A friend & I were having a discussion about life; marriage, kids, etc. and it's so funny because it seems as soon as a man & woman wed the 1st question that comes after they say "I Do" is usually "When are you going to start having kids?". Most people aren't even married a week before family members begin rushing them to start a family of their own. I think people forget that marriage itself is a JOB. It takes hard work, sacrifice, dedication, and so much more to make a marriage work and adding children to a new union is not always a great idea.
I can remember when Juwan & I wed, a co-worker gave me a bit of advice. She suggested waiting at least 7 years to start a family. I was 23 years old when we got married & Juwan was 27. When you are in your 20's you aren't really mature enough to understand what "MARRIAGE" really is. Yes, I thought I knew what it was, but honestly I didn't. When the co-worker suggested waiting 7 years, I can remember thinking "I'm not having children after 30 because that's too old". Well here I am 31 & almost 7 months pregnant! I now understand what the co-worker meant when she advised us to wait; get to know each other, work out the kinks, travel, enjoy each other's company, THEN add children to the mix.
I remember a relative of mine would ask me all the time "When are you gonna have a baby", "What are y'all waiting for, your not getting any younger", "When are you going to give your mom & dad a grandkid". Each time this relative asked me I would cringe inside and just want to cry. I can recall one day being asked by this person and I was so fed up with the inquiries into my womb that I said with an attitude "You know you ask me all the time about me having some kids, what if I couldn't have children and just didn't tell you?" (not knowing at the time that we would struggle to conceive) After this conversation the questions stopped.. I guess they got the point.
When Juwan & I decided to try & conceive it was OUR choice alone, no one else. When a couple makes the decision to plan a pregnancy, most don't go into it thinking they won't be successful. Well we tried almost 2 years and it was a long emotional process. Most couples don't disclose how many times they are having sex & that they are trying to conceive because honestly, it's no one's business. During the time we were trying, people would still inquire and it would hurt so bad because I would want to yell "Hey, we are trying but it's not easy for everyone" but as I said before, it was nobody's business.
After some people found out we were pregnant (before Mylah's Trisomy 18 diagnosis) people responded to the news by saying "It's about time" which I found to be very RUDE and INSENSITIVE! What is it about time for? I want folks to know that if Juwan & I had our way, we would have conceived 2 years ago! But you know there's a man, you may have heard of him.. GOD? yeah HIM and HE had HIS plan for us.
What happened to "congrats" or "I'm happy for you"? I got the "It's about time" response from more than one person and it really hurt me.
Speaking as a woman who at the time wanted to be a mother so bad, people should know that when you are trying month after month to conceive a child and you constantly get 1 line on the pregnancy test it is emotionally draining. You begin to doubt yourself. You start to feel like you are less of a woman. You place blame on yourself & your spouse. You think GOD is punishing you for sins committed in your life. You begin to think that you'll never be a mother and you'll always be the one borrowing kids to take to birthday parties & Disney on Ice. You'll always be the one crying inside on Mother's Day. You won't ever be able to buy your husband his 1st Father's Day card. Each month you try to convince yourself that this month is going to be different because you calculated the days and you have the ovulation kits and fertility apps on your phone. But each month its the same result... Negative... No baby.... & each month the questions play in your head, the many inquiries into your womb and.... It hurts
The struggle to conceive has helped me to appreciate Mylah more than ever.. I'm so glad that things given to us according to our plan because honestly my marriage wasn't in a place it should have been to handle a baby.
Times are changing now as you can see. Most people are waiting to have children. They want to make sure they are established and can afford children. Most of all they are doing it when they are ready. So until you hear the news that they are expecting, some words of advice;
Keep the questions regarding her womb to yourself, When you do find out a husband & wife are expecting just express your happiness when you hear the good news that they have a blessing on the way! I can guarantee you that those words will be welcomed.