Juggling: What Older Moms And Young Moms Have In Common
The tension between older mothers and younger mothers if often palatable if you’ve ever attended any school’s open house. For two sets of women that would seem to have a lot in common, younger mothers and older ones are often pitted against one another for making starkly different life choices. But while the mainstream media would have you choose sides as to which is the better path, there is a whole sect of women who have taken both.
Alexa Aguilar wrote about her parallel motherhoods of being a young single mother to her now teenage daughter as well as an older mom to her two toddlers. She reflects on the two experiences as being riddled with pros and cons: for all the youth and energy she had for her older child, she constantly felt ostracized by older parents. Although she’s presently more financially secure than she was in her younger days, she worries that she has become a more neurotic parent, with more time to obsess over development and decisions.
When I was in my early 20s, I had some serious stamina – I attended college and juggled jobs, internships and friendships. Amidst it all was a little girl who tagged along with me everywhere. I read parenting books but I didn’t obsess over parenting decisions. As a single mother in school, I was just too busy. We played at the park and went to the library, but much of what I remember of those years is feeling like I was constantly juggling all the demands on my time.
Alexa’s meditation on assuming both roles in a single life reveals more about what older mothers and young mothers share rather than their differences. As an older mother, Alexa writes that “[she is] still juggling, but the balls in the air are much different.” Juggling alone seems to link both experiences for Alexa, which reads as a more distinguishing factor of motherhood than age.