Growing up, I was conditioned to believe becoming a wife and having children is naturally what happens as an adult female. TV taught me a woman’s wedding day is the most important of her life, music taught me making money meant success and social media only portrays doting women born to be mothers, only ever posting happy NEXT catalogue-worthy family portraits. None of that is me. You see, I can’t measure the happiest day of my life or what I consider successful by what it is to others, let alone assume having a baby was the best thing for me. If anything, it scared me. The thought of raising a child is a big anxiety trigger.
My biggest fear in life, is not living it. There was so much I still wanted to achieve before even thinking about babies. Maybe starting my own business, enjoying a few more cocktails silently by the beach and selfishly spending my weekends doing exactly what and when I wanted. Another fear I constantly had bouncing around in my thoughts, was the fear of being a social media mum (yes, let’s all laugh together). I couldn’t see the appeal in sharing every minute and every single detail about your child for everyone to see and couldn’t scroll past the pictures of babies clothes and cheesy status’s fast enough. Never feeling that incredible maternal urge to start a family as I approached 30, I started to convince myself I’d never want to and that was pretty OK with me. In 2018, having children isn’t the end goal for a woman, if not an entire hinderance to the end goal completely.
What happens to my body in pregnancy? What’s birth really like? Will I lose my identity if I have a child? What will I spend money on? Can we afford one? Do they really cry all of the time? I have no family who live near by, who will help me? Do babies sleep at night? Would I be having a baby for the right reasons? What about my career and dreams? What if the baby won’t come out fit and healthy? What if it turns out another ectopic pregnancy?
Daily, I would ask myself all of these questions more and more as I approached 30 (the time of which a women’s chances of getting pregnant starts to deteriorate), do I really want a child?! Did I want to have a child out of curiosity, because I was told that’s what adult women do or true love? The thought of having someone take care of me in my old age or being lonely in the future with my 10 cats wasn’t enough to convince me it’s all worth it. Conflicted, I had to make a decision soon. Leading with the fact Mother Nature gifted me with the ability to carry a child…
Putting all of my fears aside after a lengthy few dozen conversations with my husband, it was decided that we would at least try. Not because it’s simply what married people do, not because everyone else was doing it and certainly not out of curiosity as to what a mixture of my husband and I would create (maybe just a little). Our relationship had survived some turbulence over the previous 8 years, each one being overcome by love. We’d witnessed the strongest relationships crumble and families completely torn apart for one reason or another, yet it wasn’t enough to rule out children for us. Neither was my anxiety, doubts nor previous failed pregnancies. That must have been a good place to start for us surely? When every problem, feels like it’s not as important as having a baby?
So I write this post now, with a five and a half month old little boy who confirmed all my doubts were correct. But most importantly and truthfully it’s all worth it. My son is worth it. The scariest thing now, is being without him.