I recently turned 40, which I haven’t said out loud yet, so that felt different. Anyway, I recently turned 40, and I have two young kids. Being from the South, I was told most people get married and start having kids in their 20s. I decided to move to New York City in my 20s and act like a crazy person for six years. Looking back, I’m very grateful to have survived those years financially and — considering I fell asleep on the subway and missed my stop (more than once!) — physically.
I moved to Texas shortly after getting married, unsure if I was going to have kids. I was pretty selfish and liked doing what I want. Eventually I decided starting a family was more important than my sleep. (Gosh, how I miss sleep!) I had my first baby at 35 and then another at 38.
Being an older parent has its disadvantages. For example, my age is screaming at me as I pick up my toddler and my knees creak. But there are also unique advantages that I love for us.
>> LISTEN :: The Age of Aging :: Momfessions Podcast :: Episode 59 <<
- We have wisdom from living life (just a bit) longer.
- We know better than to take unsolicited parenting advice from our parents, aunties, siblings, etc.
- We have had the time to do research — or not, if that’s not your thing! — about parenting and have made decisions accordingly.
- We are strong in our convictions when it comes to our children.
- We have better dad jokes.
- Having more life experiences means having more stories and knowledge to share with our kids.
- We are much more confident now, which makes us better role models and parents. I’m softer than I used to be, but I don’t really care as long as I’m happy and healthy. Modeling that to my kids, especially my daughter, is a real gift.
- Even though this may be hard to believe, we are are more patient with age.
- Being more emotionally mature means our family lives are more emotionally stable.
- We are more likely to be financially stable, as we are more established in our careers.
- Though not immune to criticism, we can better handle constructive feedback.
- We have gotten (the majority of) our craziness out of our systems — such as sleeping on the subway! No more sleepy subway rides.
- We may not have as much energy as our younger counterparts, but we are creative with our play time in order to conserve. My personal favorite is “hair salon.” Sitting while someone plays with my hair? Yes, please!
- We know not to sweat the small stuff. We have lived through some wild times and know how to take certain things with a grain of salt and a smile.
- We just really are bad@sses, and we know it!
>> RELATED READ :: You’re Allowed to be Exhausted with Older Kids <<
I’m glad I waited to have kids until later in life. Where are my “older” moms out there? Let me know what you love about being an older parent!