There Is Never a Perfect Time to Have a Baby

The minute I received my first-ever positive pregnancy test, which ultimately resulted in our 2-year-old daughter, a million emotions flitted through my head, among them: shock, joy, and disbelief, followed by a paralyzing fear. I think I was stuck on the toilet, not able to move, for some time (now that I have a toddler, I realize I should have been savoring that privacy in the restroom!).

Even though we had been actively trying for ten months, my first thoughts were, “Are we seriously ready for this?”

There-Is-No-Perfect-Time-to-Have-a-Baby
Image via Flickr/ Earls37a

The answer? Of course not! No one ever is.
Your household income doesn’t matter.
The amount of your upcoming raise doesn’t matter.
The fact that your puppy isn’t potty-trained yet doesn’t matter.
The fact that your extra bedroom is being used as storage, and what the heck are you going to do with all of that stuff when you need to set up the nursery?—doesn’t matter.
The number of child-rearing books that you haven’t read doesn’t matter.

In the end, it will all click. After all, you have 40 long weeks to freak out, cry, kick yourself into high gear, and have it all planned out by the time the baby arrives.

Or you won’t. Either way, it will all work out. Because, really, all the baby truly needs is a place to sleep, something to eat (whether created by you or not!), and lots of love (okay, and a car seat, that is the ONE thing you definitely have to have figured out by delivery day).

I learned all of this the hard way, when, at 38-weeks pregnant, I stood in the middle of one of those baby superstores, crying my eyes out when I realized I hadn’t yet bought a diaper pail. What was wrong with me!? Where were her dirty diapers going to go?! 

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Um, in the trash, or in a plastic bag that my husband can take outside each evening. Looking back, the diaper pail was just the trigger; I really wanted everything to be absolutely perfect for her arrival, otherwise, the fear would win out.

Those worries were just the top layer, too. Then, I moved on to wondering if my husband and I were ready to add an addition (even though that’s all we’d been thinking about for months). Had we had enough “couple time?” Did we have enough love? Were we mature enough?

The answer was ‘yes’ to all of these, of course; we had thought things through thoroughly, but it’s amazing how quickly you forget all of this when you find out there’s an actual human being growing inside of you. Common sense meltdown!

Bottom line: there is no perfect time to have a baby. You’re never really “ready.” You do what you can, and, honestly, your family, your love, your home, and your heart will gladly expand to make room.

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Until that second positive pregnancy test makes its appearance, and suddenly you’re sitting on the toilet thinking, “Are we seriously ready for this?” Only this time, you have a toddler tugging on your hand, asking you for a snack.

Round two!

What do you think?

There Is Never a Perfect Time to Have a Baby

Rachel is a stay-at-home-mom to her 4-year-old daughter, Sydney, and her 18-month-old son, Jackson. Her writing can be found all over the web, mostly detailing her own parenting struggles and triumphs, as well as her life as the military spouse of an active-duty airman. She also writes about her life as as a special needs parent on her blog, Tales From the Plastic Crib, and spends an unnecessary amount of time on Twitter. ... More

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