BEING a “young mum” was never something I really thought about.
I met my husband, fell in love, got married and had my first child just after my twenty-first birthday.
My third child was born just before I turned 26.
They were the days where all the mums were having their babies before 30 – there was a lot of hype about it back then so us mums would often talk about the need to have “as many children as we could’ before 30.
So I never really thought much about it.
I do like to say however that I grew up with my kids.
In my 20s I was so excited and full of energy – I would sit on the floor and play with the kids for hours every day.
I loved being a mother – even though I was quite “inexperienced” about life, especially the responsibilities of being a parent – but because I didn’t know what I didn’t know, it never bothered me in the slightest.
It wasn’t until my children started kindergarten and school that I noticed I was much younger than most of the other mums.
In fact, some of the mums were the same age as my own mother.
I felt like a big kid myself dropping my kids off and still being a little shy to talk to the teacher or the other mums.
It was probably heightened by the fact that because I am so short, there were times I would go up to the primary school and on free dress days and teachers mistaken for a student.
But nothing’ like becoming a mum to find your “adulthood”.
The fierceness of a mum and the protectiveness I felt for my children is often what helped me find my voice in those moments of uncertainty, insecurity or immaturity.
My love and the responsibility I felt for them, accompanied by the lessons I learnt from my own mum to put my children first over my own needs helped me be what my kids needed me to be.
Being in my 30s as my children approached the teenage years – they are some of my favourite memories – dancing in the living room with my 12 year old, doing the Nutbush on the dance floor at parties with my young teenager, chatting on Skype alongside my teenagers to their friends, getting excited about the next High School Musical or when Taylor Swift is coming to town alongside them.
Now as I enter my 40s with my first born out of school, I love the future possibilities ahead.
I’m excited about journeying with my kids as adults, and also the possibilities of applying all I have learnt as a mother to my passions and career ahead.
I wouldn’t change being a young mum for the world.
Kym Keady is a Brisbane mother who works in Catholic ministry.