I had a Skype catch up last week with two very old friends, both of whom are now pregnant, one who is ready to pop! It was lovely to see them both, and fascinating to see them at such different stages of a huge part of their lives. Both are expecting their first child, one is at 38 weeks, the other at 16. The difference in their progression was of course obvious, however it was their completely alternate attitudes that I noticed the most. Ms 38 weeks is enormously organised (as you’d want to be with 2 weeks to go!), and has been so for the entire pregnancy. She has a fantastic attitude of order, with a dose of reality. She eats extremely well, exercises carefully, and has had a great pregnancy despite developing gestational diabetes, which she has handled with aplomb. Ms 16, on the other hand, seems the opposite. She has had a rough ride of morning sickness, and seems quite blasé about what’s happening to her. While she had planned the pregnancy, her circumstances are chaotic – a new relationship, a pending move to be with the father in an as-yet-unbuilt house, and an aversion to wanting to buy anything for the baby, as she’ll “do all that later”.
Now, I know I’m sounding very judge-y here, and I really don’t mean to. I’m just fascinated by the different approaches people have to having kids. I must admit, my own perspective is skewed by my desire for children, and as I’ve mentioned before, I’ve already completely overanalysed the entire future pregnancy before it’s even happened. Perhaps I have something to learn from 16, perhaps her easygoing approach in pregnancy will translate to easygoing parenting.
Back to me though (c’mon, blogs are inherently narcissistic, and chances are I’m only talking to myself…). It was a lot harder than I imagined to talk to two people who are going through what I want so badly. These are two friends with whom I always feel comfortable, who I know I can be myself around. And yet I found myself plastering a smile on as they joked about me being next, and asked why I wasn’t pregnant yet. Thankfully I wasn’t in the process of trying, or trying to deal with another month gone by without conception, or I don’t think any fake smile in the world could have masked my emotions. I finished the phone call quite melancholy, which is ridiculous. Namely because we’re not trying yet, I’m not dealing with failed attempts at conception, and I’m genuinely happy for my friends! No matter my logic, it was a hard catch up. I can only hope that in 6 months’ time I’ll be the one glowing with pride.