“Is it harder being pregnant when you’re…you know…a little older?”
I was on the phone with a dear friend of mine when she asked that gem of a question. She’s in her mid-thirties and she’s ready to start a family but she’s nervous. Not only because the responsibility of being a parent is immense…but everywhere you look, moms in their mid-30s and 40s are labeled GERIATRIC, MID-LIFE MAMAS, ANTIQUE MOMS…and the cringe-worthy list goes on and on.
If you’re “older” and are considering having a baby or you are pregnant or you have little ones right now…let me give you this advice: don’t google anything about “having a baby in your late 30s or 40s.” I swear they automatically sign you up for AARP and send you a year-long supply of Geritol.
Let me start by saying this: I’m 40 and pregnant with baby #4. When I was in my 20s and 30s, the idea of turning 40 nauseated me. I thought “God that’s old!” And I definitely thought I would be done having kids before 40. Nope. God had other plans. 😉
Well guess what? At 40, I have never felt better physically, emotionally or mentally. You know why? Because my “give a crap about the small stuff” meter turned off. And that’s why this is the perfect time to have another baby.
This is why being a DIRT-OLD, ANTIQUE, GERIATRIC, MID-LIFE, OLDHEAD, OVER-THE-HILL mom, is perfectly perfect. (I certainly hope you read the sarcasm there lol)
We don’t sweat the small stuff. My kid ate a bowl of ice cream for breakfast? Well at least it has dairy in it. Obviously I am not trying to make a habit about this but if my kids don’t eat a whole grain with a fruit every morning…I’m not losing sleep worrying about their vitamin intake. And I’ve come to grips that my house will always have clutter. Toys, board games, blankets pillows and countless amounts of Legos will always be at my feet. It’s a home…not a museum. And despite what I said BEFORE HAVING KIDS, I’m going to whip out my phone to distract and calm my child if it means I can have a meal out in peace.
We’re more confident than ever. I remember when I was younger, I would hear women say that the 40s were the best of their lives. Back then I thought they were just trying to make themselves feel better for being “older.” I can tell you…I have never felt better. I own and standby every decision I make…and if someone doesn’t like it, too bad. It’s no longer about other people’s expectations of me…it’s about what I want for me and my family. I’ve earned my stripes in my life so far…my journey has been hard and has definitely knocked me down…but I never stayed down. I used to stand in front of the mirror and pick apart everything I thought was wrong with my body. Now? I’m like…hell yeah girl…you’ve had three babies and you’re making another one.
We don’t judge. Hey, if I see you at school drop-off or pickup and your hair is in a messy knot on the top of your head…you have sweatpants on that are 4 sizes too big and your sweatshirt may or may not be from 1996…I’m giving you a high-five. There will be zero judgment from me. If your child is acting a fool in the doctor’s office, grocery store or at church and you pull out a candy bar to bribe them to be quiet…I’m giving you another high-five. You do you. I’m not going to give you a side-eye or a lecture…I’m here to lift you up in support…we’re all in the same tribe.
We know what’s important. It’s not about the fancy summer camps, the most expensive bookbag, the organic and homemade everything, the toddler music class that is impossible to get into, the enormous house, the fancy car, the perfectly matched designer outfit, the update family photo every 6-months, the perfect Christmas card…oh I could go on and on. It’s about US. It’s about our TIME. It’s about getting on the floor with all of those little, tiny (but could pierce your foot) Legos and building something with your kids. It’s about sitting on your daughter’s bed to hear all about her first crush. It’s about playing peekaboo over and over just to hear the belly laughs. It’s about letting our kids know they are our first, our last, our everything.
Ignore the labels. Tell the internet trolls and the non-solicited advice giving haters that this is your story…and you’ll write it the way you want to.
It’s always fun to add an unexpected chapter.
Kinda like baby #4 at 40 😉