When our family became complete – Happy Birthday Jonah
After the birth of our daughter 11 years ago, our family was pretty perfect. We had a baby boy followed closely after by a baby girl. We had a house and we both had good jobs. We were very happy. So why did I feel that I wasn’t done yet? Why did I feel that something was missing? What was wrong with me? I wanted a third child. Was I being selfish? I wanted to get pregnant very soon after partly because Anna Grace’s birth was a breeze compared to Sam’s birth (obviously it was NOT a breeze but was much easier and more straightforward than my first labor and delivery) and partly because I thought it would be easier having a small gap between them all. However, work got busy – really busy and life got busy – really busy. So we settled into the routine of having two children under the age of three (both were in nappies at the same time for a while), pushing an enormous double buggy, not sleeping and working very very hard to earn the money we needed for our house and family. But the urge to have another child persisted. Around the same time that I wanted to announce to my poor suffering husband that I wasn’t going to wait any longer, that I wanted to get pregnant again, we uprooted our family and moved down to the Sussex coast. Nick had been head hunted and offered a job we couldn’t turn down and even though the house prices at that time were outrageously high in the South (I cried for two weeks knowing we were leaving our first home we had lovingly renovated together and moving to an over priced house with a tiny garden), we managed the move and settled into a new place with new people. Luckily, we were much closer to my sister-in-law and her family which was fantastic.
It did take a while to settle in and get used to things and it took a long time for our son to start liking his new school and start making friends. He really missed his old house, school and friends and it was real struggle for him for a while. So we put the idea of having a third child on hold and over the next few years I convinced myself that we were fine and we didn’t need to have any more children. We were done.
But we weren’t done. As Nick and I approached our forties, I realized the chance to have a third child was slipping away quickly and that we genuinely would not want to have a new baby the older we got and the older our children got so I broached the topic again and 9 months later our third and last child, Jonah Malcolm Douglas Fenn was born in the birthing pool at Worthing hospital.
Today is Jonah’s 5th birthday and I cannot express how glad I am that we had him, that I persisted and listened to myself, to what I knew I really wanted. Five years ago on March 22nd when he came into this world as the early sun was rising, he completed our family and none of us can imagine our family without him. He is really cute, very funny, smart, very cheeky, uber confident, loving and lovable. I wanted to write so much more about this day and the significance for us, for Jonah and for our family for five is one of the big milestones and with all my children being born in Britain, there are other things I wanted to mention. However, I’ll save all that for another time. The following is what I wrote for Charlie Plunkett’s book 100 Little Words on Parenthood on page 103 and I want to share it with you here as it’s a fitting sentiment for today.
A first child is a triumph
A second child is a blessing
A third child is a treasure
My first child is my pride and joy, my second is my angel and my third is and always will be my baby, my last, a little piece of immortality and sweetness, the one we all watch over and cherish. Through the hard and fast times of parenthood, amid the laughter and kisses, the tears and the hurt, we sometimes have moments of purity and clarity delivered inevitably by the most innocent and vulnerable, and with this, we know true love.
Meghan Fenn is the author of Bringing Up Brits and co-author of Inspiring Global Entrepreneurs with Heidi Mulligan Walker. Meghan is also the Director and Chief Designer at her own design company, White Ochre Design Ltd. And, she is an award winning expat blogger.