I've gotten to the point where people are out of horror stories for me. Most people don't have fourth baby experiences with which to out-mom friends and strangers working on their own number 4. What I hear now is stuff like this:
--my two were enough work
--if your labors were as hard as mine (!) you'd have quit too
--we just couldn't afford any more (this especially amuses me coming from people who have a pretty good idea what our income is)
--our house was/is too small for more kids
--I had such hard pregnancies (remember, this is usually from someone with 2 kids)
Well, here's what I have to say to all that: this is my fourth baby in five years, and it has definitely been my easiest pregnancy. Least morning sickness, fewest aches and pains (not that I'm moving too fast these days), least exhaustion-driven despair. Why? No idea on the morning sickness; maybe I've already been stretched to capacity so much that the anatomy is getting used to it; my oldest kid is finally getting big enough to be helpful and the three of them keep each other busy if I need a break. This is all just to illustrate something we already know, that people can make any excuse not to have more kids. [Insert here, for liability reasons, standard disclaimer about some people having serious reasons to quit or space] But it really is true that you don't know how your next pregnancy will go, or how many babies you can afford, or anything else. When we got pregnant with our third we were living in a tiny two bedroom apartment in which it was illegal for more than two children and two adults to live. We were in a very expensive housing market where as far as we could see we didn't have any other options. God in his mercy had us in a four bedroom house two months before she was born.
Anyway. We'll see how the fourth foray into L&D, dairy operations, and postpartum *ahem* instability goes. But I just thought it was interesting how the pregnancy-related conversations change as you start being the veteran, age notwithstanding.