While my husband and I were dating, we were often asked when we were going to “tie the knot.” And now that we’re married, we’re asked when we’re going to have children. Although we’ve both been excited for that chapter of our lives, we haven’t been ready to start it until recently. This is why my husband and I don’t have children yet.
We wanted to enjoy married life. We spent the year before our nuptials planning our wedding and honeymoon. So, once we were married, we simply wanted to enjoy our new life as husband and wife. We still did all the things we did when we were engaged – date nights in, date nights out, visiting family, vacationing, exploring around town – but it felt so much more magical once we were wed. We just wanted to live in the sparkle for a while.
We wanted to settle into our new house. We were also in the process of buying our first house in the months leading up to our wedding. We closed on the house three weeks before our big day and immediately went into renovation mode so we could host our rehearsal dinner there. After the wedding, there were more home updates we were eager to pursue. We were excited to take our time making our little starter home as cozy as possible.
I wanted to focus on my career. My husband and I relocated to Nashville, Tenn. about a month after he proposed. The full-time role I initially accepted in Nashville didn’t exactly scratch my itch for creativity. It was important to me that I feel fulfilled in my career before becoming pregnant. I gained a lot of professional experience in this role – which also helped me grow personally – and I spent time exploring more opportunities for me within the company.
We wanted to build up our savings account. Weddings are expensive and so are babies! The wedding and honeymoon had deflated our savings account a bit. We (or maybe just I) wanted to get it back to a number we were comfortable with before talking about getting pregnant. Plus, I’m a planner, and I love the idea of having a separate savings just for pregnancy expenses.
Without realizing it, we needed to work on ourselves. Some of our most explosive arguments came in the months following our wedding. In those moments, we both grew. We began realizing how much we each affected each other. We could boost the other’s confidence, or we could shatter it. We could treat the other with respect and dignity, or we could brush each other off. Our marriage became the most important thing to both of us, which quickly taught us a lot about love and life. I’m a completely different person today than the day I married my husband. And, I’m thankful we had the opportunity to go through this transition just the two of us.
We didn’t feel ready yet. Apart from everything I’ve mentioned thus far, we honestly didn’t feel ready for children. We’d always talked about having kids and what it would be like, but if we seriously asked ourselves if we were ready, we weren’t. We liked the lifestyle we were living, and we were still relishing in our new married life. And we didn’t feel bad about it.
We wanted to travel. It’s, of course, possible to travel once you’re a parent, but I know it becomes harder due to time, funds and simply wanting to be around your children. I was fortunate in that I travelled often in my childhood and early adulthood. My husband, however, didn’t have that opportunity. Once we weren’t spending our extra money on the wedding and honeymoon, we were excited to spend some money sightseeing together. From all-inclusive trips to small weekend getaways, I cherish every single married moment we travelled alone together.
I wanted to pursue one of my dreams. I’ve always loved to write, and it was a goal of mine to start a blog. After about a year of marriage, a lot of personal growth and feeling like I had finally “found my feet,” I started my blog, www.modwife.co. The blog was – and still is – a platform I use to encourage other women to their best selves so we have a positive impact on our families and communities.
I was still searching for what was missing in my career. Eventually, I realized it was time to seek other professional opportunities. I accepted what I thought was my dream at a prestigious public relations firm. I would virtually write and be creative eight hours a day, and I was on top of the world about that. I couldn’t wait to settle into my position, get to know my clients and coworkers and get the job done. After about a year or so in this position, I knew I would be ready to start talking pregnancy.
I left my “dream job.” Our dreams and goals change, and things aren’t always how they appear. Within a few months of being in my new PR position, I was stressed, anxious and overwhelmed. There was too much on my plate at work, and it just kept coming. My anxiety was at an all-time high, and I was not a happy person. After a few more months, my husband encouraged me to do whatever it was I needed to do. I resigned from my job and began seeking freelance work.
Our finances changed. I left my job with no other opportunities lined up, so we weren’t certain from where the money would come. We had less income than ever before, but it felt right. I was instantly so much happier, and the happiness was worth the stress of not having extra income. I soon landed my first client, and I’m still growing my client list.
Our plans were shot, but we’re ready to start a family now. Things certainly didn’t go as planned, and I don’t have all the boxes checked that I hoped I would before pregnancy. Cushioned savings account? It could use some work. Great income? I’m making less than before, but I’ll get there. But I’m happy with where I’m at and where we are together. We’re now mentally ready to start a family, although our situation is not at all what I thought it would be at this time. But in a way, maybe it’s better. I guess life is funny like that. It has a way of showing you what you do and don’t need.
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