Spin Cycle: The Pros And Cons

July 3, 2009 12:01 am

I married Jamie when I was twenty-eight. The second our “I do’s” were exchanged, I did the whole Marissa Tomei “my biological clock is ticking” thing.  I was determined to pop out at least one kid before I hit thirty. Jamie wanted kids too so he happily obliged. We managed to squeak in under the wire and even had two months to spare. Elliot was born a short sixteen months after Graham and our family was complete.

Growing up, I always thought that I wanted three kids. That was before I had two kids of my own. Graham and Elliot are amazing and smart and every other mushy adjective you can think of but they’re also kicking our parental asses on a daily basis. One more kid might send us both to the loony bin. As peaceful as a trip to the loony bin sounds, it’s so not going to happen.

I may convincingly put on a tough guy act but when it comes to my kids, it’s a different story. These kids are able to bring out emotions in me that I didn’t think possible. Last month Graham’s teacher invited us to sit in on their final circle time of the year. I had tears welling up in my eyes while I proudly watched Graham dance and sing along to every single song. It was the cutest thing ever. Watching Elliot’s unbridled joy over something as simple as a picture of Elmo makes my heart swell too.

It’s true that I am a drill sergeant about scheduling and discipline, but we also have fun. We play and sing and dance and do all sorts of fun things together and I love it. Most days. There are  also those days where I want to beat my head against a wall or sell my kids on Ebay. Luckily, the good days outweigh the bad by far so I won’t sell my kids just yet. I’m always amazed by those moms who seem to keep it all together and pretend that everything is always shiny and magical.  That’s just not possible and I don’t pretend that it is.

I’m glad that we waited to have kids until I was a little older. My twenty year old self wouldn’t have been able to do it. People always stop me and ask what it’s like to have kids so close together. I’m not going to lie, sometimes it’s terrible. The kids are both so young and they fight over everything. I sometimes regret not waiting a little longer before getting pregnant for the second time. But then I look at sweet little Elliot and think that if we had waited, she wouldn’t be here right now. She’s perfect and so is Graham so it all worked out in the end.


Today’s post is brought to you buy Sprite’s Keeper. This week’s Spin Cycle Topic was “kids”.



  1. Pseudo

    “Growing up, I always thought that I wanted three kids. That was before I had two kids of my own.”

    Can I just say ditto.

    You’re in for a fun ride.

  2. blissfully caffeinated

    I’ve looked into selling my kids on ebay and it seems they strongly discourage it.

    When Avery was little we thought for sure we were done, too. But then she got a little bigger and my clock kicked back into high gear and here I am, belly sticking out in front of me. *sigh*

    blissfully caffeinateds last blog post..A pregnancy update that sounds more like complaining than updating.

  3. Stacy (the Random Cool Chick)

    I don’t think my 20 year old self could have been quite as appreciative having a miracle child like my older self does… 😉 Wish I could give her a sibling but it’s not in the cards…

    Graham and Elliot are a blessing as much as you are a blessing to them – you ROCK! 🙂

    Stacy (the Random Cool Chick)s last blog post..Vacation Updates in Friday Fragments Formation

  4. Sprite's Keeper

    I did the same thing with John. I felt like I had to beat the clock before I hit thirty. She was born less than two months after I turned the big 3-0, but it was worth it. Now I’m pushing John to give me another one before I hit 35. I don’t know why these numbers matter to me, but they do. You’re linked! (And we are so alike, it’s freaky.)

    Sprite’s Keepers last blog post..Spin Cycle: Playing Devil’s Advo-kid

  5. MamaBug

    Nothing makes two kids seem easy like adding number 3. Ah, those were the days….now, they out-number us and sooon they’ll know it and rise up against us.

    Enjoy your blessings and the fact that you can easily transport 2 and all their crap in a 4-door sedan. 😉
    Best of luck to you and yours.

  6. cyndi

    Thank you – you’re often going thru similar things and it helps to hear it from someone else who’s a mushy lump with a tough mouth 😉 GL with the parenting…I think it does get easier as they are able to reason a bit more, but we’re going thru a stretch. Kids, gotta love ’em ….or you’d sell ’em, right?!? Happy weekend!

    cyndis last blog post..SOnshine, on my shoulder looks so lovely

  7. Petra aka The Wise (Young) Mommy

    We have so much in common! (Except for the kids close together). It’s great that you had kids at the right time for you and you are enjoying them every day. But I know for sure how hard it is sometimes and sometimes you wonder why you did it at all! (at least I do!)

    Petra aka The Wise (Young) Mommys last blog post..Harsh Reality (Warning: Brutally Honest and Raw)

  8. Stimey

    For a long time having three kids in three and a half years seemed like a really stupid thing to have done. But now that they’re a little older, I’m really glad. They all play together and like the same things. I think the first couple years are really tough, and then it gets really, really good. I hope it stays good.

    Stimeys last blog post..Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy!

  9. Keely

    My 20-yr-old self was a selfish doofus. Also, kind of a hosebag. She would have been a terrible parent. There’s a reason I waited til I was 34.

    Also, that whole “finding the right guy thing”. Details.

    Keelys last blog post..Happy Canada Day from President’s Choice! (Or: Celebrating the birth of our nation with some dead cow. Vegetarians, fair warning)

  10. Michele

    I wanted three also, JR only wanted two tops. We had negotiated a deal. We were having three. Sue me, I’m a better negotiator. Anyway, number two gets here and life gets ugly. Having three got downgraded to two real quick. Very glad I was really willing to be flexible.

    Micheles last blog post..Friday Foodie – ziti with fresh tomato-olive sauce

  11. bex

    Have another kid and tell me what its like bc i’m considering it too. you can be the guinea pig!

    bexs last blog post..FFF: Bowl Haircut

  12. Lin

    Don’t go for three–you’ll be outnumbered. See, now you can say “Boys go here, Girls go there” and Mom and Dad can each grab one and go. Not so easy when there are three kids to contend with.

    Also, kids are EASY at this stage. Wait until they join sports, or scouts, or dance, or something and you have to split up to have a parent there to cheer them on or drive them. Suddenly, someone gets the shaft if you have three. It doesn’t work and you feel guilty. I know LOTS of parents who say this. We’ve stuck with one of each and it is a tad bit easier.

    I’m with you–I LOVED staying home and am struggling with my kids outgrowing me. No, it was not all fun (hey, I went NUTS on the family yesterday), but gees, it is the most incredible and fulfilling thing I ever did.

    Happy 4th, Casey!

    Lins last blog post..The First Official Dork Off!

  13. Julie@Momspective

    I married Ry at 27, wanted 1 before 30 but did NOT want to get myself knocked up just 6 weeks after the wedding. Ah, well. C’est la vie!

    Julie@Momspectives last blog post..Fitness Friday: Me Vs The Dog

  14. K

    Parenting definitely isn’t for wimps.

    I am planning to stop at two as well. It’s honestly all I can handle (and I hope I can actually in fact handle too).

    Excellent post.

    Ks last blog post..Happy Fourth!

  15. Becky

    Sweet post! And yeah, I always used to think I wanted three kids too, but now I’m thinking not. Two seems good. But when I think about Laura not having a sister or Hank not having a brother, I think I need two more, one of each sex. So I better quit thinking about that.

    Beckys last blog post..Getting There Is Less Than Half The Fun

  16. Pseudo

    Left you an award at my blog….

    Pseudos last blog post..Wouldn’t You Like to be a Panda Too, be a Panda…

  17. Kyooty

    oh go for 3, then you can be insane like me? 🙂

    Kyootys last blog post..Happy Independence Day!

  18. Lisa (Jonnysmommy)

    I wanted to see if I commented on this. . . ummm…I read it so where is my comment? Oh right: “Mama! Mama! Paaaaay wit me!”

    Seriously. I love being a mama!

    Lisa (Jonnysmommy)s last blog post..Independence Day

  19. jenni

    nelson and i were just having this conversation last night – that I got pregnant the second time sooner than we intended, but that pregnancy resulted in Miles, who is the absolute perfect baby for our family. yes, some days it’s a flaming, shit-filled nightmare having kids so close together. but MORE days are pretty fracking awesome.

    jennis last blog post..Deja Vu #3

  20. Kendra

    We are waiting to have another kid until little man is a little older (and until we have a bit more money, even though I know you never have enough) and when i see pregnant women I just swoon because I want one now!

  21. Cape Cod Gal

    I swear, you and Daddyfiles are the ones who make me want to have kids the most. Some days it just kills me to read your column. Then I remember that I get to sleep in until 10 on the weekends…..

    Cape Cod Gals last blog post..Stupid Is As Stupid Does

  22. Shangrila

    LOL-I didn’t want children, then had my first and fell head-over-heels in love. My father once said, “One kid is great, two is fine, but the second the kids out-number the parents, you’re completely screwed!” That said, once you have three, another two or three don’t phase you. My sisters routinely leave their kids with me because, hey, what’s one more?! So glad that you have your sweet babies! 🙂

    Shangrilas last blog post..The Rambunctious Penii

  23. Amber

    When you have more than two kids the parents become outnumbered. That’s never good. Trust me, I know.

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