.

    I guess what I should say most is GOOD LUCK with either decision you make!

  16. Kim says: Reply

    I been through both (ok… the adoption thing is not quite finalized yet) and they are both grueling. No assvice coming from me… just best wishes and good luck.

  17. Kathy says: Reply

    Hi, This post reminds me of how I felt about 3 years ago. Our son, adopted from Russia was getting ready to turn 2 and I was really thinking about child #2. We had done the infertility route which ended in an ectopic and miscarriages. So although we were not preventing pregnancies I felt pretty confident that it would not just happen for us.

    My husband was supportive and fine with another (though he would have also been fine with just 1). So the paperwork began (after a home equity line of credit!) in 12/04 and we were in Kazakhstan in 5/05 meeting our daughter.

    So here we are a family of 4, the kdis are 2 and 4 now and doing great. We just moved to a bigger house and I’m thinking maybe just one more….


  18. Jenny says: Reply

    I think you need to do what you are comfy with. Why not try bio. why not. If it gets too emotional stop.

    With adoption. If I wasn’t soo tired and didn’t have 2 right away. We may have already started the second one.

    If you do consider it, Viet Nam is a wonderful program but I think it is actually harder to get a bit of an older baby. But the costs are soo prohibitive. And that is just a bummer.

    No matter what I support you.

  19. Tam says: Reply

    I get it, too. I wanted to be a mother and tried to conceive via AI for 9 months until I finally got some lab work done that showed I had waited too long (I was 41 when I started and 42 when I found out my ovarian reserve was shot). I knew I wanted a child, not, necessarily, to be pregnant and moved on to adoption. The adoption process has been just as difficult emotionally as the TTC process was, but I’m thrilled to know that everything was worth it in the end. My son will be home in a few weeks and that’s all I ever wanted.

    All that just to say Good luck with whatever you decide. Wherever your heart leads is the right choice.

  20. kate says: Reply

    just sending empathetic hugs your way. as a single girl, this is not one of my struggles. but, i can so easily see how huge this decision is for you.

    thanks for sharing. you know you’ve got lots of support here…from people who will refrain from asking silly questions about the timing of the arrival of your newest child–no matter which decision you make.

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