Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Youth Stands Alone

I'm feeling a little discouraged today. I have been reading Life Giving Love by Kimberly Hahn (a great book, and a must read for every Catholic woman). It was recommended to my by a lady in my church group. I had mentioned that I had recently had a miscarriage, and she lent it to me. There is a whole chapter dedicated to miscarriage, and through reading this, my heart healed a little.

That's not what I'm feeling discouraged about though. In one chapter, Kimberly talks about Ministry to Moms. How it is important that we support each other in our roles as wife and mothers. How younger women who are not yet in the family way should offer help to the women who are, and how older women should help train the younger women.

This is not entirely what I'm feeling discouraged about, although it is what got me thinking about it. What I'm discouraged about is how lonely things look when there are not a lot of people my own age that are in the same state of life I'm at. For example, in my church group, I am the youngest woman out of a group of about 25 others. The next youngest is 4 years my senior (which really isn't that bad) but she does not even have kids yet (and she meets at a different group across town). In my group, the next youngest besides me is 10 years my senior and already has three kids (her oldest is 6 and youngest is 2 1/2).

This may seem like I'm being picky, but I assure you, I am not. The woman who has three children is a sweet lady, and we have plans to take our kiddos to a children's museum sometime soon.

Here's the scenario. DH, Fritter, and I were at a dinner party one evening, hosted by a wonderful couple with four children. Their oldest is 17 and youngest is 6, and I think they are maybe 25 years older than us. There were a few other families there as well, but it was pretty obvious that we are young, and Fritter was the only baby, the next oldest being the 6 year old. One lady said to me, "I hope you don't take offense to this, but you look really young". I never know how to respond to this, but I get it a lot. I just said, "Umm...Thanks?" Just like that, in the form of a question and everything. Then she said, "But you're a mother!" That I am.

Now, I know that she meant no harm, and there wasn't any done. But after reading what I read last night, I realized that no matter where I go, it seems I stand alone. Is there really no one my age having babies? Not so long ago, someone my own age may have already had three babies. I know I'm young, but I am still (almost) 26, so it's not like I'm a teenager. It shouldn't be shocking to see a young couple starting out their family, but in today's world, even amongst other Catholics, it is.

I'm not really trying to make any point, just that it can be lonely when you stand alone a lot of the time.


Michelle said...

There was a time when I too was always the youngest one of any group. It ends all too soon. Now I'm an old fogie. Keep looking. Other young moms are out there.

Anonymous said...

Oh goodness, I remember it too! At 26 I had three dc, and I was (and still am) the youngest in my group of catholic friends. I prayed for a long time for God to send me someone "near" to my own age... instead I grew into my group... does that make sense?
My dh and I still look too young by the world's standards, which makes it fun to shock people further by telling them I have 5dc lol!
Michelle is right, this time will pass. As your family grows you will become more busy and God will send more people your way...
I think when my first child was very young it was a very lonely time for me- everybody else had plenty of kids, they were busy with school... it will pass
God Bless