Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Birth-year buddies, I'm looking at you

Sometimes I think there must have been a drop in births the year I was born.

Kids were on leashes way back in 1977. For reals.

When you don't get married young (at least by Catholic/Christian standards, i.e. in, or just out of, college), and then it takes you five-and-a-half years to become a mother, you find that everyone around you is younger than you. 

Like, way younger.

People are usually shocked when they discover how old I am. Which, on one hand, is a good thing, I guess. At least I don't look over the hill. But it's also clear from their reaction (jaws dropping to the floor) that they think I am really, really old.

I'm so old my parents had to take a picture of the TV when I was on (middle, front)

And the weirdest part - no one is EVER the same age.

My theory is this: My peers are, generally, moms to much older children. If they do have young ones like me, they also have a few older kids too, which means they're too seasoned, or too busy with the older kids, to do all those newer mom things that newer moms do. So they run in different circles. Don't attend Moms Group anymore. Are busy picking their kids up from school. Hang with the parents of kids their kids' ages. 

But that's just my theory. It could be that no one was actually born the same year as me.

The dress. The hair. The eyebrows. Someone out there must remember the 90's.

When I need a reminder that there are, in fact, people born in 1977, I look at this list and revel in all the beautiful, youthful stars who aren't 24, 29 or 32, like everyone else I know. They're 37 like me! They do exist! (Okay, I don't really look at that list, but Ryan and I are always playing the age game with whomever we're watching on TV and we're obnoxiously happy when someone is our age or older).

One year later, out with the puffy sleeves and in with the hooker dress. The '90's were funny like that.

I'm not complaining. Really, I'm not. Everyone you know being younger than you is a small price to pay for finally becoming a mother after all those years wondering if it would ever happen. It's just that they're all so fertile. And pregnant. And yes, I may be keeping up with my three kids. But their three kids is just the beginning, because they have so many, many, many, many years of fertileness left. 

I, on the other hand, am nearing the close of my fertile window. A window that only cracked open twice in my whole life. A window that, just as I was starting to get accustomed to breathing in the fresh air, is about to be closed forever. I could go on with this analogy all night, but I'll spare you.

Seriously, though. I am not just of advanced maternal age, but have been for a couple years now. Menopause is on the horizon. 

Don't get me wrong, I have a ton in common with all those younger girls. My closest friends are younger girls. And, truly, age is just a number once you're an adult. But I still would like to bump into someone born the same year as I was.

So where my 1977 peeps at? 

(Yes, I really just said "peeps." Remember, my teenage years were spent in the '90s). 

I'll take 76'ers too. I live with one, and would have been one myself if not for two days. So hit me up.

51 comments:

  1. Not exactly... born in 1/1978. But it's funny because I'm kind of in the opposite boat... all of our friends are a little bit older than us. They waited until later in life to have kids, like mid 30's, and we had kids at the same time as them but we were 28-ish. They had 2 kids quickly back to back and were "done" while we've had 3, more spread out. So by the time our youngest was born, everyone was like "I'm so glad I"m past that." :( It's kind of a bummer, this whole season of lots of new little babies was started and over in like 6 years. :( I kind of thought we'd have more time, if not us specifically at least as a group. Sorry for the ramble, but I do know what you mean!

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    1. '78 is close enough! :) And that's interesting about your friends. I always wondered if I was friends with women who had careers first and had babies later, if they'd be my age. But I think most of the women I know had babies right away. Or, at the very least, they got married so young that even if they waited a few years, they were still in their 20's.

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  2. Ha, ha...another 77' peep here. August of 1977 to be precise. And my husband is a whopping 72' er, talk about old. Just kidding!! I think he is super young at heart. It actually doesn't bother me very much because honestly most of my friends that have young children and who we hang out with are within 1-2 years of me, some older and I love it! Maybe it is a geographical thing? And yes, I know about young parents, my parents were 18 and 19 when I was born and my mom had all 4 of us by the time she was 25. I actually got a lot of stares in high school when I was 17 and graduating and people found out my mom was only 36 (the same age I am now). I can't even imagine having a 17 year-old right now. I had Elizabeth at 34 and God-willing I will be 37 when this one is born. I am just so grateful that I had Elizabeth at all (and I know you are very grateful for your 3 awesome darlings), that I guess I don't think about this kind of stuff. And I think about St. Therese, her parents were in their 40s I believe when she was born. But I could resist your call to all your '77 peeps! :) I think there are actually a few of us bloggers that are mid to late 70s, you might be surprised.

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    1. Well, I think you know who that is, but if not, I was signed in under our other account.

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    2. I knew! :) It's funny because my mom was 25 when she had me (her first) and I grew up thinking that was SO OLD and that no way was I going to be THAT old when I had my first baby. Ha! And I'm so, so, so grateful to be a mom at all. It's not even about being an older mom.. it's more about how odd it is that there's never ever anyone our ages (Ryan and I both). It's like the missing year, at least where I live :)

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  3. Okay, so I wasn't born in 1977, but had to chuckle just a little at your post. You think you are an old mom, and I can totally relate to that. I'm almost 44 and my kids are 5, 8 & 8 1/2. So I completely understand about other moms being younger than you. Heck, my youngest's bio grandma is close to me in age and is actually younger than my hubby. Thankfully I do have one good friend relatively close to my age whose kiddos range from 9 years old to 2 1/2 months old. I keep saying that having young kids keeps me young....until I look in the mirror and wonder if it's aging me. :)

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  4. I can so relate - I was thirty eight when our first son came home - forty two when the youngest of three came and forty three when the middle son arrived. All of my children's friends parents were young enough to be my children and I was old enough to be my children's grandmother! I was only asked once, though, thankfully, if I was the youngest two's grandmother. My husband - poor man - is 13 years older than me - he was always mistaken for their grandfather...and he could have almost been their great-grandfather.

    It made for a weird play grouping ... fortunately, I have met some people my own age now as our sons are grown - and boy is it nice to have "peeps" to relate to!

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  5. Most of the moms I know are older than me, even the ones I know through church - they do have kids my kid's age, but also several older usually. It seems that most moms my age aren't involved in church activities. I'm sorry you feel alone. I know I have a hard time relating to the older moms because of my lack of experience and because they tend to be much more financially stable. Because of my miscarriages, I can kind of glimpse how you feel about fertility.

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    1. Mandi, you just got me thinking.. I really am in the same place in life as these other, younger, women. Financially speaking, too (at least as far as one can tell). So maybe it really is a blessing. I just wish they weren't so shocked when they find out my age, haha :)

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  6. A little funny - one day, while I was with our three sons - the youngest was probably about eight or so - and their biological grandmother - we went to the beach. We were talking with another person who we did not know at all. I said I was going to be fifty or was fifty and one of the boys called me Mom ... then turned and called her Grandma - the poor woman who we were talking with got a real confused look on her face - and finally said "My goodness, your mother looks great for her age!"

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    1. Ha! I love it. You know, that is the best part of this - I should be glad when people don't think I look my age. It's when they're not surprised that we should worry! ;)

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  7. Interesting, I was born in 9/79 myself. I was feeling like you until I joined our local Catholic homeschool group. It is so refreshing to be with women my age, maybe older, a few younger with the same focus. (just an idea, if you haven't done so already.)

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  8. Sorry, can't help you… I've got ten year on you ('67) and now I really feel old. Thanks a lot!!! ha ha, jk, I felt old before this post. :)

    But I do love those prom photos!

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    1. Haha, Leila! You have a kid my kid's age! But I bet you'd be all busy planning weddings and stuff to hang out. Just kidding :) I'd force you to if we lived nearby!

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  9. I was born in '77! I feel the same as you. I'm in a moms group and they are all a lot younger than I am. But our kids are all the same ages. I love that group though. I forget about the age difference until it comes up randomly! And yes, they are usually shocked!

    Our friends we have that are our age all have older kids and we see a lot less of them lately because they are involved in older kid activities.

    I think I felt the most old when I was pregnant. Obviously I was ecstatic to have this miracle but I was pretty miserable the whole time.

    I have pictures that look just like yours!!! Lol!

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  10. August 8, 1977! A couple of things...1 - I think I might have had that same puffy sleeve dress, or at least one that was very similar and the same metallic blue color; 2 - My daughter has a shirt that says "Chillin' with my Peeps" on it, I'm not sure if it has survived since the 90's or where it came from; 3 - I also got married "late", I was 29 and my husband was 34; 4 - we also struggled with fertility and have a 3 year-old and a 2 1/2 month old; 5 - Yes, I am a blog stalker but from the sounds of it, I should introduce myself because we have a lot in common! I'm Stacy. I'm friends with Wheelbarrow Rider (do you know her or was it a link from other blogs she sent me that brought me here???). Either way, you have inspired and encouraged me and I love hearing how you and your family are doing through your blog!

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    1. Hey Stacy! Yes, I know Wheelbarrow Rider. Thanks for introducing yourself :) And yay for being born in '77!

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  11. I'm a 1975 baby and pregnant with my first. On top of that, my dad was 46 when I was born so I have a parent that is becoming a grandparent again at 84. I feel absolutely no connection to women I've met that are also pregnant with their first. I'm dealing with aging parents moving out of childhood homes and long past discussions about student loans!

    On the other hand, I feel incredibly blessed. I just wish I had at one friend who was in a similar place. I'd probably find that friend if I started a blog. :)

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  12. I'm a '78er, and I can't believe how many people in their twenties already have several children and/or are done having children. My sister's (non-Catholic) best friend has four kids and a tubal ligation. She's 28. She thinks *she's* too old to have more kids?!? I am hoping that the "fertile window opens up" for us again. But I'm feeling pretty old with my 3-month-old twins keeping me up all night.

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  13. I was born in 1974. I feel sort of lost too. Everyone I went to Law School sort of skipped the kids thing, so its strange to see them making partner and possibly having 1 kid at age 38. Then the Moms that I hang out with for my 11 year old's activities think it's totally bizarre that I still have a 3 year old and 1 year old running around the gym bleachers at basketball games. For me, the weirdest moment is when I take my kids to the Catholic School Mass at 8:30 AM at our parish. 600 kids ages k to 8th grade and they treat my 1 year old like a lost unicorn-"Wow, you are holding a baby in the Communion Line! She's so rare and precious!" Seriously? No one has younger cousins anymore by the 3rd grade? It's weird. I just sort of make peace with my outsider status.

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  14. I'm a '75 baby and it seems like many of my peers have little kids, we're the odd people out (Mr JB is a '70 baby!). I'm blessed to look younger than I am, and I definitely don't act old (so I'm told). It also helps that I hang out with 7 year olds most of the time. Since I am of advanced maternal age and will probably never have my own bio kids, I think that's why we're open to adopting older kids. My BFF is the same age as me and she has a 10, 7 and almost 4 year old. I figure God wants me to spend my 40s being a mom and that my 30s were for healing my body....

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    1. You could pass for much younger, JB! I didn't realize you were open to adopting older kids. That's awesome!

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    2. Our max age is 7, but we'd consider older for a sibling group. There's a lot of need out there since older kids are harder to place. God help us!

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    3. Oh my gosh, there is SO much need out there. You would really, truly be changing a child's life. And sibling group! Ahh! So incredibly exciting!!!!

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    4. We've waited almost ten years to be parents, why not??

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    5. That's so awesome JB! Are y'all HS ready right now? If I eat about situations here on the states want me to send them to you?

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  15. I am even older than you! I have a twin, and we wore matching (although different colors) PLAID taffeta puff sleeve princess style dresses to our high school dance! I was born in 1973, and I didn't have my first child until I was 36, I am now pregnant with my third at 41 and by far, the most common reaction I get from friends when I share the news is "really?!? but you're OLD!" some of them even share statistics on Down's syndrome and I have to kindly remind them that I went to medical school. We trusted God when deciding on being open to growing our family, not the "statistics."
    I have the same thoughts in the cry room at Mass. I know we're older than just about all of the parents there. i also had the same thoughts bouncing in my head when trying for this third pregnancy which took awhile-I am keenly aware of the closing fertility door, and it invokes powerful, unfamiliar feelings about change, aging, and permanence. But to me, you are a baby at 37 and I think you've got a few more years of fertility left!
    I try not to think about the numbers. What we have in common with the other young moms is that we're at similar places in life with young families and all the challenges that go with it. That's where we connect and start our friendship. Hang in there!

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    1. Oh my goodness. Plaid? That is amazing. And I hopefully will have a few possible fertile years left. I once read how women with PCOS can see their fertility rise as they get older, and their eggs actually become better. Even though I was barely PCOS, I'm still clinging to the idea that that's what is going on for me.

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  16. '76 here. :) Most of my friends with kids the same age are younger but seem mature and we have a lot in common. too bad we don't live closer, we could commiserate!

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    1. Yes, all my younger friends are very mature, you'd never know there was an age difference! And I wish we lived closer too! So when I said I graduated college in the 90's, you couldn't say you were in second grade at the time ;)

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  18. If you want to feel like the young kid, hang out with me... I am a 72'r! And I have three babies near your babies ages-- 3 and a few months, 2.5 years, and a sweet 6 month old. I have very few mama friends w/babies as young as mine. But I'll take it...

    All seriousness, it's super sad for me... I think my youngest may be our last... I am 41 and we don't have the means to adopt a fourth time right now. I sense that since adoption is my path to mommyhood, this may be it which is a super bummer... :(

    (Oh but there's fost/adopt and international adoption of older children if my husband could join my enthusiasm!)

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    1. Oh, and I was mistaken twice in a week as my babies grandmother... I thought I was looking good those days too :)

      I actually think it's because all three of my babies are close in age and different races from one and other (and me) so it boggles minds.

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    2. Oh don't you hate that when it's a day you feel good about yourself?? I bet you're right about the races. They're just confused. And I'm making a mental note that assuming a woman is a child's grandmother is the same as assuming a woman is pregnant. You just don't do it! :)

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  19. Oh my gosh, K, those pictures! Hilarious…love it! It's so weird, but I never even think of you as older than me…we're the same age, right?! ;)

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  20. Hi there, from Portugal (yeap, you're followed that far)! Born Jan79! Having suffered from infertility as well for 6 years, we now have 2 daughters aged 4y and 10m.
    I feel exactly the same. Would love to be a younger mother, with plenty of time ahead to have more children... (and a little more energy!).
    But differently from you it happens that I live in a country (and a continent, actually) that is ageing faster and faster and where there is a terryfing lack of babies. That's why, even in the middle of 30s we are one of the youngest parents in our eldest daughter's school (that's a catholic school) - how sad is that?
    Love your blog!

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    1. I was waiting for you! When I think NO ONE is my age, I remember you are :) :)

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  23. I was born in 77 as well. I know my class at school was a small one, so I'm sure there weren't a ton of babies born around that time.

    I was 27 when I got married and while it didn't take long to get pregnant and have our first baby, once he arrived I was kind of in a strange place where most of my friends weren't married yet, so I couldn't really relate to them anymore (we still talked, and they were great, but I was still missing something.) Now I'm a mother of five and living far away from those friends, so we've found new ones. I am the old lady, by far, some of my friends were born in the late 80s, what? I think one friend may have been born in 92. (I was in high school, she could be my daughter, really.)

    Thankfully, I don't feel old, nor do I look 36 (at least I don't think I do). I do know that menopause is around the corner and discussed it with my mom when I was visiting in January. My gma had her last baby at 42, so I'm thinking there are 5-6 more years of baby time, but it's strange to think this time of our lives will be ending.

    Also, next year, 20th High School Reunion. I remember my mother going to hers and it seems like it was yesterday.

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  24. 1977 here baby!!! And older than ALL my other mom friends.

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  25. Ok so I'm a 1980 baby but grant is 1971 and 99% of my friends with kids are 25? And they have 2-4-5 kids a piece. We marry younger down here, as evidence of my getting married at 18 so the Catholics start having those babies young and just keep'em coming. It used to feel really weird and still does but only when I stop and think about it.

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  26. You're young! I was born in 1974! My. 40th bday will come soon enough in Nov and my son won't even be 1! In this part of the country, I'm surrounded by older moms of young children. Age is just a number!:)

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  27. I was a 76er. My kids are 3 and 6. I too feel old most of the time. Thank goodness my bestie had her kids olderish too.

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  28. I am a 1978-er. I live two hours of NYC, so we are still considered the 'metro' area b/c everyone commutes here down to the city. I am going to be 36; my oldest is 7, then I have a 3 year old and an under one year old (one in heaven). I am one of the youngest moms I know-many of my mom friends are older and indeed, many are 40 or just over/under it. I think here it is way more common to marry 'older' (late 20s/early 30s) and having your first is common in your early/mid 30s. Many of the mothers I know are 'done' by now, and I feel sad b/c my baby is always the extra special person in the room and every other mom always wants to hold her!

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  29. Late '76 here--and yeah...I share your thoughts about AMA. We were babies when we got married at 22 and when people hear we've been married for 15 years, I think they guess me as older than 37. LOL! My wrinkles must give it away! Funnily enough, I've even had a some symptoms lately which I mentioned to my doc thinking it might be menopause. But you know what? He looked at me straight in the eye and was like, "please...it's not menopause...you're not THAT old". Heh. My mom had a hysterectomy at 41 and my older sisters are still cycling so I don't have a good indicator of when to expect it based on family history.

    Oddly, as the years wear on (and no longer chart-obsessing each month) there is a certain freedom in just accepting this twilight of my fertile years. I am finding it far more peaceful and less dramatic than I thought I would. I'm not sad about my waning fertile status but perhaps just indifferent. It feels good honestly. I have the benefit of looking back over how God has written our story and I have zero complaints. I really mean that. I'm sure I will always grieve being unable to birth a child from my body to some extent but thanks be to God, it's not the cross it once was.

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  30. Priceless photos!!!! My hubby is your yer group and I'm not tht far behind. :)

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  31. Well, got a few years on you (1973), but can so relate with what you are saying! I have an almost one and almost two year old. Many of our friends near our age have kids graduating already! Oh my! I always remind myself that my life is God's plan and timing. Then I take a deep breath and get back to chasing toddlers!

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  32. I'm a '77! My kids are 10, 8, and 3.5. All girls. And I love your blog. :-)

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  33. I'm way late on this because I'm just now getting a chance to catch up on blog reading, but I had to come represent for 1977! That's cool that we were born the same year.

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