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Well, either hell froze over or we simply lost our minds, but after 14 years of happy marriage, my sweetie and I decided to try to have a baby. We're expecting a baby boy in early December! In January we decided to "just try it" for a year or so even though lots of tv shows and magazine articles led us to believe that at 39 we were probably too old to conceive without fertility drugs or in vitro treatments. So we bought a pregnancy planning book, started popping pre-natal vitamins, avoided alcohol and followed the book's instructions. Two months later, we were stunned to learn that the plan actually worked! Are we crazy? What if we're not mature enough to be perfect parents? What if our child is as wild, loud and out of control as our nephews (aka the pro-choice poster children). What if we never have peace and quiet or get to go out on a date or have time to do anything fun ever again? Will it be too weird to have a squalling stranger come live with us when we're used to a happy, tranquil home? What if I suddenly turn into my mother and morph from a fun-loving, reasonably intelligent and logical person into an irrational, shrieking, child-abusing bitch? Yikes! My brother assures me that parenting will be quite easy (simply imagine what our mother would do and choose the exact opposite). I think this adventure will be considerably more difficult than that! Luckily, my husband will make a fantastic father so the unfortunate baby will have at least one competent parent. Hopefully the three of us will be as happy as a family as my husband and I have been as a couple. If not, I guess there's always boarding school! Ready or not, we'll be parents in just 5 more months!
Katchal-let me be the first to say CONGRATULATIONS!!! I think it's wonderful news and you'll make an absolutely terrific mother! Think about it-- haven't you succeeded at everything you've done, despite your repeated conviction that you couldn't possibly and this time you were going to fall flat on your face? Not that you won't feel terrified-- and certain that you're doing everything possible wrong-- what new mother doesn't? But there's nothing like a kid to develop your perspective. You'll see that little personality forming from the moment his eyes lock onto yours in the delivery room. You're embarking on a great adventure-- and your brother's perfectly right. You know what you don't want to do and that's often a better guide than some vague idea of the 'right' thing to do could ever be. And, as you say yourself, there are two of you pulling the oars, so your direction isn't going to go far wrong. I'm just delighted! Be sure to stop by often and post all the milestones!
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CONGRATULATIONS!! Wow-that's just wonderful! You'll be fantastic parents. A \"Grama's\" advice: Don't leave him alone in the bathtub. Don't insist that he 'clean up his plate'. Don't be a germ freak. (studies have shown that a little dirt builds the immune system) Let him have pets. (another 'study': children that grow up w/two or more pets DON'T have allergies!!) That's it-that's all you have to know! Patty
The meaning of life is inherent in the connectons we make to others through honor and obligation.
Congratulations! The trick to good parenting is not knowing everything before you begin. It's recognizing when things are off-course and seeking more information and wisdom right away to get them back on course. Since that's apparently the way you approach all of your other projects, you're all set. Date a lot for the next few months and record your thoughts on how wonderful they were. You can read or listen to those during the months when dating doesn't sound nearly as enticing as sleeping does. I received an email from an online friend today who makes parenting look easy. He and his wife were both working on doctorates in the DC area between the arrival of their first son and their second. They were world travelers and took the kids with them to India. When the younger one was around two, they moved to Cambodia. From there, they travelled all over Southeast Asia and back to the States to see their families when they could. A couple years ago, they left Cambodia for the Silk Road. They live in Almaty, Kazakhstan, where both parents are saving lives and changing the world and taking the boys on the most incredible camping trips. This year, they adopted a little girl from India. It took months and several trips to India, but she's now in Almaty with them and will be part of whichever adventure comes next. May it be as easy, enjoyable, and full of adventure for you and your husband, too.
- Patty Newbold
Director, Sher Success Teams
Marriage Education Author/Speaker - assumelove.com - enjoybeingmarried.com
Director, Sher Success Teams
Marriage Education Author/Speaker - assumelove.com - enjoybeingmarried.com
Two months? Excuse me for one second while I indulge in jealousy -- if it had taken us two months when we first started "trying" -- oh, wait! I'd have a teenager right now! So I guess I'm not jealous after all! Your life will change. I could say "Try to be ready for those first months when you'll crave sleep," but pretty soon you'll understand that from the inside out. And since text lacks tone of voice, I mean that in the warmest, friendliest possible manner. It's like a gauntlet that new parents run, and then you're in the club forever. Enjoy every second. When I was pregnant, I had a friend (a man) who told me he loved being a parent, and I would, too. And I do. Sure, I make mistakes, but at least they are different from my mom & dad's mistakes. In a couple of months you'll probably be watching feet or elbows under your skin. That completely cracked me up. Katchal, this brings up so many memories and they are about 93% good ones! So I'll just shut up & say "Congratulations!" and "Enjoy!"
CONGRATULATIONS, CATCHALL!! Now for some different feedback.
I like the humor in this, but how much of the parenting does your brother do? One of the biggest complaints I've heard is that fathers don't do enough. That might be tough if it happens, particularly since you've probably had an egalitarian marriage to date. My mother was 38 and my father 44 when I was born 61 years ago; they died of separate causes when I was a teenager. I'm also saddled with a cluster of congenitally based disabilities. So there are plenty of times I've wondered about the wisdom of couples having children at midlife. However, medicine has improved dramatically over the years, so these risk factors are not what they once were. My parents today might well have lived to a ripe old age. And hopefully wouldn't have taken parenting so seriously. It took a genealogy project to really understand what they were like as people. I'm also at a comfortable enough point in my life to realize how much and for how many decades I had numbed myself to mother's long illness and their deaths. I now feel that if I had not been born, one less human being would be able to appreciate what the world offers. It's never too soon to plan financially for the child's future, since there's always the chance that younger couples can die too. I had a very modest trust fund to get me through undergraduate school and live like any other middle class student of the day. However, I don't recommend trust funds as they're not a good way to learn money management. Better to teach the child those skills. As it happened, my parents were frugal and I need relatively little to live comfortably. But I had a god-awful time learning that credit cards are nothing more than a recipe for disaster. Having said all of that, any child of yours will be lucky to have loving, intelligent and still youthful parents like you and your husband. So, plan well and enjoy your time with the child. Best, daniMy brother assures me that parenting will be quite easy (simply imagine what our mother would do and choose the exact opposite).
And just in case you have a bad day - so far, my goddaughter has scratched the baby, dropped the baby and managed to dislocate this elbow while putting on a shirt ... and she's a really, really careful GOOD mother. Mom is a tad frazzled, but at 10 months, baby is starting to cruise (new term to me for holding onto things for support while walking), has the best laugh in the world, and is thriving. So once he appears in the world, always remember to keep laughing!
Isn't it neat to see their little hands and spines and things! Pretty soon you'll be seeing the "mouse under the blanket" when he starts moving his little feet-ies under your skin! I used to laugh about every time he did that. When I got to the stage of having a big pregnant belly, I felt like Santa Claus when I laughed. We called laughing "baby massage".
My husband and I waited too mostly because we were not committed to the idea of being parents. We had a ton of fun for 5 years just the two of us! When we decided to "see what happened" it was also very soon like you. The first month of new born baby was challenging and a bit of a surprise to me, I felt I might be more of a natural (maybe that is natural though). My biggest hurdle was that my child did not breast feed well and I did not know how to teach him to do it. I spent the first eight weeks feeling anxious every time it was time for him to eat. Then I decided to just pump breast milk and let him take it from a bottle. I think that decision really helped me. I did that for four months then switched to formula. I hate to admit that I really enjoyed having my body back after a whole year! My biggest fear of parenting was not being able to be "selfish" for my time and passions. Both my husband and I had that fear so we have made sure to give each other (and both of us at once) complete childless time. I don't feel guilty about being selfish for my time and passions because I want to teach my son how to pursue his passions as well and how can I if I am giving up my passions to spend every moment with him? As a family we have made small compromises and adjustments along the way in order to keep all of us happy and it is working wonderfully! The part when he starts to move and kick about is really special, I felt that was a start to the bond between mother and child. No one knows when they kick and move except you...it's your own private relationship. Congratulations!
Congrats Katchal (and Hubby)! I had my first and only child at the ripe old age of 42! No ill effects for either him, or me! He is now 9 (will be 10 in December) and is thriving! With my background I was certain I was the worst possible choice for a mom. He assures me almost daily nothing could be further from the truth. Hubby ensures for me all the 'alone' time I need 'cuz he's completely enamored with our little boy too! And best of all, our son keeps us young! In summary then, in my humble opinion, late life (is 39 late life?) is a great time to have a first child and December is a great month to have a boy child! Congrats again!
Surprise, Mama! Little Davis arrived last Sunday night - 4 weeks early! (A scenario we had never considered in our planning for the big event) When my water broke unexpectedly on Saturday, my husband called the doctor and rushed me to the hospital with just the insurance cards, driver's license, and house keys - no mommy bag, no daddy bag, no birthing plan, no focal point object, no special pillow, no music, no pre-addressed birth announcements, no cute coming home outfit, or any of the other stuff we had planned to prepare ahead of the birth. I expected the doctor to send us home to wait for the labor to start, but they immediately admitted me and set up monitors for the baby. My poor freaked out husband had to go home, find the checklist in the \"What to Expect\" book and gather the necessary objects. What a hero! Anyway, here's our little cutie...
Last edited by katchal on Mon Aug 06, 2007 8:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.