So you wanna be a mid-life mom?

Published 8:00 am Friday, January 6, 2023

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I must admit, I’m quite impressed with the women featured in a recent article that proudly proclaim that, because they have frozen their eggs, they can “have a baby anytime I want!” and “I don’t need a man, just a donor bank,” as well as, “I’m 37 now and I plan to wait until I’m 40 before I have a baby!”


Listen, I get the career thing. Kids cost a LOT of money—perhaps even more than my horses—if you want to raise a child responsibly and give them every opportunity to succeed in life. And that means a big, fat savings account that is stuffed from having a big, fat career.

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So I don’t find these women, as would some, selfish, in the least. To me, it’s a bit insane to get married just because, in the words and foot-stomping of Marisa Tomei, “My biological clock is TICKING!” Why drag some hapless guy to the altar because one’s eggs are becoming poached?  


I just question these women’s timing, because I don’t think they’ve really thought it through. And they can’t really think it through because they have no idea of what lies around the corner for them…


Yes, it’s a lovely thought to have an adorable toddler as you approach mid-life, when feeling more prepared, more mature, and can afford to dress your little girl in a lilac, Lilly Pulitzer shift dress with a ruffle round her bottom. Adorbs. Not counting pennies as you take your now-5-year-old to the beach is the stuff dreams are made of. And then there’s the obligatory trip to Disney World– which today requires refinancing the mortgage to obtain a weekend pass… 


Perhaps it does actually run through their head that, yes, they will be in their 60s when their child is in that good college for which they saved so diligently, but 60 is the new 40, right? “Well,” they’ll say, “I’ll just stay fit and active so I won’t be a burden on my child when they’re just getting their foot on the career ladder and I trip over my ancient Chihuahua and break a hip.”


But wait a minute—they’ve jumped from their prime to their senior years and how they’ll plan for all that while omitting the biggest game changer of them all.


Menopause, baby.


To be honest, some women breeze right through it. I’ve had friends—I count them now as ex-friends—who dismiss the process with a wave of their manicured hand and say, “I didn’t have a single hot flash!” But the vast majority of women won’t be that lucky. And that includes women deciding to wait much later to have a baby. Ask yourself, you ambitious gal pals, do you really want to be dealing with a mouthy 15-year-old who is chockfull of their own hormones, when you’re having night sweats so voluminous that you have to change the sheets twice a night?


Have you thought about what it will be like bursting into uncontrollable tears while teaching your teen how to drive because you’re fighting over the air conditioning control in January? Or dealing with the eye-rolling and the under-the-breath mutterings of “You are SO stupid, you don’t know ANYTHING!” when insomnia has left you sleepless for a solid week? How about the constant worrying about who, exactly, they are texting nonstop? Not to mention being unable to keep up with every trendy, new social media app they use to keep their lives strictly off-limits to you? 


You long to have bonding mother-son talks, and affectionate mother-daughter talks, but who has the patience when you have to search for words in every other sentence? And not just then. All day long.


“It’s BUTTER, Mom!” They’ll fume, exasperated. “You’re looking for the BUTTER. How can you not know the name of BUTTER?” 


And during all of this, you will be finding yourself, each morning, staring incredulously at the bathroom scale, not understanding how, seemingly overnight, every ounce of fat on your body managed to migrate to your stomach. How is it possible to have put on 20 pounds when you’re eating no differently than you always have? Yes, OK, maybe now you have a ‘mummy tummy’—that telltale little roll over the top of your pants when you sit down—but when did this OTHER roll suddenly manifest? What the heck is that? Let’s not even talk about that really weird, single hair growing…


There’s gotta be something wrong with the bathroom mirror. This can’t be you.


If you still decide to “have a baby anytime I want!” good luck to you girls. Seriously—I hope it’s everything you hoped it would be.


For broads like me, nah. Life is stressful enough. Give me a giant bar of Cadbury’s Fruit and Nut chocolate and a dog sprawled over my lap. You’re right—I’ll never know the joy of helping my dog choose a prom dress or watching her earn that last scouting badge.


But then I’ll never have to worry about figuring out what the heck Webelong or Yubo is either…