Anyway, the other day I read this blog about what it's like to give birth to, what you know is going to be, your last child. How you cherish all of their firsts because essentially, with that last child, those firsts are your lasts. I'll admit by the end I was VERY teared up. I won't admit to full blown crying but there were tears.
It was at that point that I was hit with a realization. What about those of us that think that we are going to have more, so while we are appreciating our child's firsts we miss out on our lasts because we don't know they are our lasts.
Let me be very clear about something. I absolutely do not want any more kids. It's not that I don't like kids, or that I can't love whatever kids come permanently into my life. I am just completely unwilling to start over. PJ is 10, I am past the point of diapers, temper tantrums in the grocery store (I think), potty training, the terrible two's and the even more terrible threes. I'm almost to the point where I can leave him home alone. Pretty soon he's going to be driving and dating and I'm going to be traveling and going out. I'll get to do the things that I didn't do in my 20's but I'll be in my 30's which means I'll do those things WAY better than I would have back then. I do not want any more kids. But I did.
I wanted more kids desperately. Since PJ was born, ten and a half years ago, I have spent a large part of time wanting and hoping and trying to have more kids. I never thought that PJ would be my last and my only. As awful as it sounds, if I had know that he was going to be I probably would have spent more time and paid more attention to all of the things that I was never going to get to do again.
I would have loved every minute of being pregnant and paid more attention so I could remember it later. I would have cherished the bond of breast feeding even after he bit me, rather than quitting. I would have paid more attention during the nine months that I got to stay home with him and maybe figure out a way to stay home a little longer. I certainly wouldn't have spent time stressing about getting pregnant again. Hind sight is 20/20 and I didn't know that I wasn't going to have any more kids of my own.
I guess maybe the point is that you should never take anything for granted. It's not defeatist to think that every time could be the last time so you should make the most of it. You never know if you are going to have any more kids so cherish all of their (and your own) firsts and lasts. Never assume that you are going to get a good morning hug or a good night kiss. Not just from your kids but from anyone. Never leave without saying I love you and always make sure that the people around you know how much they mean to you.
After all you don't want to look back in ten years and wish that you had paid more attention because you didn't know that the firsts were also going to be the lasts.