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Up until recently, all this talk about a potential baby #3 was just fun and games. I was finally—just barely—starting to get used to the idea of the impending craziness that would surely be life with three children, but there was still one final step standing between me and another baby: getting my IUD taken out.
With my other two kids, the decision to get pregnant didn't feel quite so conscious as it did this time around. With my daughter I was taking oral birth control, so when we decided we were "ready", I just stopped taking my pills. I didn't take any ovulation tests or track anything. We sort of just had sex whenever until six months later I found myself knocked up. With my son I wasn't on birth control, so while we weren't "trying" to get pregnant, we also weren't "not trying". He was the result of one carefree night. But this time, I had to physically go to my OB and have my IUD removed. Even just making the appointment felt so intentional... so planned. It was a bit of a strange feeling.
Once my appointment was on the calendar, I waited, and I waffled. I felt like I was changing my mind every day. "Yes, I want another baby." one day, would be replaced with, "No way! I can barely even handle two kids!" the next. But time marched forward and before I knew it the day had arrived. Things were about to get real.
Like, really real.
As my husband headed off for work that morning I jokingly said, "So you're sure you really want another baby right?" to which he jokingly replied, "Eh. Why not?" We laughed, but inside I really did feel nervous.
The night before my appointment my daughter and I watched the movie "Tangled" for the first time. If you've seen it then perhaps you will recall this scene where upon leaving her tower for the first time she agonizes over the inner struggle she is having. She is elated at her newfound freedom, but also guilt-ridden about how it will make her mother feel. It's a pretty funny scene that ironically summed up exactly how I was feeling throughout my appointment—super excited, terrified and overwhelmed all at once.
Here's a little taste of my inner dialogue as I got ready in the doctor's office:
I can't believe I'm doing this! (excited)
I can't believe I'm doing this. (terrified)
I can do this. I mean... how much harder could an extra kid be?
Why did I think I could do this?!
We're going to be one of those big, fun families!
We're going to be "that" family. The one with ALL. THE. KIDS.
I'm so excited that my baby will get to be a big brother!
Wait... that means he won't be my baby anymore! I think I'm going to cry.
He's going to hate me for this. He's going to talk about me in therapy one day and how I ruined him by making him a middle child.
My kids are going to have built-in friends for life!
Except, what if they all hate each other?
What are we going to drive? I can't fit three carseats in my car. Can we afford a different car?
And then the deed was done. The IUD was out and I felt a sense of calm come over me, because I know that whatever happens, it's going to be OK. If another baby is part of the plan for us, it will happen and I know that despite the challenges we will surely face, it will be wonderful and that future baby will be so loved.