This is a question I get asked a lot. Like a lotta lot. And the real answer is, it’s never the right time.
I don’t know how old you folks all are, but I’m twenty-seven and D is thirty. That means we are nicely in that age bracket where the big grown up scary things seem to be happening all at once. To every single one of your friends. People are getting engaged, married, buying houses and holy mother of god HAVING BABIES. And now, when a shiny ring or blurry scan photo pops up on your Facebook timeline it’s not even odd. It’s just like ‘oh yeah, awesome, congrats guys.’ But I still don’t feel grown up enough for my friends to be doing these things, let alone be a mother myself. In my head I’m still twenty-one, spending way too much money on Wetherspoons cocktails, and doing odd things in the name of art (I studied art for two years before kiboshing that idea).
I still do the odd, odd thing in the name of art (well, Instagram) but this isn’t a story about that. It’s a story about D and I and how we decided it was time to put our genitalia to good use.
D and I had been together for just over a year before we moved in together. We then shacked up in a v.trendy city centre pad that overlooked Manchester’s gay village. Like I said, v.trendy. We spent two years eating burgers and drinking cocktails at every new place the city had to offer, staying out too late on work nights, and hiding from our neighbours when taking the out recycling due to the amount of wine bottles we were binning. We then decided to move out the country. It seemed like a totally idyllic move. Only twenty minutes from the city centre we could have access to loads of countryside walks and still be close for shopping, nights out etc. Our combined rent, commuting costs, and bills were less than the cost of our city centre flat. Plus we wanted a garden.
Well it was a pretty ridiculous move. We were in the middle of the most beautiful countryside, gorgeous little village, cute little parks, the lot. We loved it. But from a practical point of view, it was miles away from fucking anything. Piss poor supermarkets, a long and crowded commute, and no friends or family anywhere near us.
Then D changed jobs, and was travelling the complete opposite direction to me, on an even longer and more crowded commute. And he hated it. The job, the train, his manager, being out of the house for twelve hours a day. The lot.
So what did we do.
WE GOT PREGNANT.
*Round of applause for some really great timing*
This makes it all sound like R was an oopsie-daisy baby. When he wasn’t. See in the middle of all the what-the-hell-are-we-doing-ness, we decided we were going to try and start a family. We had been together for almost five years, and were talking about what we wanted to do next. This was probably to take our minds off D’s job, because by this point he was very very unhappy with it. I worried a lot about him.
Anyway, we were talking and we knew we wanted a family, a house, and a dog running round. Problem is, because the job situation was uncertain, and I was still paying off my masters we weren’t in a ‘buy a house right now’ situation. ( Still aren’t LOL ) We didn’t even know where we wanted to live, or would be living soon. But we knew we loved each other, we knew we wanted a family, and I really really wanted to be a mum, so we decided not to wait. If we waited till we had it all figured out then we could be waiting three years, five years, or longer.
So on New Years Day 2017 we decided that this was the year we were going to try for a baby, and by the end of January, R was in utero, and I was staring at a pissed on stick in surprise. Turns out we don’t mess around when it comes to making babies.
And I’m so so happy we didn’t wait. Fast forward to the current day – D is working back in Manchester in a job that he loves, and is doing really well at. We might still be renting but we have moved into the suburbs, closer to his family, back where D grew up so we see his friends a lot more often as well.
Little R is here, bringing joy, happiness and many many sleepless nights. Life might have thrown us a few curveballs this year, everything isn’t all plain sailing but I am happy our little blonde buddy is here for the ride. He’s going to come along with us as we figure things out. Being a family changes your priorities, makes you look at things a different way, and the way I see it – we have more time with him. We can do more together, take him to loads of places, and he might remember moving into the first home we buy – how awesome will that be?
So back to my original question, when people ask how do you know it’s the right time? You don’t. Having a baby is a massively life-changing event. Whatever stage of your life you are at. For us we were fortunate that it was so easy to conceive, but for many couples just getting to the two lines on a stick stage is a massive achievement. And sadly, some amazing people who would make the best parents will never get a chance to do that.
It’s never going to be the right time. You could always have more money, a better job, a better maternity package, a new house… the list goes on. But you will never have more time then you do right now. So spend it with the people you love.* **
*and if that means going and getting astride your significant other then go do it, I’m not responsible for any baby booms on my Facebook news feed in a months time.
** also for those of you who never want to have children – that’s awesome, you do you. Now go hop atop your significant other anyway. Tell them Becqui sent you. (Please don’t that would be weird).
with love, B xo