Since the beginning of our relationship, my husband and I never really discussed how many children we wanted. We always said we would be practical and reevaluate after each pregnancy and birth. After we’d successfully gotten pregnant for our son, Declan, and nearly lost him, we spent a lot of time discussing whether or not we should be done growing our family. After carefully entertaining every possible scenario, we decided that at our young age, we were retiring ourselves from our reproductive duties – you know, the whole go forth and be fruitful bit. We were pretty confident in this decision. We have three beautiful children who keep us very busy and happily so.
I knew that my body was getting tired as each pregnancy was harder than the one before, and I was certain that my body would not handle a fourth pregnancy very well. I knew that mentally I was capped with three children as a stay at home mom. I knew that it wasn’t fair to our children we have now to share even more more of their time with us. I knew that we wanted better for our children and that it would be costly to provide for them in that sense. I knew that in adding to our family, our attention and sanity would be spread even thinner.
What I didn’t know is how I would feel once the vasectomy was completed.
Driving my husband to the appointment, we had another conversation making sure we were both on the same page, assuring that this is what we wanted for our family. There was no waiver in either of our minds. While it felt strange to watch my husband taken back for a surgery at 27 years old when the average American has it done at 38, I felt at peace, as I knew our family was complete. Sitting in the waiting room waiting for my husband to come out, another patient said to me, “do you think you have enough kids?” and I jokingly replied, “we do and that is why we’re here!” I felt so good about our choice to close this chapter and go into the next one, I was able to make a joke about it. However, when we got home and I got my husband settled in for some bed rest, it hit me. Declan was our last baby. The childbearing chapter of my life was over! It was the end of an era. I immediately began to feel dread and regret at the thought of the permanency of this vasectomy.
Since the vasectomy, I’ve shed several tears in realizing I will never again experience things like the baby kicks from within or the joy that comes from watching my unborn child on an ultrasound screen. I will never again have the opportunity to soak in the newborn baby smell or swaddle up someone so tiny.
My heart was heavy, saddened by the fact that this part of motherhood for me is done.
I believe what I felt after the procedure was normal. In reality, I didn’t actually want more children, but I felt sad that such an amazing part of my motherhood journey was over. Post vasectomy, I know it will be a new and exciting chapter in my family’s lives and in my marriage. It allows us to have sex and fully focus on each other (TMI? maybe but true). It is a “get it and forget it” type birth control. And husband if you’re reading this, I’ll add here thank you for taking over the role of birth control just as I have done for years.
We’ve created three beautiful souls and now it’s time we slow down and enjoy them.
It’s taken me a while to come back to terms with the era being over but I am now excited again to see what the future looks like in this new chapter!