It’s taken me a week to say those words out loud. I found out as early as I possibly could – my body works like clockwork. And as much as I was hoping it was being unpredictable, it wasn’t. I was pregnant, and a part of me knew that before I found out. I was pregnant and I had just signed on for the job I had waited my whole life for. I was pregnant 3 months before I needed to be to qualify for paid Maternity Leave. I was pregnant and I wasn’t ready. I am pregnant and I’m not ready.
I’m not ready to lose my body and my (two and a half year long) honeymoon. I’m not ready to stop being who I was and be defined by my family and my condition. Most of all, I’m not ready to let go of my career. I’m not ready to walk into my 1st day of work 4 months pregnant. I don’t want to be 6 months pregnant when I’m going for my training in Madrid. I didn’t expect to be pregnant, and I don’t know how to balance it all.
I’m also not ready – and don’t think I’ll try to be ready – to consider this the best thing to have ever happened to me. I’m glad I’m pregnant (whether at the right time or not) and it was definitely on the cards for me. But not because I expected a baby to complete my family or complete who I was. Not because I felt there was something missing in my life. Not even because I wanted a baby at all. No, I wanted to have a baby because it was part of my responsibility as an adult. I know a lot of people will counter that saying adults are NOT required to have babies, but for the world I live in, the life I lead, the people that love me, I did feel it was required and it was on the cards for me. Yes, I’ll enjoy it, I’ll be a good mother, I will put my babies first(ish), but I refuse to have it be the most important thing in my life, and I refuse to act as if it’s the best thing to have happened to me.
My job was better news for me this month than finding out I’m pregnant. My baby is a challenge that will make my career harder, not vice versa. I am more excited for my job than this baby. This does NOT mean I’m not excited for the baby, I am. I just reject the idea of acting like it’s 100% all about the baby otherwise you’re somehow not excited enough or not a good ‘mother’.
I’m a person before I’m anything else, and we’re all allowed to prioritise things the way we want. For me, it is most important that I be with my husband, happily married and together. It is important for me to have a fulfilling career. And it is then important (right now) for me to have a baby – in that order.
So… I’m happy (and shocked) I’m having a baby but I’m even happier (and more surprised) that I somehow managed to get a job!