Can we stretch to three?
It’s an honest, hard and grounding question - can we stretch to three? It isn’t just the money that has to stretch (although that does stretch and is a bit of a painful stretch!!) it’s the other bits too; the time, the lack of sleep, the attention, the house space. And so, for a good 3 or 4 hours, over a bottle of cheap wine and a big plate of fried chicken (how all of our decisions are made) Alice and I went through the pros and cons, the could’s and the could-not’s.
A huge part of our decision were the difficulties we had faced when Ezra was born; his heart condition had terrified us both and I distinctly remember a point in the hospital when Alice said that we wouldn’t have any more because she just couldn’t go through anything like that again and I completely agreed with her! How could we enter into another pregnancy knowing the pain and potential for things to go wrong? We spoke to a few different specialists before making any decisions, making sure that Ezra’s condition wasn’t something hereditary, trying to make sure we wouldn’t be going through the same thing again. We had comforting answers and encouraging smiles and decided that we were probably going to be ok.
Another massive decision for us was the fact that Alice does not have easy pregnancies. The first three months vary from a constant painful, foggy head and extreme exhaustion to full blown and constant sick. With Etta, Alice had even found it difficult to keep water down for the first three or four months. We essentially loose a part of Alice for the first three months of her pregnancy and that’s something that can be hard on the entire family. But the love that Etta and Ezra share make every one of those painful days worth it and that’s why Alice decided she could go through that again, probably just one last time.
Then there is the money. Alice hates me talking about finances online (for a family who constantly overshares this is one area she would rather we keep quiet about) but I think it’s important to be as open and honest as possible. We live in a two bed flat which we rent. Our kids have the bigger room and it is massive - far bigger than two rooms would have been for them, but will it fit all three? We’ve made expensive life choices for Etta because we felt that was what was best for her at the time, but do we have the option to make those choices Ezra? Let alone a third? I’ve always been a big believer in the goldfish theory and so far, we’ve done ok by it - if you expand your life, you have absolutely no choice but to grow into your new found space. In the context of children and money, the more we have, the more we have to look after and we will always, no matter what, find a way to do that.
So with all of that in mind, we decided to give it a shot!! What I’m saying - in a bit of a convoluted way - is that our third child was not an easy decision for us. But Alice and I have no doubt that it was the right and best decision for our family.