My sincerest apologies for neglecting to finish the Why Didn’t Anyone Tell Me? series. After a few
weeks months of blogging whatever comes to me at 11p.m. the night before, I *think* I’m ready to get back to business and finish the series. If you’re new, you can catch up here. If you’ve been waiting patiently, you can expect to see posts on
- body changes after delivery
- what about Dad? (how does baby change your relationship)
- fore-milk vs. hind-milk
- fighting the postpartum frump (physically and mentally)
- exercise after baby
- creating a birth plan
- child spacing
- caring for a preemie
- transition from a career to WAHM or SAHM
- when to say when (What’s the ideal family size for you?)
What else? What am I missing? I’d like to keep the series focused on pregnancy, delivery, and postpartum issues. If we want, we can always do something on baby and/or toddlers when this is finished.
For now, I need your help answering a reader question.
I’d love to see your “Why Didn’t Anyone Tell me?” series address the topic of how to decide when is the right time to start having children. I’ve really loved reading your posts about “Mommy Come Home” and my husband and I desire for me to be a SAHM/WAHM so we’re trying to get our finances in order, we recently paid off all our debt, are saving up money for a down payment on a small home that we could manage on his income, etc. But we’re struggling through the decision for when to start trying for children.
Of course this is a very personal decision and there is no right answer, so everyone must decide for their own family what is right (or truthfully…sometimes the Lord decides for you when the right time is by giving you a baby unexpectedly!) but I think it would be great to hear from a couple mothers about how they decided, or if they decided.
What a great question! As everyone’s experience will shake out differently, I can only tell our own. When we married, I was the breadwinner. My husband had been coaching at a small, private college, and while that was a great experience for him and opened many doors, it did not put many dollars in the pocketbook.
Because we desired for me to be home with our children, we didn’t actively seek pregnancy for a few months. Six months into our marriage, he secured a teaching job. Yay! Time to have babies, right? Wrong. So very wrong. Three years of infertility later, I’ve always half wondered if we should have just let the chips fall where they may and started trying for a baby immediately.
You know what, though? God is in the details. Always.
Yes, we would have loved to have had a baby 3 years earlier. But, life wouldn’t be what it is now. Without those extra years of teaching, I may not have felt “fulfilled” in my career and may not have enjoyed my time at home as much as I do. Without those extra years of saving two incomes, we wouldn’t be making it without great difficulty on the income we now have. Without those extra years our children would be older, our housing situation would have changed faster, we might not have moved when we did, and I may never have discovered blogging!
Everything happens for a reason, and God’s timing is the only timing I truly trust. (Yes, even when I don’t like it.)
In the end… looking back… we wouldn’t change a thing. (Oh, wait. One thing. We would have taken Natural Family Planning classes before getting married instead of after we had trouble conceiving.)
What about you? When did you start your family? How did you know it was time? Do you wish you had started sooner? Do you wish you had waited? What were you waiting (or not waiting) on? What would you share with a newly married couple about the best time to have children? As this is a highly sensitive matter, I trust that my readers will act with kindness and grace toward each other in the comments.