Has anyone actually planned for perfect and succeeded?
These are my top three excuses to delay starting a family I heard all too often before becoming a mum:
Don’t have one too young- you have so much to do and see before you’re ready for all of that.
Don’t have one too old- it won’t be fair on them, you won’t have the energy.
Make sure you have enough money behind you- think of all their nappies and milk.
“I want to be at least 26 before I have kids.” This was what I used to say before I had Arlo. Why did I put an age on it and assume that is when I would be ready? Is that because it was a more of an acceptable age? Is that because it’s the norm to travel and then get a job after you graduate… Then settle down? Is that even the pattern these days?
I met Arlo’s dad at university and what started off as a friendship quickly grew into a love I still feel so lucky to have. We never imagined completing our final year as parents-to-be and I always thought that we would wait for our careers to get going and have a house of our own before I ever considered getting pregnant. But after being careless with my pill we were struck with the news that I was in fact expecting, way before we could have ever imagined.
Completing my degree was still a must and for my partner, completing his degree and then securing his first graduate job was still a must. Knowing we were soon to be parents just gave us that drive to complete what we had already started. Of course it was tough, balancing pregnancy and my studies was really hard but I got through it. Life was different, but somehow still exactly the same.
Where was we going to live? As we were both still living at home we knew we needed a place of our own. This was also something that we would have done in the future but knowing there would be the three of us soon just gave us that motivation to make securing a home of our own our number one priority.
My point is, graduating, getting our careers off to start and getting our first home, were all in our plans as a couple anyway and just because I was pregnant these things didn’t suddenly take a back seat; they were full steam ahead and just knowing we was bringing another life into the world made us all the more determined to make these things happen.
As the saying goes, if you wait until you’re ready, you’ll be waiting for the rest of your life. Sometimes you have to take chances and risks and just go with what life brings you. I do believe that some people’s circumstances may not be fit for bringing a child into the world and I fully respect people’s choices. Having Arlo has taught me that although on the surface it may not have been the best time to have him, if I had to go back and choose between waiting until I was 26, or becoming a mum at 22 needless to say that I’d choose becoming a mum at 22 over and over and over again.