Tuesday, April 24, 2012

How do you know you are ready for a baby?

I debated whether or not to write this post, but  I guess that is the beauty of having your own blog.  You can write whatever you want.  Within reason.  Several friends have asked me this question lately, and my answer is different than you might expect, so I thought it was worth sharing.  If you are wondering, I hope it helps you come to a decision, or at least puts another perspective on the age-old question.

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Growing up I never imagined my wedding or having children.  I had a serious high school boyfriend, but never thought that we would get married.  I had big plans to go to college and be a female executive and wear a red power suit.  Hey, it was the 90's, forgive my fantasy fashion choices.  I always pictured myself in the work place, but not in the home.

Fast forward and after 4 years of dating, The Husband and I got married at the age of 24.  I didn't want kids then, but I was hoping that desire would change.  Fast forward 4 years, 2 cities and 2 different jobs and I still didn't really want kids.  I didn't grow up with a large family that always had kids around and although I babysat plenty, I just wasn't that into kids.

The Husband was ready, and I wasn't.  I honestly started to worry that we might be on totally different pages on the subject.  We were financially stable, had good jobs and a great marriage, but I didn't think I had time for kids.  When I pictured us old together, I thought about how it would be lonely if we never had children, but I just didn't know how I would fit them into my routine.  I finally came to the realization that I would never feel like the time was right.  I was never going to say to myself, "you know what I have time for, a baby!"  So it basically came down to this: I want kids eventually, and I am getting older, so its now or never.

This is the part that I debated writing about.  With so many friends having infertility issues, I don't want you to think that I took getting pregnant lightly and didn't really want to do it.  I just felt like people should know that there may never be that moment where you are so totally, 100% ready for a baby.

When I was pregnant I was happy and excited, but I am not an emotional person, and I felt like I actually had to fake my excitement level a bit.  Like people expect you to be crazy-over-the-moon excited and that is just not me.  I remember going to visit a friend in the hospital right after she had her baby.  I was already pregnant, and all my other friends wanted me to hold our friend's new baby.  Except I really had no desire to.  And that actually scared me.  Was I not ready for this?  Was I so heartless that I didn't even want to hold a close friend's kid?  What was wrong with me.

After my less-than-smooth birth, the first few days with Baby H did not allow for much bonding.  I didn't get that special time with her right after she was born, I didn't get to count her baby toes and smell her baby skin.  I was too busy puking my guts out and she was in NICU.

The first night we brought her home, it was just The Husband and me, at home, with our baby girl.  It was night time, and dark outside, and she was sleeping peacefully in the living room with us while we layed on the couch in the dark.  It was that moment, with tears in my eyes, that I knew my life would never be the same and that I loved this little baby more than I thought possible.

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She was 6 months old last weekend, and I can honestly say that having a baby was the best decision I have ever made.  I love her so much and can't wait to get home to see her everyday after work.  When I think about the top 5 moments of my life, 2 of them have easily happened with her in just the last 6 months.  She is the sweetest most happy, loving baby in the whole world and I am so glad that she is mine.

So there you have it, from a career-oriented type-A personality that wasn't sure if she was ready for baby, to mushy mommy obsessed with Instagram pictures of my baby girl.  If you are not quite sure if you are ready, I encourage you to take the plunge.  You will never regret it.


Becky @ Petals Lace and Pearls said...

ohhh such a good one. We were kind of the same way. when we were first married, we didn't think we wanted kids, we were young, 23, and wanted time to ourselves, work, travel, and do what we wanted. After 4 years of marriage, we were "ready". not really, but it is like you said, you will never be "ready" for such a life changing event. But we knew we wanted a family, so just left it up to God's timing. His timing ended up being right away. HA!
Now, Cate is the absolute light of our lives, and at 21 months, she is SO SO SO much fun! She has always been fun and all of the baby stages and onto toddler stages have all had their fun moments, but now she is just a blast! I can't believe we waited as long as we did, but at the same time I'm glad we did. We look at her now and think, "why did we wait so long to meet you"?!? Now, I want more and can't wait for that next chapter=)

Lilcloud21 said...

Thank you for posting this. I'm currently expecting and feel exactly the same way. I dragged my feet on the baby decision and finally said the same thing, it's now or never. I know lots of other expectant mommies and just can't generate the same over the moon excitement. Glad we don't all have to feel the same way about babies to be happy mommies.

Jessie said...

Thanks for being honest. The things that you say, sound so like me. I don't get excited over babies and I actually have never even held one. I kinda always wanted my own baby to be the first one I held. Being 30 now and watching everyone else have babies around you, makes you wonder if you should or not. When I see other people with babies and the bond they have with a cute little miniature version of themselves, there is something really special about that! :) Thanks for the post, but I am still not ready. lol