I was stressed out last night. Expecting a baby with no family in the area to care for our toddler during an impromptu delivery, and with a surgeon husband who is "on call" for the entire stretch of the Thanksgiving holiday, just days before our due date, is a little nerve-wrecking. To top it off, our nanny will be on vacation, and our OB will be on Jury duty the week of our expected delivery.
I rambled to Daddy MD, the ever rational surgeon, whose response was, "I can watch Peanut during the delivery. We have to be practical about it."
To which I replied, "I am not in a very practical mental state."
"I know," Daddy MD says cautiously.
So, we still don't have a plan other than crossing our fingers for no labor until after the Thanksgiving weekend.
Unable to sleep, I was browsing Twitter links, when I happened upon this article about fertility. Beware before clicking the link, it is a bit disheartening for career women. Reading this article brought me back to my medical school auditorium, our first year of medical school. I was 22 years old and sitting next to (future) Daddy MD, whom I had recently started dating. Our lecturer was a male OB-GYN, who said frankly to all the women in the class, "If you are over the age of 25, your chances of fertility are already declining."
What?! 25! That seems so young - how can he say this to a room full of career-oriented women, most of us more concerned about passing our next anatomy exam than finding a suitable mate, settling down, and starting a family? The nerve of this guy to scare us this way.
I resisted an emotional outrage to Daddy MD, not wanting to send him running for the hills from a girl he just started dating, by already talking about marriage and children.
Truth is, as bluntly as our professor spoke, his point was educational. Most women are unaware of how quickly fertility can decline, especially after age 35. I debated sharing this post, but I think it is better to be aware of this reality, than to be surprised later in life. My objective is not to pressure anyone to rush into having children, but rather to inform you, hopefully a little less harshly than I was informed ten years ago, of basic fertility trends.
When I think of the alarming rates of couples struggling to conceive (1 in 8), my end of pregnancy woes seem unsubstantiated. Sure, there is no perfect time to have children. As many female physician mentors told me, "if you wait for the perfect time, it may never happen." I am reminded of how we have been blessed.
So, when I think of the chaos that could quite possibly develop over the next two weeks, I remember that our birth plan (or lack of one), really is a small part of a bigger picture. Our goal is to come home with a healthy baby.