People often ask me what it’s like to be an “old” mom. They don’t say it like that, but that’s what they mean. They say things like, “How does it feel to have young children in your forties?” or “How do you deal with little kids at YOUR age?”. Those kinds of things.
I say I feel blessed. Let me explain.
You see, I’ve seen both sides of the coin. I was a young parent (not as young as a lot of my southern cohorts, but young by my standards). I was barely 22 when I had my first minion. She was gorgeous. She was perfect. I wasn’t ready for her, financially or emotionally. I loved her with all of my heart and soul, but we struggled and I wasn’t in a strong relationship. I was a kid. Then number two came along, not planned, and I wasn’t ready, at the age of 27.
We muddled through. We were happy. We survived 2 marriages (my fault, not theirs) and a lot of macaroni and cheese…together. It wasn’t always fun. But I wasn’t ready for them. Financially, as most young parents (not all, and I won’t generalize, plus kudos to those of you who are) aren’t. I just wasn’t ready. Putting food on the table was my focus. We didn’t do a lot of fun stuff. When we did, I sacrificed healthy meals for macaroni and cheese and hot dogs. It was a trade off.
Luckily for me (us), their birthdays were both in the summer. That meant they got clothes for their birthdays from relatives, then clothes for Christmas from their relatives. Yes, I had their wardrobes covered. And their toys. I guess I planned that part well at least. Although, none of that was the plan. But my goodness, I loved those girls, obviously I still do, and wanted more for them. I wanted to provide them with more. But I couldn’t. I wasn’t prepared. I wasn’t ready.
And then I was presented with the opportunity, when I was ready, to have children at an “advanced maternal age” with my current husband. I wondered, I worried. Would I be here for them when they were grown? Would I see them grow? Could I, would I, be able to do this at 39, and then 41? You bet your ass I was ready this time, and it’s so much easier this go round. I actually highly recommend being a parent of “advanced maternal age”. I was ready. And you know what? My babies don’t want for crap. They have all they need and then some.
I’m here. I’m present. And I don’t have to stress the small stuff anymore. Well, other than them, because they’re still small, and I stress their little happiness. It’s awesome being a mom of “advanced maternal age”. It’s great being financially stable and knowing that when I want to take them on an adventure, I can, without worrying about the unhealthy meals I’ll have to feed them for a MONTH to make up for the financial sacrifice of fun.
So, if you ask me what it’s like to be an “old mom”, I have to say, it’s AWESOME. I was ready for these babies. And I’m still young enough to handle the daily life of parenthood. Parenting in your 40s is like grandparenting on steroids. You get to spoil them, you can afford it, and you get to keep them full time. Let me tell you, there’s nothing like this in the whole world!
If you’re of “advanced maternal age” and wondering if you should take the plunge, DO IT! There’s nothing quite like this. I’m just amazed by the beauty of my world every day. Although I still worry if I’ll be around to see their milestones, I’m thankful that these babies have graced my life, and that I’m at a point in my life where they don’t have to need, or want, for anything.
So, yes, I’m happy to be an “old mom”, just in case you wanted to ask!
This is such a great post! I had my first daughter at 22, too and definitely was NOT ready for it. Wasn’t ready again, two years later when her sister was born. I’ve also had two more, and I know at my “advanced age” of 45, I’d be a much better mom now than I was back then. No option of having any more now, but it’s ok. =)
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I love this. First, you are not old. Stop using that word. Second, you are only as “old” as you feel. And girl, you act years younger than your age. Age is just a number. You are an amazing mommy. I LOVE that we have kids the same age. You are an excellent example of being an awesome mom. We each have one life to live, and we should live it however we want. That means, having kids at a time when it is not “normal”. Who needs normal anyway. I hear it is boring. 🙂
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