For All the Young Mothers

Most people who meet me for the first time are astounded that I have an almost-one-year-old.

“Wow… how old were you when you got pregnant?”

“23.”

Yup. I was 23 years old the day that I anxiously sat in the bathroom, watching as the little red plus sign slowly appeared on my pregnancy test. I knew my life would be different forever and I knew that all my plans would have to change. But I did not realize that God was blessing me beyond what I could have ever asked for. I was getting the most precious gift in the world: my little Joshua.

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Little did I know that God had carefully chosen when Joshua would be born. Had it been on my timing, it may not have been Joshua.

As a young mom & wife, it is not easy to hear people comment about how awfully young I am to be married and to have a child.

“Wow, you’re married?” Asks the manicurist who notices my wedding ring. “You look so young to be married. You don’t have kids right?”

A similar statement was also repeated to me by several moms at a therapy center I used to work at. And then again by a stranger at Target.

Believe it or not, I don’t enjoy those questions. And I am certain I would enjoy it even less if these types of statements were made in front of Joshua when he is old enough to understand.

Most people I know will reiterate the importance of waiting until you are older or have been married long enough to have children. I have heard, time and time again, how they couldn’t possibly be crazy enough to have a baby too soon after marriage. Most people don’t think about how this might sound to me or to my husband when dropping it casually in conversation.

While I totally agree with some married couples’ decision to wait and have kids when they are ready, I also wanted to write on behalf of us young moms.

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Believe it or not, there are some perks to being young parents. And for the sake of those of us that are younger, I’m going to write about them.

I’m not saying that parenting young is a good option for everyone and I’m certainly not supporting the idea of conceiving outside of marriage. What I would like to do, is to give some encouragement to the younger married folks with children who may feel the same hurts I do when constantly hearing why it’s “crazy” to have kids at our age.

For starters, I love that fact that I will only be 42 when Joshua goes off to college. Who knows how old I will be by the time we have no kids in the house anymore, but I’m guessing Nick and I will still be young enough to travel the world, devote ourselves to overseas missions, or do the types of things we “should have done” in our twenties.

Another thing that’s great is the crazy amount of energy we have for our little ones. I can’t imagine doing as much as I currently do ten years from now.

It may be because of the excessive amount of Gilmore Girls I’ve been watching on Netflix, but I love the idea of having a smaller age gap between myself and my son. I don’t even really think that means anything… I just hope Joshua and I can be great friends 🙂

Lastly, I realize that I actually have the rest of my life to focus on my career. I do not believe a young mother needs to forfeit her “dream job”. Whether she is a full-time mom forever or if she chooses to return to work once the kids are in school, that gives her multiple decades to devote herself to working outside of the home… She doesn’t need to start that in her mid-twenties.

But beyond it all… I am grateful I get more of my life with Joshua than I had originally planned. I am grateful that God has blessed me with extra time with him.

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