I was 20 years old. I had the world at my feet... and the one thing I wanted more than anything, was to have a baby.
It’s not your usual scenario at that age, right? But for me, the craving to have a child was all-consuming.
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When I told my now husband what I wanted, he resisted. Being nine years older than me he knew what I’d be sacrificing to dive straight into parenthood. He encouraged me to travel, start my career, to experience the world.
But my mind was made up. I’d done some travel, I had a decent job under my belt. Most of my friends had packed their bags and headed straight to uni – a path I knew just wasn’t for me.
Yes, I craved having a child. But I also craved a higher sense of purpose.
And look, I get that there’s a certain naivety that comes with being 20 and making that kind of decision. Cards on the table? I don’t think I ever fully understood what it meant, or how it would impact my life overall.
It just felt right. I wanted to be a young mum. And I wanted to enjoy that youth alongside my son. So I steered our path in that direction.
My husband and I got married when I was 21 – and we’d been trying to get pregnant for a few months before. So nine months and five days after our wedding, our son Tex was born. In that moment I held everything I’d longed for, for as long as I could remember, in the single crook of my arm.
Falling pregnant in 2006 and giving birth in 2007 came with its own unique set of benefits. Facebook was just beginning to take hold and social media was nowhere near where it’s at today. It meant I could write my own book on how I wanted to parent, instead of constantly comparing myself to the shiny, immaculately groomed mummy bloggers that have since descended across our socials.
Of course, 100 per cent French linen baby rompers and perfect brows weren’t the only things I was lacking. I was at home, wrapped up in my baby bubble, when I saw my friends’ photos popping up all over MySpace and Facebook.
There they were, backpacking across Europe, eating pizza in Italy, drinking beer in Germany, climbing mountains in Thailand. All the things most of us do in our early twenties, right?
Not me. I was on the couch breastfeeding my baby, while watching The Simple Life and The Hills.