To The Newlywed Who Is Afraid To Have A Baby

(From our maternity session with Clarice, our fourth baby.)

To The Newlywed Who Is Afraid To Have A Baby,

First, I'd like to say that being afraid to have a baby is more common than you might think.  This fear has been a recurring theme around me in the last several months.  There are many among my friends and acquaintances that I know have thought deeply about this, but I don’t want that fear to grow to an unreasonable level for them or you.  So I thought it was time to sit down and share some thoughts from a mother who can really no longer call herself “new”.

Though the wording will vary from person to person, I think the two biggest pieces of the fear of becoming a mother are fear of change and fear of pain.  This post covered most of these fears of having a baby pretty fully.  I cannot argue with a single thing on that list.  Babies do change a lot about your life.  But the thing that most newlyweds miss when contemplating these baby-changes is that a baby doesn’t just change your life; a baby changes you.

You, the person who is sitting on the edge, not ready to jump into motherhood for fear of all the change - that person is not the same person who will be holding that new child.  The process of trying for a baby, waiting for baby, bringing your baby home; it all changes you deeply.  

I am learning that this doesn’t just stop with babyhood.  When your babies are toddlers, you will have fears for the school years.  When your child is in elementary school, you will worry about the teenage years.  But when you reach each of these milestones, you realize that the experiences leading up to these events prepares you in ways that sitting and thinking about it never could.  

Somehow by God’s perfect design, the process makes you ready.  

I can’t tell you that your journey to or through motherhood will be pain-free.  I can’t assure you that your babies will always be fine, or that you will even have them.  I can almost guarantee you that there will be some heartache along the way.  But anything worth doing involves some risk of pain.  What I can do is encourage you to turn to God through the journey.  Sometimes the joy will be blindingly bright, and sometimes you will have to ask Him to help you see it through the darkness, but He can use even the painful parts to do wonderful things when you trust your life to Him.

I can’t talk you out of all your fears, and I don’t think even you can talk yourself out of all your fears, so I am not going to try.  I am just going to tell you to not let yourself be afraid.  You can’t imagine your life with a baby right now, but if that blessing of a child reaches your arms, you won’t be able to imagine your life without them.  The process will have grown you, and all those things that used to scare you won’t seem as important anymore.

Motherhood is the most beautiful and real thing I have ever done, or ever will do, with my life; and the same is true for you.  You will have more impact on these little people than you could have on anyone else.  This is a legacy.  Children are where the greatest work starts, and when you look at having a baby with that view it becomes more exciting than terrifying.

The only way to overcome your fears?  Get your ducks as much in a row as you are able, then take the leap.  I’ll be here quietly laughing as you fret, but only because I am on the other side, and I see the joy that awaits you.

-A Not-So-New Mom Of Four

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Raven said...

Love the line 'a baby doesn't just change your life, but changes you.' So great and so worth it. :)

Susannah said...

I definitely am glad we waited a bit to have a kiddo but, let me tell you, Caleb is absolutely the best things ever!

Callie Nicole said...

It is nice to have some time to yourself as newlyweds, but starting a family doesn't have to be scary either! Kids are so special and fun!

Callie Nicole said...

So true! They are worth everything. :-)

Jenny @ Unremarkable Files said...

We're having #6 in just a few months and I agree with everything you said! Having a baby isn't just a change to your lifestyle, it's creating a fantastic new life - just like getting married is! You can never really be ready, but if you have the desire to love a child and do your best then that's probably the most ready you can get.

Deborah Will said...

We had to wait not willingly because of miscarriages. It is the most beautiful thing. It does change you, and now that they are grown and we have grandbabies it's as beautiful and fun and I love every moment. I, too was afraid of childbirth but it was worth the pain.

Callie Nicole said...

It is definitely worth the pain! Thank you for commenting and sharing how the waiting could still be beautiful,e ben though it must have been so difficult too.

Callie Nicole said...

I totally agree! And wow, #6 - congrats! How exciting!

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