I am someone who doesn’t make plans for life. Whether it was getting married, buying a house, or having kids, everything just worked out for me when it was time. And believe me, I wasn’t always like this. There was a time when I was keen on making plans and going by the book. But things don’t always go according to plan, do they?
My long-time boyfriend (now husband) and I got hitched seven years back just after my 27th birthday. We never set a benchmark on when/if we would have kids. I was busy with starting my own business and making it on my own. And my husband also got pretty much occupied with his career and firm. Soon after our marriage, like every other couple, we had to deal with the ordeal of hearing from our aunts and cousins when they were going to hear ‘the good news.’ Though it can be frustrating and pressurizing at times when you are constantly pestered by these questions from friends and strangers alike, I always knew we would cross that bridge when we come to it. I know many of my friends who had children just because they felt obligated to take up the role of motherhood once they hit a certain age. People start wondering what’s wrong with you if you are married and haven’t had kids after you are 30 years old: ‘Is something wrong down there?’ ‘Is your husband not able to perform in bed?’ and ‘Are you not happy in your marriage?’
Four years into our marriage, we reached a point where we could call ourselves financially stable (Yay!). We managed to save enough money so that we could travel every year to all the places on our bucket list. Traveling has always been a passion of mine and my husband’s. So it meant the world to us that we were now financially stable to explore the world without our bank balance taking a major blow. Seven years later, I was keen on embracing motherhood and decided to talk about it with my partner. He was thrilled to start a family of our own and we began trying for kids. Thankfully we didn’t have to wait too long. I gave birth to my daughter at 34, and am now a proud mom of a baby girl. I believe having my daughter was one of the most powerful and precious moments of my life, and it changed me as a person for the better. When I look back, if I had my child a few years into our marriage, I know I wouldn’t be capable of giving her everything which I can now. Whether it is financial stability, love, care, or our family. I feel it is important to be happy with yourself first and be in a space where you are emotionally and physically ready to take on the huge responsibility of another human being. For me, it took seven years, and for someone else, it could be 3, 6, or 9 for that matter. We cannot put an age or number on when a woman should decide to give birth or if at all she should. It is entirely her decision and her partner’s. And it definitely shouldn’t be done because of societal or family pressure, or because of guilt.
Because I didn’t jump into motherhood right after our marriage, I was able to take time for myself to do everything that I wanted to do. Though there were many speed bumps in our marriage, we were able to work it out and build an even stronger foundation because we had all the time in the world to focus on anyone but ourselves. I had time to grow, mature, self-reflect and achieve at least some of my ambitions if not all. So, there were no regrets or guilt or concerns but pure joy when I held my baby in my arms for the first time.