I’m afraid to have kids and that’s okay

Written by Haley Rolf
Published on July 22, 2022

I always thought I would go to college, find my husband, graduate, get married, and have my first baby by the time I turned twenty-five. If there was ever an indicator that I do not have control and God is the master planner, it was me turning twenty-six without any prospects of a husband and starting to lose hope in building a family.

My friends and community were all moving in that direction. I felt like I was being left behind and kept wondering when my turn would come. But then it hit me: I can’t possibly love someone else if all I am doing is coveting the thought of having a husband.

So I decided to pray for my future husband. I wrote down the non negotiables (things like dancing in the kitchen and having a rocking sense of humor) and began to date myself and learn to be okay with that before I could open myself up to another person.

Little did I know, God was just preparing my heart for my perfect person. Six months into this journey, I met my now fiance and soon-to-be husband. God revealed to me all the things I had been praying for and gave me a face to the vision he placed on my heart so long ago.

Things don’t always go according to my plan

So began our journey of discussing what our married life might look like, including how many children we both wanted, how we wanted our kids to be kind and show mercy, but also funny and inviting to their peers. 

But while planning the future and dreaming of the family I might have some day, there remains a little piece of me that is fearful of something not going according to my plan.

Remember when I thought I would be married by twenty-two and a mother by twenty-five?  That certainly didn’t go according to my plan either…

The what if’s that run through my head

What if we dream of these perfect children, I suffer from infertility, and having a family doesn’t come as easy as they make it seem?

“Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer”  (Romans 12:12).

“But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience” (Romans 8:25).

What if I can’t conceive as many children as we have dreamed of?

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11).

What if my child’s life doesn’t look like I imagined?

“Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him” (Psalm 127:3).

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations” (Jeremiah 1:5).

How will my life change?

People often tell you that your life will never look the same after having children. What if I am not ready to give that up? Does that make me not thankful for the future? I don’t know.

So I’ve made a decision. I am changing my perspective of being afraid of what I will lose, to being joyful and excited for what I will gain.

I am excited to see who my children will be and I can’t wait to see my husband become a dad. I look forward to telling our families when we are expecting, but while I am genuinely excited for all the things that come with this next phase of life, that small amount of fear is still in the back of my mind…

I am not in control of my life! God has created a beautiful and bountiful life for me and I am to remain faithful that all things are from God. Having my own family is a good thing and a gift from God himself.

Three reminders in times of doubt

  1. Bearing children is a gift from God.

We pray for the health and safety of our future children, but how can we shift our mindset to thanking God for allowing us to carry them? God gives us the gift of family and carries our kids into this world already knowing exactly who they will be. How cool is that? He already knows my future children and all their faults. And he still loves them.

  1. This is a chance to share the story of Jesus and teach my kids that they are loved by someone greater.

Not only is it my job to keep my kids alive, it’s an opportunity to let them know who Jesus is, what he did for them, and the abundant life he offers us. 

  1. It’s okay to be afraid of having kids.

It’s okay to not have the same reactions as you see in the movies! It’s okay to be shocked when you see the 2 lines and not immediately feel excited. It’s okay to be nervous about finances and how you are going to afford the new addition to your life. It’s okay to not enjoy being pregnant. It’s okay to not fit the mold of what is expected when you find out you are expanding your family.

But remember: God does not send you down a path for which He has not equipped you. So, while you may not think you are ready for children, God has prepared you for this exact thing at this exact time.

My plan does not look like God’s plan

My life does not look the way I anticipated when I was eighteen, but it looks so much sweeter than I could have imagined.

I’m still afraid of having kids and I probably will be even after I have them. But through the anxiety of what the future holds, I am reminded to rely on God’s faithfulness.

So future mamas, we’ve got this and we can stick together and navigate what life looks like next together. Here is a reminder I often need: My plan does not look like God’s plan… and oftentimes, for the better.

Consider a few extra resources:

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Haley Rolf

Haley Rolf is the Director of Marketing for Denison Ministries, and oversees all digital marketing and social media for Christian Parenting.

Haley graduated from University of Arkansas with an Advertising and Public Relations degree and quickly got involved in the non-profit world after serving many years in FCA and Young Life throughout high school and college.

On the weekends you can catch Haley playing pickle ball, drinking an iced coffee on Saturday morning walks before the Texas heat sets in, and watching the San Diego Padres with her fiancé.

Read more about Haley

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