real life

KELLY MCCARREN: 'At 32, I thought by the end of the year I'd want kids. Now everything has changed.'


I muddled my way through my twenties.

I wasn’t one of those super successful humans who knew what their dream job was and started leaping their way up the corporate ladder, barely out of a degree they DEFINITELY didn’t just wing with an aloof attitude.

I wasn’t ticking anything off a bucket list, travelling to a bunch of cool destinations and making friends all over the world.

I wasn’t going to the sickest parties, having a bender every weekend without a care in the world.

I wasn’t even buying a property with my partner and settling down to have a baby at 27, despite my plans as a wide-eyed 20-year-old.

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Instead, I jumped from career to career, never quite finding my feet. I also jumped from boyfriend to boyfriend, never alone and travelling to wherever they wanted to go on holidays. I was shy, I had no confidence, I got monstrous hangovers (which put me off partying a lot), I lived paycheck to paycheck, and I made APPALLING fashion choices.

Now at 31 (32 later in the year), I feel like I’ve finally hit my stride in life. I’m doing work I love and am good at.

I’m earning money and have travelled more over the past three years than in my entire life. I’m comfortable with who I am and I’m finally at a stage where I can easily go to a party by myself and not feel paralysed by fear at introducing myself and making friends.


I’m confident, a ball of fun, my hangovers are manageable, and I finally know how to dress for my shape (most of the time).

I’m having more fun than I’ve had my entire life, yet I live in a constant state of anxiety about my ticking biological clock. Given how many of my girlfriends have faced fertility issues, it’s something that is constantly on my mind because I worry that I’ll FINALLY be ‘ready’ one day and it will be a struggle.

I’m not even on the fence about actually having a child one day, I know that I 100 per cent want to be a mum. Just not right now because I’m having too much fun!

Many of my friends now have children and despite their best efforts to trick me into wanting to join them, I see what my life will be like. Yes, a baby is the best thing to happen to them and I can see the joy, but I can also see how much their lives have changed, and I’m just not ready for that.

I’m not ready for the responsibility of growing a human, of being a human incubator for nine months with restrictions on what I can put in my body and do with it.

I’m not ready for my life to be dictated by a tiny human and what they need and want.

I’m not ready to give my body, my time, my lifestyle, my energy and myself to a small human.

I’m not ready to not be ‘Kelly’ any more. Instead, I’ll be ‘Kelly who’s a mum’.

I’m not ready to stop being selfish.

But like I said, I’m terrified that when I finally am ready, it won’t happen or it will be horrifically hard.



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28 degree cracker of a day ????☀️

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I’m pretty lucky, most of the pressure I feel to have a baby is from me, no one else. Of course, family and friends make jokes here and there but those closest to me know that I’m not there and despite loving their own babies more than anything, agree it’s something I need to feel ready for.

But when will I feel ready? I thought I would feel ready now… Hell, I thought I’d feel ready yonks ago.

I’m financially secure, married, have a network of mothers around me to help, I would love a baby… what’s stopping me? But I’m just not there yet. I panic I’ll get to 35 and still not feeling ‘ready’.

I told myself, my family, my friends and my husband that this year I would be ready.


It was all planned out. I’d spend the majority of the year kicking career goals, partying like I never have before, making memories and travelling as much as I could.

Then, when my husband I travelled to Europe in October (for a VERY delayed honeymoon), we would leave the old love gloves at home and hump like mating rabbits. SIMPLE RIGHT.

But life happened and it happened in the form of COVID-19.

Listen: Get Me Pregnant is your no-BS guide to assisted fertility, hosted by Leigh Campbell and Rachel Corbett. Post continues below.

And I, like so many others, feel my life is on hold. I’m sitting at home spending stupid amounts of time on Tik Tok instead of enjoying any of the plans I had.

There are people who have lost their jobs, their income, and their loved ones to this virus, so obviously I’m very lucky relatively speaking. But I do feel like everything has been put on hold EXCEPT my biological clock. So now I worry I’ve just pushed everything back for another six months for absolutely no reason.

At the end of this, I won’t be any closer to my goals OR having a baby.

Instead, I’ll possibly have finally learnt a Tik Tok dance while a few more eggs have dried up. And that’s terrifying.

So please, I want to know when you KNEW it was time to have a baby and I also want to hear your experiences with fertility. And for the love of my sanity, I also want to hear from the poor sods who are also currently moping around like it’s Groundhog Day, watching their to-do list grow longer and their life grow shorter.