You thought you would be done having kids by 30, but, instead, you didn’t start until you were at least 35. Or fate stepped in and you found yourself with a baby again at 40, whether by surprise or fully planned.
No matter how it happened, you are an older mom (anyone who has a baby at age 35 or older). Not only are you old enough to have babysat the other moms in the PTA when they were in elementary school, but you fear the day that you’ll be mistaken as your child’s grandmother. And what bugs you most about the latter is the fact that some people you went to high school with are grandparents, so you know it isn’t an unreasonable assumption.
Being an older mom can be a challenge at times, especially during the baby years when your older body can’t deal with sleep deprivation as well as it could in your 20s. However, despite how hard it can be at times, there are at least 10 ways that being an older mom rocks.
It’s likely that you are much more relaxed now that you were younger. I’m not sure why that is, but I know I don’t worry about quite as much as I did when I was in my 20s. It could be because…
You Know You
At this stage in your life, you know who you are and who you aren’t. You are less likely to feel the need to compete with the neighbors. As an older mom, I don’t find myself in competition with other moms, nor do I really compare my kids to my friend’s kids. I know I’m doing the best I can. If someone can’t handle that, then that is on them.
In my 20s, I lived paycheck to paycheck. There were some months were I prayed I had enough money to cover the bills. While my family does struggle now and again, we feel much more financially stable now than twenty years ago. Part of the reason is my husband chose a career and employer who offer job security. The other is the knowledge that we will manage even when times get tough. We did before when we were younger, after all. Most older parents are in the same place. They have financial stability that many people in their 20s do not have yet.
Not Missing Out
As an older parent, you worry less about missing out on opportunities to go out and party with friends. In fact, you’d rather stay home anyway. If you do want to go out, you have the resources to get a babysitter and enjoy the evening with your spouse. It’s likely that you won’t stay out too late anyway, after all, you share the….
Same Bedtime as Your Kids
Yep, I said it. By the time you hit middle age, it’s likely that you will be eager to get to bed. Your kids will wear you out and going to bed soon after they do seems like a reasonable option. Don’t be ashamed or embarrassed. You earned that time to sleep.
When I see that someone my age has just become a grandparent (and after I have a mini-heart attack learning that news), I struggle to understand how that is possible. I just don’t feel old enough to be a grandmother. I know that’s denial. However, keeping up with little ones does keep you young. It’s a fact.
More Wisdom to Share
As an older mom, you have more life experiences than a younger one (well, ideally). You’ve made mistakes and learned from them (one hopes). Your children will benefit from this knowledge as they grow older, whether through your choices as a parent or the information you convey to them.
You Are The Coolest
Well, you are as cool as Sandra Bullock, Julia Roberts, Halle Berry, Naomi Watts, and Gwen Stefani. They are all part of the older mom club!
Odds are that you will go through menopause around the same time that your child (or children) start going through puberty. I’m sure that will make things a lot of fun at home. Younger parents should be jealous.
More Embarrassing Opportunities
At this stage in life, we know what embarrasses kids. And, funny enough, we don’t care if it does embarrass them. Once your kids reach the stage when they turn red just because you breathed in front of their friends, you will have more opportunities to give your kids a real reason to be embarrassed. Being as old as their friends’ grandparents will make it even easier to embarrass them.
Am I alone thinking that being an older mom rocks? Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments what you think.