11 March 2013, by Violet Lim
I met my hubby Jamie when I was 20 years old. We were both studying at University of Manchester. He was an Accounting and Finance student and I was reading Law. He was actually a year my senior. And honestly, I was not really his ‘type’. That is another story altogether. Long story cut short, we got along really well, and we starting dating. We had a long distance relationship (LDR) for 2.5 years after being physically together for less than 3 months. I am not a big fan of LDR as I have had two-failed LDR in the past. Well, when you meet the right person, things will just fall into place. Don’t get me wrong. It sure was not easy. We had our fair share of quarrels and arguments. In those days, there wasn’t Skype and the likes. So boy, did we chalk up our phone bills!
Having my Law degree and Master’s degree under my belt, I came back to Asia and started work in a bank as a management associate. We got engaged 1.5 years after, and 1.5 years later, we tied the knot. When we got married, I was 25 years old, and Jamie was 29 years old. For current standards, we are considered to have married at a young age.
5 months after our wedding, I had a missed period and after a pregnancy home-kit, I found out that I am pregnant! For us, it was a planned pregnancy as we could not wait to start our own family.
Most people would have waited a few more years to have a baby. Honestly, why not? The thoughts that would go through one’s mind would be – it is better to enjoy life a little more before the kids invade our lives for the next 20 years. Or better to do more travelling as it is going to be so difficult to travel with kids in toll. Or simply, I am not ready to be a parent.
Many friends have asked me, “How did you know that you are ready to have kids?” I will be lying to you if I were to tell you at age 25, I was completely ready to be a mother. Of course, I had my doubts. Of course, I had my worries. What if I am a bad mother? What if I do not know how to look after a fragile little baby? What if I feel resentful towards the baby for taking my freedom away?
However, I think we will never be really ready for something unless we have experience in doing it. For example, we might think that something is really difficult based on others’ experience, but who knows? Maybe for you, you will find it as easy as how a fish takes to water!
Honestly, with today’s high stress level, the food we eat plus the lack of time, it is not a matter of… “You want, you will get” i.e. you plan to conceive, it would immediately happen. I know of people who have been trying for years, but still have not been able to conceive. And they started trying in their late 20s.
Hence, my personal advice to the question, “How do I know if I am ready?” is “You can never be too ready. Look at it this way, once you know that baby is on the way, you have at least 9 months to get ready for him or her!”
And for us, the positive pregnancy test was the start to our amazing journey of parenthood that we are enjoying and learning from everyday! 🙂