Ok, I admit the reason why I’m blogging is because I am procrastinating. Cos I dont wanna study. (Please dont make me pleaaaseeeee)
So, the above question ‘When is the right time to have a baby?’ is one that my female colleagues and I talk about time and time again – the single, the married/with partners with no kids and the one with kids.
I’ve thought that question myself before. I knew I want to have a kid (or two…or three…ok four lah maximum insyaAllah) but I didnt know when ‘it’ can fit in. Being a doctor nowadays doesnt mean it ends after graduation. No, no…. first you have to do some sort of housemanship or what is called foundation years. Usually last for two years. You rotate around specialties in these two years and eventually supposed to find your calling by the end of it. Some know what they want to do since diaper time, some still dont know what to even after housemanship years. Now the first year of working is tough work. You’re getting into the gist of having a responsibility of lives in your hands and hoping never to mess up (one registrar said a good day’s work means you haven’t killed anyone). So, the first year is kinda hard to get preggers – well, I’ve seen people do it, kudos to them.
Then you enter a specialty and you think – I wanna finish my exams first. Then you get to the third year and by then, in a lot of specialties, you up a grade and become registrars. and suddenly theres a whole lotta responsibilities and workload and you think …. so when???
A lot of medics I know want to at least get their exams over and done with or go past registrar (ok, some wants to be a consultant first). The youngest age to be consultant – if you make it in that straight line without failing exams and getting pregnant/sick/time off – is probably around 33 or 34 years old. Which isnt THAT old really.
Well, the advice I’ve given to people thinking about it are these (and this is just my two cents):
1. There will never be the ‘right’ time.
There will be a time that feels better than others. But in the medicine world, something or other will always come up. If not exams, then going up a post. So unless you’re willing to be consultant and get pregnant, you can wait till then.
2. You will never feel ready for being a parent.
It’s like going into that ward for the first time as a doctor. Nothing will prepare you for it – not the endless amount of studying, not the advice people have given you. You’ll just have to get through it and learn things the hard way. Remember: there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Having a kid does not necessarily mean and end to your life.
That said, my mama once advised me to ‘puaskan hati before kawin’. I think she meant do what I wanna do before committing myself. And I’m so grateful for that advice and support. I’ve done the travelling business, my favourite memory is going to New York with my best friend months before she got married. It was our last trip together and it was epic.
I’ve done all the hiking, and camping, and paintballing, and caravan-ing, and travelling here and there.
And I hope it won’t end there. I’m waiting for Zayan and insyaAllah next baby to be older and we can travel too (country wishlist of M and I: Japan!).
3. Having a kid will shift that picture for you.
Before having Zayan, I’ve always thought ‘ok I wanna do this, pass exam, become registrar… bla bla bla’. My career was and is an important part of me. There were (are!) achievements to fulfill, exams to pass. But you know what, when you have a kid, those things doesn’t matter so much anymore. I mean, I still want it but I also realise the bigger picture.
It’s like suddenly I realise I am this one small person in this big world and my career is not the sole thing in life. I don’t know if I’m making sense or not. Basically, ever since Zayan, I’ve become more chillax if there are hiccups in the pathway of getting what I want.
Things happen, you get pregnant, yknow stuff like that.