Sometimes I think people get frustrated that my answer to 80% of future related questions is "I would like to". Let's first get out of the way that it doesn't matter what people think. Yes, I know that. But I do like to share my life more than just when it's convenient for me ;). For example, here are some recent questions I've been asked which leaves people with this somewhat annoying one liner. We'll just tackle 3 and then I think you'll get the jist.
Are you going to stay home with your children indefinitely?
My answer: I would like to.
Translation: If I could stay home until the last baby was 18, I would in a heartbeat! But life is unpredictable and money is tight. Going into this first baby, I can be a little creative about making some side money. I can do a little babysitting or something, even taking the baby with me to someone else's house if needed (taking the liability off my house!). But the more babies I have of my own, the harder it becomes to incorporate other people's children into that. The plan is for me to stay home. But we know that plans often have to change. I certainly will not be staying home with my children if that means our house is about to go into foreclosure because we can't make ends meet or we have sky high medical bills that need to be paid. I will do what needs to be done for my family. Right now, we feel that's me staying home. I hope that never changes. But it might, and I might not like it, but that's life. So yes, the plan is for me to stay home.... I'd like to.... but we'll take each month and year as it comes.
Are you going to homeschool?
My answer: I'd like to.
Translation: That's our goal and what we feel would be best for our children. But if we have a child who will be better served through the public school system, then we will do what's best for that child. Since, you know, we haven't met our children yet! Or if for some reason I'm not able to stay home at some point (see above), then public school would be our only option (private wouldn't be an option even if I were working). We might have one child who thrives in homeschool and one child who really needs what public school offers. And we'll be ok with that! Lots of things in life aren't my ideal, but life isn't just about me I'm slowly learning ;). So absolutely I'd like to, but that's another decision that we'll be taking year by year, I'm sure.
Are you going to breastfeed?
My answer: I'd like to.
Translation: I have a whole host of barriers to breastfeeding that I haven't discussed much here. The main one is insufficient glandular tissue where I have underdeveloped/undeveloped milk ducts in my breast due to a life time of hormonal imbalances. Enter PCOS! And hypothyroidism. The upside is at least I don't have insulin resistance working against me, which most PCOSers do. But anyway, that means that I have no clue what will happen. 33% of PCOSers have undersupply, 33% have normal supply, and 33% have oversupply. People can have all the markers of IGT and have no issues, and they can have the markers of IGT and produce only milliliters a day. I would love to ecxlusively breastfeed my baby, but I've been making plans since early on in my pregnancy in case that doesn't work including supplements/techniques that can help IGT moms, looking into donor milk, and formula options I'm comfortable with.
If I could predict the future, I could answer questions so much more easily! But I have had to eat my words enough in life to know that I should never answer definitively to questions pertaining to the future because it almost never plays out like I want it to. So my wishy washy answer is not only true, but it feels like I'm protecting myself. I'm protecting myself from you, who (hey, I'm guilty of this too!), might see something change from an answer I gave years ago, and may hold me to that, judging and wondering why I'm not doing what I said I would, and maybe even secretly enjoying that if you didn't like my plans to start with. And I'm protecting myself from myself. I hold myself to high standars, beat myself up when I can't do something that I really wanted to, and if I tell myself that my plans may not come to fruition, I'm much more more likely to be flexible if that happens. It's a self defense mechanism for sure.