Having A Large Age Gap Between Children

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When it came to deciding if we were going to expand our family, it took a lot of deliberating. It’s not that we ever planned on stopping at just one but life kind of took over and before we knew it whole years had passed and it just never felt like it was the right time. Is there ever a right time?

When is the right time?

The trouble is by the time we felt ready, our family of three had the perfect dynamic, and it was questionable if disrupting that would be a positive thing. Having another baby is one of those decisions you make in life that you have to commit to. It isn’t something you can waver on. You don’t get the opportunity to dip your toe and retreat if it doesn’t work out as you planned. It’s also one of those changes that come with no guarantees, and there really is no knowing how things will turn out. It was this element of complete surprise that made me anxious.

Dealing With Death & Bereavement Whilst Pregnant

On the one hand, I wanted to grow our family more than anything, and on the flip, I was scared of the change. I’m the kind of person that doesn’t welcome change. I appreciate that in life, things must change to blossom and grow. It doesn’t mean I have to like it though. I am far more comfortable in a situation I know isn’t the best than to risk the change to make things better. Having a baby would be a change, and I was worried about the age gap.

Almost everyone I knew that had more than one child had done so in short succession. Some had waited mere months while others only short years. Henry was almost six when we decided to try for another baby, and I wondered if the age gap was going to be too big. People often warned me that I was leaving things too late, and I let these worries cloud my mind somewhat. When we got the joyful news that we were pregnant, I was both ecstatic with joy and riddled with anxiety. I worried tirelessly that I had made the wrong decision.

Telling Henry

We hadn’t told Henry that we were going to try for another baby. Pregnancy isn’t a guarantee, and I had no idea if we would even be able to conceive, so it felt unnecessary to burden him with that. Once pregnant We kept the news a secret until we were at 12 weeks and had our scan. In some ways, I am superstitious, but mostly, I was just terrified, and I wanted complete certainty before we broke the news to anyone – especially Henry. We told him when he came home from school on the day of our scan, and as he gripped that scan photograph, I could see the excitement beaming on his face. He was thrilled that he was going to become a big brother.

Twenty-Week Scan

Initially, it felt like a honeymoon period. Of course, the idea of a brother or sister sounds fun at first, but when the reality kicked in that was sure to change. Henry spent the remainder of the pregnancy planning out his future as a brother, and although the two of them had never met the love he had for his unborn brother was evident.

Hugo’s Arrival

Hugo’s birth wasn’t quite the hypnobirthing experience I had envisioned, and I spent the majority of labour in the waiting room of triage. The midwives were convinced he wasn’t coming and disputed whether I was actually even in labour!!! Eventually, I convinced them to take me to a room, and it’s a good job because six minutes later, I was holding a newly birthed Hugo!

In the morning, Ollie left the hospital and went to collect Henry. For an hour, it was just Hugo and me, and as I looked down at this new life, I knew that our lives were about to change forever. When Henry walked in, it was probably the happiest moment of my life. It was the first time all of the people that meant the most to me were in the same room. Henry looked past me almost immediately his eyes searching the room for his new brother, and as I stepped aside revealing the basinet where Hugo was wrapped up in a tight cocoon, I could see the love between both boys and my heart was fit to burst.

From that moment, Henry has become Hugo’s protector he dotes on and adores him every second of every day. He is a considerable help watching over him, entertaining him and generally just loving every bone in his body. The honeymoon period never ended, and the age gap I was so worried about was never a problem. I think that there are positives to every sized gap for every different family and what works for one might not work for another. There is one thing for sure I couldn’t imagine a different age gap between the two of them now!

Enjoying the simple things

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  1. Rachel Bustin
    19th August 2019 / 3:08 pm

    My sister has a 7 year age gap between her two and loves it. While the eldest is at school she has time for the other. I have a 2 years 2 months between mine and it’s bloody hard. I have two of them with me every afternoon as the oldest doesn’t start school until next September. But they love each other dearly and are really close. It’s a tricky one, but everyone has to find the right gap for them.

    • sophiegw
      24th August 2019 / 8:00 pm

      Exactly I don’t think there is a one size fits all for anyone it’s what works for your family at the end of the day.

  2. susankmann
    19th August 2019 / 5:20 pm

    Aww that is lovely. I didn’t know what would be a good age gap as I am an only child, but I think everything happens for a reason and it is dependent on the kids and parents. I have 2 years between my boys but more between them and my youngest, but worked. This looks like it was right for you and your boys xx

    • sophiegw
      24th August 2019 / 8:02 pm

      I’m an only child too so it was similar for me I think you do whatever works for your family at the end of the day xx

  3. Amy
    22nd August 2019 / 6:05 pm

    I will have an almost 10 year age gap between my two. My daughter is due in November and my son will be 10 in March. Both were happy surprises- my oldest when I was just 19 and my youngest when we had just about given up on being able to conceive another baby. They won’t be playmates but I’m sure she will adore her big brother and that he will always help take care of and protect her.

    • sophiegw
      24th August 2019 / 8:02 pm

      I don’t think there is anything quite like the love between siblings no matter what the age gap xx

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