I was 37 when my first child was born. I'll be 40 in a little over two weeks. This is our second -- and will be our last -- child.
We didn't choose to wait quite so long to start our family -- it took us years to get pregnant the first time (but only took a month and a half this time!
), but I admit I'm glad it worked out that we had to wait. I don't think I'd have been nearly as good a mother when I was younger. That's nothing against younger moms at all -- it's just me knowing who I was back then. And knowing who I am now. Back then I wasn't diligent about researching choices for myself much less a child, or understanding consequences fully, or my impact on the environment and others, or how choices I make can have lifelong effects, and so on. I was very immature (and selfish and fairly irresponsible) in my 20s. If 20-something-year-old me offered to babysit my child now, I'd politely decline.
But I've known some mamas who were much younger than I am, who are magnificent parents. And I've known some my own age or older, who are craptastic, truth be told. Age has little to do with it. Maturity is far more key, I think. And I simply wasn't ready back then. I'm glad fate worked out so we had to wait. ETA: But I have to wonder, had things worked out differently, would I have matured a lot faster? I don't know. I know becoming a parent is a big impetus for growing up fast. I'd like to think I wouldn't have been such a terrible mother back then, but who knows.
Though I have to admit that physically it's much harder this pregnancy than the prior one -- not so much because I'm older I think (because I was in great shape before I got pregnant -- very active, big into yoga, ate very healthy/organic, etc.) but because I have a two year old who doesn't nap.
That has made a HUGE difference, honestly. First pregnancy I could nap whenever I wasn't working, and I quit work early on. I could listen to my body and rest when I needed and that was wonderful. This time I am getting by on around 6-ish hours of sleep at night total, if that, while waking every 2 hours to pee, typically. So it's interrupted sleep. And naps are a rarity. So that's made it much harder. I cannot imagine having more than one toddler to deal with right now. Those of you with more than one already are superheroes. Seriously.