What Having an Only Child Feels Like
It’s wanting to have every experience not just for them but for you, because you are only doing this once.
It’s feeling guilty for not giving them a sibling, regardless of the circumstances around that decision.
It’s constantly fielding the “are you having any more” question. And not knowing how to answer because some days you aren’t totally sure that you are done.
It’s feeling the need to make excuses for only having one, as if there is something wrong with it, even though there isn’t.
It’s the eye roll I give, every time I comment on how fast this parenting thing is going and people reply it’s time for another.
It’s wondering if people think I’m selfish or don’t like kids.
It’s knowing that there will be no second time around, no other opportunity to savor that newborn smell or rock a baby to sleep.
It’s the way the air gets sucked out of my lungs when my child says he wants a sister or asks “Mommy when will you have another baby”.
It’s knowing that you only had one baby and that he really isn’t a baby anymore.
It’s giving extra kisses and hugs and holding his hand just a bit longer.
It’s not pushing away the things that keep him little. Helping him with his clothes or letting him take baths instead of showers.
It’s feeling a bit heart broken some days because it’s all going so fast.
It’s those baby years being a blurry memory that you hope you preserved somewhere in the reaches of your mind.
It’s a constant questioning of should we have tried for another sooner or should we again. It’s questioning choices and fate and things that you really had no control over.
It’s an empty fourth bedroom.
It’s always asking friends when their kids started doing something or stopped doing something because I haven’t done it before and won’t be doing it again.
It strangers in the super market asking if he’s my only. And the face they make when I say, “yes”.
It’s when parents of more than one child tell you how much harder it is with two and you can’t help but think my hard is hard too.
It’s this wonderful feeling that you will never be as close to anyone as you are to your child, that you’ve never known someone so well and watch them grow so much.
It’s a feeling that this is your only chance, that you can’t screw it up. Even though you know that’s silly to think.
It’s someone saying, “you can’t be a mom blogger” because you only have one.
It’s making friends into family, so much that your son tells a store clerk that his neighbors are his siblings.
It’s the memories I have with my brother; the birthday parties and Christmas mornings and the shared memories that I know my son will never have.
It’s being the best person in the world to one person.
It’s the joy in his eyes when he sees you.
It’s a small family of three that is perfect.
It’s the way he’s completed our family even if others think there should be more.
It’s this incredible bond that comes from having only had him. That he is the only one I’ve ever been pregnant with, the only one who’s diapers I’ve changed and who has fallen asleep in my arms.