First Time Mom Over 35 Jill spent nearly two weeks “knowing” she was pregnant while the doctors said she wasn’t pregnant! Jill shared her pregnancy and birth story with InSeason Mom.
Age you gave birth: 36
Child’s name: Dean
Psychotherapy Clinic in New York City
GETTING PREGNANT AFTER AGE 35
How long were you trying to get pregnant?
We were very fortunate and got pregnant right away in the first month we tried. We decided to try for late Spring/Summer for a birth month and, voilá! I thought it would take a couple of months at least.
It wasn’t completely smooth sailing at the beginning, however. We had two doctors tell us we weren’t pregnant and that we’d had a chemical pregnancy! Although I knew something was happening, we were in limbo for about two weeks.
Finally the HGC blood test that tests your levels 48 hours apart results came back and, “My levels were rising nicely.” Okay… So we ARE pregnant! The glorious 9 months ensued!
What did you do or not do to increase your chances of getting pregnant after35?
We did not take my age into consideration when trying to conceive. It was pretty simple – I knew my cycle and we had a time frame to try. What we did not do is stress.
On another note: When I thought that we had a chemical pregnancy, it opened my eyes to how much time and effort getting pregnant could really take – as well as the emotions involved. I am very grateful to have had this realization – it makes me appreciate Dean even more.
SUPPORT FOR PREGNANCY OVER 35
How supportive were your doctors during your pregnancy?
My doctor is the one who joked with me about the AMA (Advanced Maternal Age) he had to put after my name on my charts. He said, “for NYC you’re a baby”. So, very supportive, I guess!
Did you change doctors or would like to have changed doctors? Why or why not?
I changed doctors before we conceived, as I was not happy with other OBGYN’s I had gone to previously in the city. My GP recommended Dr. Andrew (last name omitted for privacy by InSeasonMom), and he only takes patients who are pregnant or trying. He is an expert at pregnancy and delivering babies – which is what I wanted, and what I got!
Family and Friends
What was the reaction of friends and family when you told me about your pregnancy?
My in-laws were elated and surprised. We put t-shirts on our niece and nephew that said “number one cousins” and also had our due date on the back. It took them a while and a little encouragement to realize what those shirts meant, but they did and were ecstatic. Nothing was ever said about my age.
When we surprised my Mother, I learned something that day. She came to New York to visit and to celebrate her birthday with Josh and I (I am from St Louis and that is where most of my family lives), so we decided to tell her the news.
I made her a birthday cake and wrote “#1 Grandma” on it. We walked out and presented her with the cake. She was so surprised, but then noticed what was written on top. She thought we were making fun of her age and just calling her a grandma!
It turns out she wasn’t expecting me to have children, she thought I was just focused on career and other things. Once she realized that I was pregnant she teared up and was so happy. Even though she wanted grandchildren very much, she did not burden me with that pressure and I am very thankful for that. I am even more thankful that she is now a Grandmother, Grammy T!
On another note – anyone who has children later in life risks losing someone close to them before it can happen. I lost my father 3 years ago to cancer. I think about how he would be as a Grandfather everyday, but it wasn’t meant to be. He never put any pressure on me to have children, either. I’m sure that if he had seen “Grandpa” on his cake I would have learned something that day, too.
BECOMING A MOM AFTER AGE 35
LABOR AND DELIVERY
What do you remember most about the birth experience?
Luckily I remember everything, I’m not THAT old!!! Since we did not know the gender, the best part was hearing, “It’s A Boy!!” and then seeing this amazing little boy held before us behind the clear curtain (I had a gentle c section, Dean was breech for almost the entire pregnancy). Both my husband and I felt like we already knew the little guy the moment we laid eyes on him.
I’M A MOM!
What concerns you most about being a mom over 35 and how do you address these concerns?
Having a second child. I don’t think I will have time to mentally prepare for that, before it is a little too late. Another concern is one that any parent has: being around for them as long as possible. It is motivation to stay fit and healthy!
What do you enjoy most about becoming a mom after 35?
I am just enjoying being a Mom! You truly cannot describe the feelings it brings or the experience with words. It is the best thing I have ever had the privilege to do.
How has becoming a mom changed you?
Everything has a bit more meaning. Also, I am much better at utilizing the time that I have everyday – it’s hard to procrastinate these days!
What advice do you have for women considering having their first baby after 35?
Don’t read too much into what you read. For example, is the best time for you to try for a family, or to add to your family. Do it your way and don’t let anyone tell you how you should feel or what you should fear!
I’m Cynthia, publisher of InSeason Mom. I want to thank Jill for encouraging others with her story. I invite you to check out my ebook “Trying to Conceive After 35 or 40 Coping Tips and my coaching services. My prayer is that you remain encouraged during this season in your life. Blessings!