Guest Post: Counting Higher Than Two

Mommy, Esq. is a lawyer at a Big Firm and mom to almost 10 month old twins, Edmund (Ned) and Penelope. In between conference calls and deal closings she thanks her lucky stars for an unbelievable Husband (and co-parent) and nanny. You can find her blog about Big Law and the three loves of her life at www.mommyesq.com.

Goddess in Progress has discussed her struggles around whether or not to go for number three and Laura C has also blogged about knowing she is happy with two rambuncious boys. This may shock some of you moms of multiples out there but my husband and I decided to start trying for a third kid right around month 5 with our newborn twins.

If I saw me through a lens I would think we were crazy. After all, I work too much, Husband travels too much, we haven’t even figured out how to be parents – why add another baby into the mix? You may be toying with the idea yourself so I thought I’d let you in on all the discussions we’ve had since deciding to take the plunge:

1. Parenting is Fun. Husband and I originally decided to have kids because “hey, that’s what you do”. If you love each other and want to pass on your values and genetic code you force the next generation to suffer through your parenting mistakes. We both can’t believe how much we like it. It’s not always pretty but we think someday we’ll love our kids not only because of their genetic code but because we helped raise them into loving, self-sufficient (here’s hoping) adults.

2. Did You See My Gray Hair(s)? We started trying for kids before I turned 30. Two years and 2 rounds of Clomid later, we discovered we were having twins. My mom had her FOURTH kid at 32. I’m not getting any younger so I want to have another kid while I can – ideally before I’m 35. The bigger and as-of-yet unresolved issue is whether we undergo any fertility treatments if we don’t have any success in the next 6 months. Husband says no way. I say, hmmm…. [noncommittal noises].

3. TWO MORE? Since I’m a triplet there is some possibility – and every mom of multiples fear – that we could end up pregnant again with two (or more) even without fertility treatments. We’re okay with that. Seriously. I not-so-secretly think having two babies at once is more of a joy than one even when factoring in the headaches that go into two babies. I also think that the third kid might feel a bit left out so why not have another set of twins?

4. Little Helpers vs. Bring On the Chaos. Lots of moms wait until multiples kids are older to have more kids. I’m more of the mindset that we lump the diapers, the potty training, the assertion of independence right in a row so we “get it over with” (can you tell I’m not a big fan of the “newborn” phase?). My brother was 6 years younger than my sisters and me and while yes, we were able to make him breakfast and eventually drive him around we weren’t close or “played” together in any way until he became a full-fledged adult. As my kids have started to go through the development leap phase (as of yet unsuccessful) and I have spent some time with my 2.5 year old nephew I know it will be hard, very hard to have 3 kids under the age of 2 or 3 (since time is ticking without any results). But won’t it be better once they are all 5 and 7, right? Right? Plus if we delay then we could love the self-sufficiency of having older kids so much we don’t dare create new chaos. To be honest I was sort of hoping I would get pregnant my first month back at work so I could keep everything off balance.

5. Logistics/Money. It’s not going to be cheap and it’s not going to be easy. We’ll continue with our retirement savings goals and try to save for their college costs. Our primary financial goal is that we don’t want to have to rely on our kids to support us in old age – even knowing that social security and Medicaid will likely be bankrupt when we retire. I’d like to tell you we carefully looked at our finances but frankly it’s a crap shoot. We have enough faith in ourselves that we can make it work.

Our family would be complete without any more kids; but we have room in our hearts for more. What about you, readers: When is the best time for another kid after multiples (if ever)? Would you go for more if it involved fertility treatments?

29 thoughts on “Guest Post: Counting Higher Than Two

  1. Thank you for the post Mommy, Esq! And good luck with TTC. While you’re ahead of my timing, I’m right there with you. Also a lawyer, and my husband and I are thinking of having another. Feel mixed about it, but I think we’re go for it.

    The funny part is that my husband wants another more than I do. So he gave me the green light, and if or when I decide I agree, I’m hoping to surprise him.

    If all goes well, I hope to be preggers by next January or Feb!

  2. I’m glad I’m not the only insane one! Ahm, I mean I too am thinking of a third. Not right this moment though. Had the worst morning ever with my 16month old twins and just resigned my post as their mother (via blog). One they wake up from their nap and start being adorable again, I’ll start pining for a 3rd again. That is, if I ever escape this jungle ;)
    .-= Jungletwins´s last blog ..I QUIT!!! =-.

  3. When my twins were born my older child was 15 months and about 2 weeks old. So for about 8 months I had 3 under 2 … and honestly I don’t know how I did it. I’m a stay at home mom and my husband works a lot of hours and needs to travel several times a year. I felt as if I was a single parent more often than not.

    But now my oldest just turned 4 and the twins are 2-1/2 (3 in October) and it is fantastic. I was not a fan of the baby stage either … I love the fact they are talking and doing any number of funny things. The diapers are all but gone, no bottles, no bibs, no highchairs. I get to sleep all night (most nights).

    I highly recommend having them close together. Especially, since you have such a great attitude about it. It will be hard … but you’ve had hard already and you know you can handle it.

    On the financial end, a piece of advise we got about our over zealous college saving plan was that it’s easy to finance a college education but you can’t finance your retirement … needless to say we changed gears.

    Fertility treatments? It was our only option after 10 years of trying. We shouldn’t have waited so long. That is the ONLY thing I would change.

    Good luck…

  4. GO FOR IT!!! :) My twins are 4 and my little guy is almost 2. It’s a lot of hard work, but watching them all interact is *awesome*

    Just yesterday, Logan (the little guy) bumped his head. After his hug from me, he went straight to Burke for another big hug. Burke gave it to him willingly … and for as long as Logan wanted it.
    I.LOVED.EVERY.MINUTE. :)
    .-= Nancy´s last blog ..Thursday Theater: Fireworks =-.

  5. we are actually contemplating this. we have a single embryo on ice. in the exact condition as the two embryos that became our boy and girl twins. we feel like we need to at least “try”. and if it works, YAY! and if not, well then we’d “be done”. But our question now is WHEN TO TRY. We’ve got two 14 month olds, the possibility of losing a job, the liklihood of a move to a new city – all before year end. BUT I’M THIRTY FIVE. So there’s that. $2K in childcare per month is killer so can’t imagine a third right now. So, for now, we wait.
    .-= Rachel´s last blog ..10:50 PM =-.

  6. My boys were 21 months when baby girl was born. Now she is 6 months and it’s chaotic at times, but we’re loving it. I like that they are close in age and right now the boys adore baby sister.
    .-= Joanna´s last blog ..Little musicians =-.

  7. We’ve talked about whether we would want more. Our ultimate decision is no, not because we don’t think we could handle it, but because I will never ever ever go through fertility treatments again. The hormones really messed with me, to put it politely. So, I’m happy with my four… but sometimes I see a newborn and think “well, maybe one more…”
    .-= Quadmama´s last blog ..When (Stuffed) Animals Attack =-.

  8. Good for you for knowing what you want! Sounds like a great plan, and a positive attitude can get you through many many things. And it is such a personal decision !
    .-= LauraC´s last blog ..Thursday gumbo =-.

  9. Good for you for getting back in the pool :) My brother and sister (twins) are only a year and a half younger than me, and I did like being so close in age.

    As you know, I’m pregnant now…due right after my boys turn 4. We’d decided against pursuing any further fertility treatments after the boys. No thanks…we had a LONG journey to have them and I couldn’t take that physical and mental roller coaster again! So we just left it to fate, both of us assuming we’d never get pregnant on our own. Then, wham, just when you least expect it…

    I’m pretty amused that I’m apparently more fertile pushing 35 years old than I was at 27! (Not that I’m at all giving that crappy “just stop trying and it’ll happen” worst advice ever. Yeah, for us, it was “just stop trying and FOUR years later it’ll happen”. Not exactly a speedy option, and hardly what you’d think of with “it’ll just happen” :)
    .-= WhatACard´s last blog ..Planning breakdown =-.

  10. I always wanted 4 kids. Then becoming a mom at a very young age unexpectedly made me rethink that. Once married and we started trying I had no idea the long road we would take to have our twins. They are 20 months now and I would really like another but the fertility thing kind of gets in the way. We have one frozen embryo that we will try but I don’t think we would do a whole IVF cycle again. If I could get pregnant easily I am sure we would have another by now.
    .-= Staci´s last blog ..New pictures =-.

  11. I had four within four years. My twins were 26 months old when their younger sister was born. I’m with you — what’s one more when you’re living with that much chaos? Sure, it’s really hard, but my kids are close and play together and this keeps us from having to store baby clothes and toys in the attic for years and years.
    .-= Jen from Diagnosis: Urine´s last blog ..where i advocate using steroids for parenting enhancement =-.

  12. I would second Jen’s comment — “what’s one more when you’re living with that much chaos?” Our daughter had just turned 3 when our boys were born, so currently we’ve got one at 4-1/2 and two at 18 months. I know for sure we want to have one more, and I am a bit puzzled when people look at me like I’ve suddenly grown a second head when I say that. We’re already outnumbered, so why not add one more to the mix?

    I wonder if this is an easier (stupid word — things are never “easy,” are they?) decision to make when one parent stays at home? Thoughts? I am a SAHM, and it seems like our decision hinges more on the timing of things rather than on # of kids in daycare/cost/what have you.
    .-= Carrie in SD´s last blog ..Lake Day! =-.

  13. WOW, although I completely agree with the whole idea of it’s hard anyway just do it all at once. I am still not sure I would have the capacity for another one quite yet with 7 month old twins. There is just so much to do in a day and my pregnancy was so difficult!

    However, I have to admit that experiencing how much I LOVE my 2 little ones has started a strange longing for another. Craziness…. I never thought I would be saying that:)
    .-= Vicky @ thecitycradle´s last blog ..The 7 months of twin beauty… =-.

  14. I also want one more. I think I would love to have many, hehe, but it is probably not an option. My girls are 8 months now and I am not anywhere near trying for another, there are still too many things to be settled in our lives. I am young (29) and can wait a few more years, though i’d also prefer them to be closer in age. Fertility does not worry me, thankfully. I almost do not know how I got pregnant with the girls.
    .-= Julia´s last blog ..Gritinhos =-.

  15. We have been wrestling with the same question lately only we’d being going from three to four. Four years ago I would have told you the number of kids I wanted was zero but after having our first (surprise birth control baby) and then twins (another surprise.. well one of them anyways) 27 months later my husband and I both feel like someone is missing from our family.

    So the dilemma now is whether to try this year and hope to time it so the twins will be 2.5 and DD 4.5 and in half day preschool when baby #4 is born OR wait until next year and time it so that the boys will be 3.5 and DD will be 5.5 and in FULL day kindergarten.

    I go back and forth all the time, depending on how great/terrible the day has been. I do have to say however that I am terrified of having another set of multiples! That would make me cry. :)
    .-= Cristal´s last blog ..Steel Magnolias and The Fourth of July =-.

  16. Interesting the number of people agreeing with you. We also decided to try again when our twin boys were about 5-6 months old (and, coincidentally, right after I went back to work at a BigLaw firm). I was surprised at myself, because I always thought two would be enough (I’m an only child). And we did it for the same reason — we had kids because that’s what people do, but it turned out that we love parenting. Like the last time, we weren’t successful, so after a couple of years we did IVF again. Our second set of twins (b/g) are three years younger than our first. I was also just fine with more twins. I obviously don’t know any other way, but I can’t imagine having only one kid at a time. It was a lot more work, though, and I ended up resigning from my firm’s partnership and take a more flexible, of counsel position at a smaller firm. I’m very glad about it though. And we are having a great time with all the kids (now ages 2 and 5).

  17. Thanks so much for this post. I’m pregnant with baby #4 right now, so we’ll have 3 1/2 year old & 20 month twins when the new baby is born. We used clomid for the first 3, but baby #4 is a surprise. We were a little apprehensive about the comments we would get when we made the announcement–you know–snip, snip buddy . . . So it is nice to hear that there are others out there who choose to have the kiddos close together like us. Now if I can only survive those first 6 months.

  18. I really appreciate the fact that Mommy, Esq. didn’t focus on the desire for a singleton or assume that she could have another one. I completely respect the feelings many of the MoMs have discussed recently, but I’ve found it odd that they seem to assume they could have another, despite the fact that many of the MoMs have experienced infertility. (Never mind secondary infertility issues, etc.)

    I am pregnant with twins, courtesy of IVF, and could not be happier. This pregnancy will be it for us because of my age and infertility issues. I’ll never know what it’s like to be able to dote fully on one little babe, but I will know the joy of having two children.

    Mommy, Esq. is brave, for sure. I work with her; she handles chaos pretty darn well, let me tell you!

  19. I have been thinking of baby #3 since the twins were about 4 months old. At first, my husband was on board, then he was unsure and now he is on board again. When we thought about how uneducated we were about all things baby (and I mean ALL things), having another one will seem so easy with everything we have learned. And, at least for me, I don’t feel like our family is done.
    Unfortunately, we can’t start fertility treatments until I stop pumping so we will probably start after our Christmas vacation. We have three embryos on ice but we will only transfer one at a time this time!! I’d welcome twins if that’s what God has in store but I won’t be the one responsible for it :)
    .-= Nicole´s last blog ..Mastitis and Canine Hemorrhoids =-.

  20. My twins are #2 & #3, and my oldest is 2.5. So I do have 3 under 3. It’s a little crazy sometimes. Well, honestly, it’s a lot crazy sometimes. I too have fertility issues; it took 7 years for me to get pregnant with my oldest, and I was 35 when he was born. I had a tubal when my twins were born. I have lamented it several times, but it was probably a smart decision. I think it would be too tempting for me to go off birth control and see what happens.
    I had to do IVF to get pregnant, so I could actually do it again if I really wanted to. But, #1: our financial planning was for two kids so we are already tight on money, which leads to #2: we don’t have the $$$ for another round of IVF, #3: I’m already 38. I wouldn’t intentionally have another child until all of these are potty trained, which would put me around 41, and #4: what if I have twins again?
    If I were about 5 years younger, I would totally go for it.
    .-= Melanie´s last blog ..Make Way! Make Way! =-.

  21. I say good for you for knowing what you want and having the guts to go for it.
    We have a 5 y/o girl and two 1 y/o girls running around. After becoming a mom for the first time, I was so very happy but it took me 3 years to get the guts up to have one more (and we were blessed with 2 – go figure). I am so very happy we decided to have more kids. I would even have another if I could, but I can’t, that is how much my heart has grown from adding children to our family. Yes, it is chaotic most times of the day, anyone with kids will tell you that, but as you know from having 2 already, your heart just grows bigger and your laughter and love increase exponentially.

  22. One of the issues for us, I think, is how we would ever juggle a fresh IVF cycle and twins with me as a SAHM. It is such a time consuming, unpredictable roller coaster, it’s hard to imagine doing it with my two two year olds as well.

    I have to agree with Nicole—if we ever went back, I’d leave the multiples up to the whims of fate. I’m not helping fate along at all this time!

  23. Bring on the chaos! Our IVF boy twins were 19 months when our surprise girl twins arrived. We had 4 under 2! They are now 3 and 2. It is super hard work, but we are so glad they will be close in age and have each other. And really, we’re done with bottles; we’re done with night feedings; we’re done with infant gear; we’re done with teething; we’re nearing done with diapers. Forever. And for that, we are thankful.
    .-= Susan´s last blog ..Randomness: We’re Growing Up =-.

  24. I too would love to expand our family – especially with another set of twins! my pregnancy record, sadly, is not good at all and I worry that I wouldn’t be able to adequately care for the family I already have if I was able to get pregnant again. we have embryos on ice as well and definitely wouldn’t shy away from fertility treatments if that was what it took.

  25. I’m the older (and only) sibling of identical twins who are very close, and so we’re stopping with just our twins. Everyone looks horrified when I say so, but I know a few things about feeling left out. Three can be a very lonely number when the other two are always a team.
    .-= Ellen K.´s last blog ..Book recs =-.

  26. I forgot to answer the question about more fertility treatments. It was difficult for us to decide to try IVF, for which we had to pay entirely out of pocket, and we don’t have any frozen embryos. It’s almost guaranteed that we would need IVF for a future pregnancy, and $13K or more is too much to spend again. I’d like to get on with my life, which was almost consumed by infertility for 4 years, and even a surprise pregnancy would be pretty unwelcome right now, so I’m on BCP. If our twins had been easily won, I might feel differently, but the idea of TTC or doing IVF again is almost unbearable.
    .-= Ellen K.´s last blog ..Book recs =-.

  27. My husband and I have been talking a lot about this lately more because we are contemplating the Great Snip than whether or not we want to expand our family. Our ID twins were a complete surprise to us and our hearts and home feel very full with our 10-month-old girls. We are wracked with guilt that we can’t spend more time with our neglected border collie, so it is hard to imagine adding another human to the mix. But we’ve decided that we are going to keep the door open for now, just in case…
    .-= Lisa´s last blog .. =-.

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