Parenting: the constant unknown
A young couple considers the scary and wonderful consequences of deciding to be parents for the first time.
After almost 2 years of marriage and as we head for 9 years as a couple, my husband and I have made the life-changing decision to have a baby. Not at this very moment (that would be especially awkward as I'm sitting typing this), but soon, when the time is right.
This decision was not one that we made lightly. We considered and discussed and planned (as much as you can), but the decision was ultimately not a hard one to make. We're going to be parents - much to the delight of my sister who has two children of her own, but no nieces or nephews yet.
Having worked here at Parent24 for the last 7 years, I've learned so many things from parents like you. I've picked up tips and I've come to realise that becoming a parent is so much more than just looking after a tiny baby, feeding it, clothing it etc.
There is so much that I have absolutely no control over.
Facing the unknown
There are so many questions that simply cannot be answered until they happen to me personally. It's a terrifying and exhilarating experience.
Here are a few of the things that come to mind.
• Will I be able to fall pregnant with ease or will we struggle?
• Will my pregnancy be easy or really hard?
• What will my (already strange) eating habits be like?
• What will my birth be like?
• Where should I give birth?
• Will I be able to breastfeed or will I struggle like so many mothers do?
• Will our baby have something considered "abnormal" for us to deal with?
• How will we change as parents?
• Will we be okay as a couple?
• Will we be okay as people, as humans? Or will we fall apart?
Add about a million more onto this list and you'll have an idea of what is often buzzing through my head. To many of the questions, I already know the answers. Sleep will be scarce. Money will be spent on all things baby. We will change. And to those things I say, come what may.
There are also so many scenarios and situations that I have considered which are strange and scary and not the norm of "where will the money come from?", but rather, things that no one can really explain to you until you've had your own baby. Perhaps I overthink absolutely everything (spoiler: I do), but I've tried to make myself see into the future and consider all of the possibilities.
Here are a few things I already know for sure as my husband and I head into this new (scary, crazy, exciting, terrifying) chapter of our lives.
Am I ready to give up everything to be a good mother? Definitely.
Am I willing to give up on sleep and relaxation? Yes.
Do I want to be a mother more than anything in the world? With all my heart.
Will we love the little person God blesses us with the privilege of being parents to? Absolutely.
At the end of the day, I may have given this more thought than most women in their mid-twenties who make huge decisions like this, but I'm okay with that. That's how I operate, that's how my husband knows to deal with me and that means we'll make the best decisions we possibly can when the time comes. The right time.
Did you overthink being a parent or do you wing it? What do you think works best?
Disclaimer: The views of columnists published on Parent24 are their own and therefore do not necessarily represent the views of Parent24.