Is there such a thing as the ‘ideal age gap’ between children? I’ve been really thinking about what the age gap will be between Oakland and Oakland 2.0 should this IVF cycle be successful. If it works first go I will be due in late February/early March, with Oakland being around two and a half. I know quite a lot of mums with two under two, and I literally take my hat off to them. There was even one woman in my mummy group the other day who wrote she had three under three and the sheer logistics of how that even happened blows me away (there were no multiples, so she has been a busy lady). Oakland is a handful for me right now, I can’t imagine having a newborn at this very moment. Even the thought of being pregnant and dealing with morning sickness and tiredness whilst entertaining him makes me woozy. I highly doubt he is going to grow and become entirely independent within the next couple of weeks either.
So what is the dream gap? Does it exist or are you screwed no matter what? I feel like this gap for us is actually not ideal. Preferably I would like to stretch it out further, but I am impatient and I am also considering my eggs which I envision to be shriveling up and turning into piles of dust daily.
Then you can go too far the other way and have one that is capable of wiping their own ass and bathing independently without drowning and then suddenly you throw this little chubby blob in to the mix which is completely reliant on you for survival, when you’ve literally just become accustomed to finally changing your tampon without an audience mimicking your every move and sleeping in blocks of more than four hours at a time. So that clearly is not ideal either.
Would it actually just be best to pop them all out at the same time? Aim for twins, heck aim for triplets even? Orrr should we have the one, let him get to an age where he is in school, but also able to become a mini slave, helping bath his siblings, wash dishes, fold laundry, clean the floors etc? Maybe we could even train him to wake during the night and help with burping and changing? Then he would be gone during the day leaving me time to turn my full attention to my newborn/s. One thing I know for sure is that as soon as we return from Oakland’s birthday cruise in August I am enrolling him in day care for a half or even a full day weekly. I haven’t had time to myself in a long time, and if I am pregnant and it is anything like his pregnancy, I will be needing some time to sleep and vomit without him stuck to my boob.
So while we are on the topic of the perfect age gap, what is the perfect number of children? If we have more than two and we are suddenly outnumbered, what happens then? Does it all go to shit? I was speaking with someone the other day who said three is damn near impossible, but for some reason four is easy? Maybe the trick is to keep it even so they all have a little play mate? For me, I feel like three is my number. I come from four (I actually have many others, but this is who I was raised with directly), and I was the only girl. I loved this because it meant that while my brothers all got the hand me downs, I was the little princess and often got new and pretty clothes. Mum and I got special time together to do things like hair, make up and nails while my brothers worked on cars, played footy and got all dirty. Side note here: I am not complaining about my upbringing, but we are raising our child/ren to ignore gender stereotypes and encourage them to do whatever they want. Oakland puts make up and lip balm on every day and this is fine.
So is there a point where you have too many and simply not enough hours in the day to give each the individual attention they need and deserve? If you have just one, will they be a spoilt little antisocial turd who can’t share or play well with others? Maybe it all depends on the individual child? I have a friend who really wanted another and then suddenly her son who has always been a dream sleeper since birth became the devil and stopped sleeping, started tantruming and now I think she is scarred forever and swears off any more. I met a woman the other day who had four, or maybe it was five boys. She really wanted a girl but finally realised that luck was not on her side with this and she threw in the breeding towel.
If anyone has cracked the code and figured out the magic age gap and number of children required for a smooth household, let me know so I know what to aim for.