Of course it’s hard for me to admit it, but I’ll be honest. I’m not trying to hide the fact that I am pregnant and over 35 years old. In fact, most of my OB/Gyn appointments make sure to include the words: “advanced maternal age” in all of my paperwork. As I sit here, 25 weeks pregnant, I just have to laugh at it.
Is it such a bad thing to have waited to have children? Are we stereotyped because of it? Just for fun, I wanted to come up with all the pros and cons to being an older mom.
Here’s a little background of why we are older parents. The hubby and I got married 9 years ago. At first, we didn’t know if we wanted to have children or not. We definitely went back and forth on the idea, weighing the huge decision on our minds for years. We saw our family members having children, meanwhile, we were enjoying the life: working, partying, traveling and buying anything we wanted.
It wasn’t until our trip to Thailand in 2013 that we agreed that we were actually ready and wanting to become parents. After 6 months of trying, we finally got pregnant. After 2 months we miscarried. A couple months later, we got pregnant again and in 2014 we had our first child. At the age of 34, we were first time parents.
We were both full-time working parents, who came home after work to see our child for a couple hours a day before she went to bed. Every minute that I wasn’t working, I dedicated to spending my time with my precious daughter.
When she was a year old, I decided that it was time we had another child. We were 35 years old and had a feeling that if we wanted to do it, it should be now. Again, it took us months to conceive. And again, before the pregnancy with our second child, we had another miscarriage. Fast forward to January 2016, our second child is born, and we are now 36 years old.
When you are pregnant and over 35 years old, the medical world now considers you to be “advanced maternal age”. Many factors are looked at when you are trying to get pregnant and you are older. For instance, fertility decreases and potential pregnancy complications increases.
Now that I am 38 years old <gasp!>, and pregnant with our third child, my number one concern is staying healthy and trying to avoid any complications as best as I can. Luckily, I have worked out with all of my pregnancies, maintained a healthy weight with all of them, and never developed any medical conditions.
Here are MY pros and cons to being an older mom:
- Finished college younger
- Years of corporate work experience under our belt
- Travelled the world
- Partying with other friends and co-workers
- Sleeping in on the weekends
- Working out and training whenever we wanted (for races and various athletic events)
- Learning from other friends who have children
- Financially more ready
- We have an established household
(Although EVERYTHING on this list could be accomplished when you’re older, I’m just referring to enjoying these things at a younger age, with other colleagues or friends at the same time)
- I feel like my patience is thinner than it would have been if I was younger
- I have less energy than when I was younger, so I feel like I’m not as playful
- I see my friends who had children when they were younger at the same stage in life and I am just starting my parenting journey
- I feel like I will be judged as “old” when my children are in middle or high school
- Slight pressure to have children close apart in age, because you are getting older
That’s it! To me, my list of the pros outweighed the cons. I wanted to write this for a couple of years now, but never thought that I would have the guts to do it. I was always afraid of telling people my age. As I get older, I can feel the pressures of it. Within this business, there are soooo many younger mommas out there, I can’t help but feel like I stick out like a sore thumb, sometimes.
I’m trying harder to embrace my age, I really am. I am so curious to see how baby #3 will impact my mood and my physical abilities. As if chasing 2 toddler girls around isn’t a
challenge fun-filled day, already….what’s adding one more right?
If I feel good, and I don’t have any physical problems, then I don’t see any reason why I need any special treatment or care for my pregnancies. I hope that this inspires other women who feel like they are too old to have children in their late 30’s or early 40’s. Age is, after all, just a number.
How old were YOU when you had your children? Do you think your age played a large role in how you raised them? To all of my momma friends who had kids in their late 30’s, show me some love below by commenting how you feel !