I suppose you could say that I am having an attack of "cold feet" and am looking for some reassuance/kind hearted advice.
Lovely fiance and I are getting married in 5 months and would like to start a family ASAP (as long as bump stay hidden under wedding dress hehe). I am very excited about this, and know that we are ready in all/most ways.
Just one question- What was your plan? your life plan?
Now that the baby part of my/our plan is coming along quickly im starting to get a little bit scared.
How did you balance what you wanna do with study/work/travel AND factor in bubba?
Did your priorities change once bubba came along? Was that good or bad?
I am just stuck in the "oh my god but i could be spending 5 years somewhere in China instead".. I dont mind about how it affect career or study.. just a bit scared about the travel thing.
Is this totally self centered? :( ??? I hope not. A bubba is what I want- just would love to hear from other mummas and daddas who have fit bubba into their travel/career/study lives!
I hope this doesnt sound foolish and self centred!
Happy Vegetarian Gal and Techie Man- Newly Wed!!! Expecting "Albi" Christmas 2012
Looking forward to
My general advice is - things have a way of working themselves out. There is no such thing as a perfectly planned life (and that would be sooo boring if there was). I've always believed if you really wanted something you could do it/make it happen and there wasn't a set way that things had to be done.
When I was in medical school I thought people who had kids while in school were crazy, when I was resident I thought, geez, I wish I had kids while I was in school now I will have to wait until I'm attending. When I finished residency I wished I had had kids earlier and felt rushed to start a family. On top of that I always was amazed at my friends who had been so career focused who after having kids seemed to lose all professional ambition - I couldn't believe how much work they were "giving up". That is - until I had my daughter. I now work part time, have little current interest in academics and I'm expecting babies 2 & 3 (twins - complete curveball). Yes it is scary, no it was not part of any plan, yes things are working out and I am very happy. I don't doubt that I will eventually go back to full time and pour myself back into my career at some point, however I realize that there are many aspects of my life that I didn't take into account in my "plan". On the flip side I know plenty of professionals with kids who went back to work at 10wks postpartum, manage full time academic positions, travel and have fulfilling home lives (they must sleep less than I!) etc, so don't think that you will automatically want to cut back on work after your babe arrives. And travel is still possible with kids - it is just different - as is almost everything.
Hope this was helpful.
mama to dd 8/09 and dd + ds 11/11
I agree with PP, things have a way of just working out. When I graduated high school I had a plan to go to college, then get married, and then after a couple years of marriage, have a baby. Well, I got pregnant my first year of college! (oopsie!) and I found that my son gave me even more motivation to do well in school, get a good job, etc. I got married after I graduated and then had another baby when I was in graduate school. My life events certainly didn't go as originally planned, but looking back, timing wasn't that big of a deal. I dealt with situations as they came up. It worked out.
Also, I found that what I wanted changed after kids. I no longer wanted to own my own practice for example, I wanted a job that allowed me more flexibility and time to be with my children because I couldn't imagine anything more important than being with them.
It is normal to worry about how a child will change your life. It is a big change for sure, but it is so wonderful and fulfilling too.
I didn't travel as much as I wanted to before kids, but I also wanted to have kids while I was in my 20s, so we went ahead and stopped using birth control. We were financially stable and iin the right place in our marriage and we decided not to wait until we were completely "ready" to have kids because we figured, how can you ever really be ready? That said, we were very strongly committed to creating the best home possible for our kids, so it wasn't like we were living a total party lifestyle or anything like that.
When I got pg I was disappointed about the lost opportunities for traveling the world and grand adventures but really I was 27...if those things were so very high on my list I would have done them instead of slogging through years of building my career, so I just owned up to my choices and let go of any regrets. I really did want our baby! I also let go of some expectations of what could and couldn't be done with kids. I was really disappointed about not being able to train hard for a sport climbing trip we had planned about a month after I found out I was pg...but we went anyway, and I trained enough. I climbed and and I climbed lead 3mo pregnant! Was much better than not going at all.
Having kids changes a lot of things but it doesn't change everything. We were big into backcountry camping and scrambling before kids, now we camp in the front country and do marked hiking trails but we feel we are priming the kids for more adventurous trips when they're school age. If we waited to have kids who knows how long we would have waited...we'd be older and have less energy dealing with babies and less energy for cool trips on the other side of that phase.
I also really like the idea that travel is an opportunity to look for similarities across cultures and universal human experience...and what could be more universal that raising a child?
FWIW, if you really want to have great adventures, you'll do it. I know a mom who backcountry camps with her DH, 5yo, and 1yo. I know a (Canadian) mom who IS living in China with her 6yo and 3yo. There was a great article in Mothering a few months back about a family who volunteered on an organic farm for a vacation. Parenting does not close all doors, it just means that you can't have as many doors open at the same time.