Remember the first time you were considering getting pregnant and how excited you were?
That was fun.
Life is different now. Now you know how hard it can be to get pregnant, navigate a pregnancy and have a new baby. You may want more children. You may envision a bigger family at the dinner table. But you know, the road to get there- it’s not all sunshine and rainbows.
So let’s go over some of the factors to consider when you are deciding, “Am I ready for another baby?”
Most experts, including the World Health Organization, American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American College of Obstetricians & Gynecologists, agree that women should wait at least 18-24 months after giving birth to get pregnant again. Pregnancies that occur before 18 months, and especially within the first year, are higher risk for preterm delivery and poor fetal growth, amongst other issues. Waiting the full 18-24 months becomes even more important for those who’ve had a cesarean birth. If you are considering trying to get pregnant before that 18 month mark, perhaps you are older or it’s taken you a long time to get pregnant before, talk to your Ob provider first.
Motherhood, pregnancy, and trying to conceive can all be draining. They can also be very fulfilling. Unfortunately, the fulfillment from motherhood can be unpredictable. Some days are wonderful, and make you feel like you are on top of the world, and others bedtime can’t come soon enough. If you are going to ask more of yourself by embarking on another reproductive journey, you are going to need a self-care routine that fills your reservoir. The feeling of overwhelm is a direct result of a negative balance between what is giving you life, and what is taking it away. Maybe you aren’t there yet, and that’s okay. You can find ways to bring more energy and peace into your life! If you need a little hand-holding when it comes to designing a life that provides consistent fulfillment, my Free Preparing for Pregnancy Masterclass is for you.
If you are having children with another person, you want to be the same page about growing your family. The reproductive journey, and a new baby, requires all-hands-on-deck. If you aren’t in agreement with growing your family, set aside a specific time for just the two of you to talk it over. Enter the conversation with the intention to understand where the other person is coming from, not to argue your case. Validate what the other person is saying by repeating what you heard them express to make sure you understood correctly. Validating your partner doesn’t mean you agree with what they are saying, it just helps ensure you are communicating clearly and understanding each other. When specific concerns come up, ask what could be done to alleviate their concern. If you are unable to come to an agreement, or at least a compromise, after attempting these conversations, it may be time to seek the assistance of a professional therapist.
Life is unpredictable. Listen to yourself. Do you feel strong? Are you ready for the twists and turns of another pregnancy and another child? Ideally, when embarking on another reproductive journey, the answer is “Hell Yes!” If it isn’t, it doesn’t mean that feeling is forever. It might mean you need a little more time, and perhaps a little more guidance. If you want it to be a “Hell Yes!” but you don’t know how to get there my Free Preparing for Pregnancy Masterclass is a wonderful resource, designed specifically for you. For some of you, even when you’ve healed and you feel strong, it’s still not a resounding yes, and that’s okay too. You cannot go wrong listening to your heart.