As summer ends and we transition into Fall (yay! Fall food and boots!), we prepare the nursery for our bundle of joy named Olivia (!!), try out midwives, go to doctor’s appointments, cook heartier meals, and make/meet new friends. It’s a new phase in my life, that not only worries me, it excites me beyond end. I’ve read recently about bloggers who are pregnant or who have kids, and they’ve lost followers, readers and friends in the process. At first I thought, what the hell is wrong with people? Just because she’s having a baby or has children running around, you don’t like her anymore? Come on! But then I got to thinking about it— having children changes your life, your perspective, priorities, perhaps even your purpose…. does that mean, once we have children, we become Mommy Bloggers? Not necessarily, but there is a change, I’ve noticed. And also, people are at different points in their lives, and can’t really relate or get into that place. I get that. I just don’t concern myself with it- I have friends that have had babies. I know their focus has shifted, and I totally dig it. Life is about transitioning from one phase to another, and quite often you’re waiting around for things to happen, or change naturally, or you try harder to get there.
I’m not a fan of friends who have these opinions that having children, getting married, buying a house is gross. Everyone lives the way they want to, and no, that’s not settling. I’m not the type to go marry a man and have children with him in order to be a stay-at-home Mom that bakes cakes and helps with science projects just because that is what I feel my purpose is in life. I’m completely in love, happily married, and incredibly excited to have a baby. I will be baking cakes (pfft, like I didn’t do that anyway) and eventually I may help with the science projects. But I know in my heart that this isn’t my only purpose, and it for dang sure wasn’t my only motivation in life. The truth is- I grew up in a difficult home, where money was scarce, and I had a serious troubling relationship with my even more troubling parents…. it shaped me in a lot of ways. But I learned to stop saying sorry for the mistakes I didn’t make, how to be my own person, and say no to things or people I do not want in my life. I learned to be strong and independent early, so I pursued my dreams, learned to value my dollars, and moved around a lot. I don’t regret any of it, except maybe letting bullies get to me along the way.
But I didn’t settle. And I’m not telling you this to defend myself from something I worry about—- settling, for me, would have been never leaving home, continuing on the easiest path in front of me, buying a house down the street from where I grew up, marrying, having children, and being content with having never reached my potential or lived out any of my adventurous dreams. Some people, and I say people, not just women— are completely satisfied with that; that is their dream. I would have been miserable with that, I’m a mover and a shaker with feet that itch for new places every once in a while, and I absolutely adore children. I always wanted children, hell I became a children’s/young adult librarian and taught preschool just because I love being around kids. They make me happy. My husband makes me laugh nonstop with his ridiculous shenanigans, and more than once people have chuckled at the possibility of the two of us being parents since we aren’t super serious people, we don’t long for fancy things and expensive cars, we’re happy with our apartment for now, eating extremely good food, and playing mario kart. Maybe one day a house will be in store for us, mostly because we want a garden, I want to paint the walls, decorate for the seasons and have a stable life for our child(ren). But we’ll get there when we get there.
The thing is, I met up with a group of Moms yesterday, and I had an amazing time. And they aren’t just/only Moms; they are strong ladies, helpful, caring, funny, relaxed and down to earth. They commiserate without making you feel like you are a whiny brat, share their experiences, understand not everything is lollipops and sunshine, and even better, they have fascinating careers. I left there inspired, and happy. And looking forward to future meet-ups. Now this isn’t to say I don’t know or have other expat friends, I do, and I leave them feeling just as happy, but…. This is a big transition phase; knowing my nights are going to be longer at home, but shorter outside of home, that eventually I will have to set up play dates, and do baby-riffic things. I know that there’s a lot more in store for us when baby Olivia arrives, and I know from other parents that it helps to have a healthy mindset to understand how much having a baby will change our lives. I have no unrealistic expectations, other than knowing that I will need to be surrounded by people that appreciate and respect that we will have children how that is going to change us, and in essence, our relationship with them. And they are still up to meeting for coffee, even though baby will be with me in a stroller, I may be a little distracted sometimes, and I may talk about my child a lot. I won’t be drinking loads of alcohol (I’m not that big of a fan, and that’s the last thing I want to do in front of my kids anyway, I should know), but I will try to keep my commitments assuming all is well with baby. So I will spend time with other Moms, or friends that like babies and don’t look at them as if they are a nuisance.
Time is always changing, but as does life, sometimes in a small way and sometimes in the largest way possible. And this is the largest positive change I’ll ever be lucky enough to embrace, and so with it, I’m so happy to have made friends that I think will be with me along the way.