No matter what your family plans from the time before you had children — whether you've always known that you only want to have one child, or wanted a large family, or didn't want kids at all but you got pregnant and changed your mind — once a child enters your life you can pretty much figure on reassessing whatever plans you did have. Because though this sounds obvious, I think it bears highlighting: when you have a kid, you know what it's like to actually have one. Your dreams for the future have become your present reality, and that can make a pretty huge difference moving forward. You never know how having children will change you, and that includes your plans of whether or not to have more children.
Maybe before you held your first precious darling in your arms, you dreamed of landing a maudlin reality show with your dozens of children because you've always imagined yourself a pregnant Mother Earth goddess for 20 years straight and enjoy driving buses out of necessity, but then you had one and immediately sent your partner to go get a vasectomy because you instantly knew your family was complete. Or maybe you only wanted one, but then after a while, you were like, "OMG, babies are like tattoos or potato chips: You can't have just one! I think I want another baby!" These little creatures do strange things to us.
For those among us who've decided to take the plunge and go for another, our motivations and precise triggers can vary. Here's what 12 women said when I asked when they knew they were ready.