insMy life has taken an interesting turn and I get all sorts of reactions when I tell people about it. The thing is I am the mother of a 17-month-old super-naughty boy. And I am expecting my second baby in another 6 months.
My husband and I are a regular couple living in Delhi and practice law as a profession at the Supreme Court and National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission. Both our families live in Madhya Pradesh and we have no relatives or any kind of close support in Delhi (meaning there is no hope of sharing responsibility of kids as people do in joint families).
With their mouths hanging open, they gape at me for a second and then they utter a "Wow!" A moment later I hear, "How are you going to manage two?! "
In order to enjoy motherhood I decided to take a break from my career and I am devoting all my time to my son Avyaan (Cheeku/Bubbles/Giggles/Lolly being a few of his pet names) and I haven't hired a full-time maid to assist me. Ideally speaking, we should have waited for four years or so and then planned our second. But we talked about it and decided to conceive within 14 months after my first delivery.
Modern-day couples believe in having only one kid these days, let alone attempting two kids in a short span. This makes us an exception. And we are aware of what we are getting into—the financial cost of bringing up two kids (expenses are astronomical in metro cities), the chaos that's bound to ensue while raising a toddler and an infant (the younger will be clamouring to be breastfed and Avyaan might be yelling from the lavatory and waiting to be cleaned up!), to name a few.
When people hear that I am expecting again so soon, I've grown to expect their reaction. It's quite comical, really—with their mouths hanging open, they gape at me for a second and then they utter a "Wow!" A moment later I hear, "But how are you going to manage two?! "
Having two children in a short span will mean life will be challenging for a few years. But then I can get my life in order...
Recently, I had to break this news to other moms in the locality/society during another kid's birthday party where my toddler and I were invited. When I was offered carbonated drinks, I had to decline politely and let her know that I was avoiding them for the sake of a healthy pregnancy. She was apparently delighted and soon after announced to other mothers present in the party, "Look here, Nikita is expecting again!" (As if it's the latest piece of gossip, which I guess it is). This news generated shock and awe and after politely framed questions about my ability to manage two kids, the discussion went on to other issues surrounding the pregnancy. One woman with whom I am generally acquainted approached me an hour later with a tight smile and said, "Sorry I forgot to congratulate you at that time." I laughed jovially at her apologetic expression and thanked her. But later, as I thought back to that moment, I realised that the kind of news I have makes people forget their social graces!
Our second baby is very much a planned decision that my husband and I have made, and I am confident about being able to manage the coming onslaught of double responsibility. Still, I know I'm going to add more weight on my already "overweight" body for nine months (not to forget the toddler who loves being carried around in momma's arms). Add to that nausea, dizziness, back aches, prenatal visits to the OB/GYN and somehow hoping to find time to attend the occasional belly dancing classes (latest pregnancy fad you see).
Having two kids only two years apart will mean that they'll play together... all you have to do is supervise.
This situation does look scary and will make many readers wonder why exactly we undertook this mammoth task. Here's your answer:
- Having two children in a short span will mean life will be challenging for a few years. But then I can get my life in order... resuming my career, socialising, partying and travelling. Having two kids many years apart would mean facing the crying, pooping, feeding cycle of an infant again after having been out of practice for few years.
- By God's grace and my doctor's skill, I was able to have a natural delivery the first time (after 14 hours of labour pain!). Such a short gap in two deliveries would have been a bad idea, had I had a c-section.
- We want our kids growing up together and being best friends (sounds very idealistic, but we can always hope).
- Entertaining a single child in the house all day can be very demanding. You practically have to devolve your IQ to their level and then engage them. Having two kids only two years apart will mean that they'll play together... all you have to do is supervise (also break them apart when they are involved in violent scuffles over toys, candy or which cartoon channel to watch).
- Frankly, as a woman I want to get over this child-bearing and delivering cycle. Quickly giving birth to the two kids I've always wanted gives me an opportunity to get my life back sooner.
So, there you go, we've taken our leap of faith after weighing all the pros and cons. Having a positive outlook helps and we know that hiring full-time help at home is also always an option. Moreover, we have been drawing inspiration from couples who have had twins or triplets! They somehow succeed, don't they? So will we.