Some might say that waiting until your thirties to have kids is too old.
Some might say it’s better to have kids when you are younger because you will have more energy.
Some of that might be partly true (about the energy factor), but, who are we kidding. Halle Berry had her second child at 46. And she doesn’t look like she’s slowing down. Does she look old? Hell no!
I was 37 when I became pregnant for with our first child. Everything about 37 said old (not to me, but everyone around me). I was considered a high risk pregnancy because I was over 35, extra testing was required and I had to meet with a special doctor once a month. And I started to think…….
Maybe I am old…
When did we decide that 37 was old?
I didn’t feel old. Was I old?
Fuck no! I’m not old and I don’t even know why I would entertain that idea. After all, I still get carded! People!
Do I have more experience with life? Yes.
Do I deal with the ups and downs with life a little better than in my twenties? Yes.
Am I glad that I waited to have kids? Hell yes!
And here’s why.
You Need to Get to Know Yourself
Life in my twenties was easy. I was doing me, and I’ll admit it. I was selfish and I didn’t care. But, isn’t that what you are suppose to do in your twenties? I didn’t know who I was or what I wanted to do, but that was the fun of it. It was life and I was living it, my terms and for myself.
I went to college like all eighteen year olds do and changed my major too many times to count. I enjoyed a few parties or two, followed in the fun by drinking out of beer bongs and then found my way to England and France for college credit. I loved my twenties. But, all good things have to come to end. We all either graduate or get adult jobs and life goes on. We settle into “adult” life, with the cubicle and bi-weekly paycheck and think…..what’s next?
Of course, get married and have kids!
No, that may seem like the normal progression, but it’s not for everyone and certainly it wasn’t right for me. In today’s world, we are living longer; women are breaking the glass ceiling and depending on themselves, not on a man. I would tell young women today to have fun, enjoy your friends and to date you. Make life experiences and learn to love yourself. Build the foundation of your story and the rest will come.
You Don’t Need to Give into Societal Pressure
My early thirties came and went. I spent them soul searching for what I wanted, traveled to new places and got married. But, I was still childless and reaching my mid-thirties. I got the all annoying question (especially after I got married), “when are you going to have kids”. I always wondered why everyone kept asking me this question. I mean……I just got married!
Even though I was trying to create my own path and what I wanted, it seemed that society had a different idea on how my life should flow.
Societal pressure still plays a role in marriage and family to this day. It’s engrained in us that if we aren’t married by the age of 28 we are going to be an old maid. We are evolving as women, breaking the glass ceiling, becoming equal partners in our relationships and marriages.
I would say to the twenty something’s out there, don’t let the societal pressure dictate your life and follow your dreams. If you put your dreams aside and wait until your kids are grown, you will be too grown. If you jump the gun, get tied down and pregnant before you are truly ready, you will always be wondering….what if? Don’t wonder, do. Remember, you only have one life, so live it before you give life.
A Strong Family is Built on the Foundation of a Strong Marriage
I found my husband early on, but waited twelve years to get married. Some might say we were already married, but I will say not even close. Dating or living with someone is not even close to being married. It’s a commitment that makes you stick, bonds your life together. We eventually got married and had a baby, but it wasn’t always the outlook I had anticipated. We had a lot of growing to do as a couple, which I am so glad we did before having kids.
Once you have found that person to build a life with, you need to enjoy the time with your husband and build a life together before bringing a child into the mix. Talk to each other about how you want to raise your kids. Take those last minute surprise trips because once you have kids, everything will be planned out. Choose spontaneity while you can and enjoy that aspect of your marriage because it won’t always be that way. When kids come, it’s a lot of sleepless nights, poopy diapers and 24/7 entertaining. No, not entertaining your friends…..entertaining you’re KIDS! Parenting can be exhausting, so have lots of fun before they come.
Thankful for Waiting
2:00 a.m. feedings in my twenties did not interest me. Sure, babies are cute and its fun to have them when you have a ton of energy, but hey…..I was young and didn’t want to be tied down to bottles, never ending laundry and the forever responsibility (at the time). This is the honest truth and I am sure it will surprise a lot of women out there. But, babies aren’t all women think about from the time they get their period.
Waiting to have kids gave me the life experience and insight that I can pass on to my child. I am so glad I knew then what I know now, thankfully. The biggest accomplishment from my twenties is that I knew who I was and what was healthy for my life. I made a grown decision to wait until I was really grown.
So, my advice to all the young women out there would be to wait until you are fully complete with yourself, your accomplishments and all that you want to do. You will be a better and more present parent for that. I am a mother and I’m thankful to be fully present to raise her, because I have already raised myself.