Carole Hobson of Britain had a long and successful career as a barrister and social worker, but she still longed to be a mother. She was in a committed relationship but her partner did not want to have children at his age, so Hobson ended the 11 year relationship. Her yearning for children became so strong that she underwent 5 rounds of IVF using donated eggs from a 24-year-old Indian woman and sperm from a Scandinavian engineering graduate. In the process, she spent about 20,000 pounds and gave birth this past December to twins Matthew and Frieda to become Britain’s oldest single mother of twins at age 58.
While she doesn’t say she regrets having her babies, she does admit that motherhood is overwhelming and exhausting. Hobson had to undergo an emergency caesarean section. Her babies, Matthew and Frieda spent the first eight-and-a-half weeks of their life in the neo-natal unit. Doctors feared the worst when their condition deteriorated after birth. It has been a long battle filled with many health conditions for both babies and mom.
“Like many new mothers, I’ve had my “what have I done?” moments.”
An article on the Daily Mail is placing an emphasis on these words unnecessarily. It’s a reasonable thought and I don’t think she should feel ashamed for saying so. I remember being in the throws of sleepless nights and pure exhaustion, feeling almost drunk from lack of sleep. It was not pretty. I can only imagine being 58 years old and having twins!
Hobson very plainly states that she didn’t have any maternal feelings in her 20s and 30s, and it wasn’t until she was much older that she even thought about having kids. She does admit she cannot wait to get back to work and hire a nanny, but many new moms would feel a bit of cabin fever after being stuck inside with two newborn babies who have also been very sick and required constant attention.
I intentionally chose to have my children on the younger side. My third and last child was born when I was 29. I know that many women today are putting off having kids until they are established in their career. I don’t blame them. I just didn’t want to do that. I nurtured my career alongside my children. It wasn’t easy but I just didn’t want to start having my children in my late thirties. Now at that age, I am done with the baby and toddler stage. I’m officially finished with changing diapers and 2am feedings.
There is never a right time to have kids if you ask me. You can never predict when you will meet your life partner or settle down and start a family. You can certainly try but what if you never meet that special someone? What if, like Hobson you meet him only to realize he doesn’t want children? Not many women would sacrifice their partner to go solo on the mom front at age 58. So I applaud her. Every new mom has felt overwhelmed at one time or another. It’s normal…and after being childless until age 58, motherhood must take a little getting used to.