Friday, May 16, 2014
so, you just got married and everyone around you is congratulating you on throwing the best wedding of the century and, more importantly, finding your perfect match! However, a few of those congratulations follow with that awkward question: “So, are you guys thinking about having kids yet?”
Depending on your age, background and parental instincts, your reaction will range from, “Are you kidding me? We just got married!” to “Of course, what do you think the honeymoon was for?” Whichever side of the baby-fever spectrum you’re on, there are quite a few things you need to do before you increase your family of two to a family of three. So, before you officially give in to that baby-craving phenomenon known as your biological clock, here are 10 things you need to do before you have kids.
Join a low-key sports league just for fun. From kickball to dodge ball, this is your chance to get out there and act like a kid again. Why is this important to do before you have children? Because when you have kids, you’ll still be going to kickball games, but you’ll be watching your little one from the sidelines instead of being in the middle of the action on the field.
Coachella, SXSW, Bonnaroo, it doesn’t matter which music festival you pick, but it’s important to experience one of these live entertainment experiences just once in your life. You don’t have to stage dive or crowd surf, but you do have to go, let loose and have fun. Once you have kids these events will be much harder to attend, and you’ll more likely be listening to the soundtrack of the latest Disney movie instead of some cool indie rock band.
From Mardi Gras in New Orleans to Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany, there’s a reason these festivals becomes world famous and inspire people from around the world to travel far distances just to be a part of the fun. Pick one you’ve always wanted to try and make it your next trip with your sweetie this summer. Second honeymoon, anyone?
Ah Sunday brunch, the best meal of the week. It’s relaxed, it’s easy, it’s not happening when you have kids. Enjoy this leisurely late breakfast/early lunch combo while you still can by scheduling a once a week brunch with your favorite friends. You can sit back, share a deep conversation about nothing and truly enjoy your vanilla latte for as long as you like without someone tugging on you shirt saying, “I’m bored!”
Darn it, you deserve to spend $200 on a pair of perfectly distressed jeans. Maybe it is a waste of your hard-earned cash, but there’s nothing wrong with giving yourself a little gift every now and then (as long you’re not going into debt to buy it)! In a few years, your expenses will go from expensive dinners in the town to expensive strollers and car seats, so give yourself this gift now.
Wait, make that, “Save like there’s a tomorrow…” because there is! Yes, we know we just said you should drop some cash on yourself and enjoy a personally-picked-out present by none other than yourself, but that should not be a common occurrence. If you’re serious about having kids, start saving like your old man always advised you to do. You’ll be happy you did.
Why not test out the whole “caring for someone 24 hours a day thing” by bringing an adorable fuzzy creature into your home? They’re fun, they’re loving and they’re the perfect way to learn what it means to care for someone (or something) totally dependent upon you.
Remember that very first time you stayed out all night and how free you felt? Capture that feeling once again by hitting the town with your better half. Maybe it’s on New Year’s Eve, perhaps it’s on an adventurous vacation out of the country, or maybe it’s just a quiet night spent in front of a Scrabble board, competitively vying for the title of “World’s Greatest Wordsmith.” Just try it one more time because once you have kids, you’ll probably want to spend your evenings at home with them rather than on the town with anyone else!
Before you even think about having kids, you need to go after whatever it is that makes you passionate. Always wanted to your own business? Give it a try now! Been thinking about writing a novel for the past five years? Do it this year. Go after your dream job will only be pushed farther down on the “to-do” when you have children. Do it now so you can someday make your little ones proud!
…And to your future bambino, describing who you are at this moment, what you want out of life and what you hope your future will look like as a family. It will be a beautiful peek into who you are at this present moment, and that’s something both you and your child will cherish forever. But this can only be done before you have kids.