Do you prefer to listen to how I think about this question? In podcast episode 106, I talk about whether I want to start a family while dealing with post-concussion symptoms.
As I just turned 32, this is a question that often pops up in my mind. One day, I think I really want to have three children. Other days, I can’t even take care of myself. Should you get children while you’re dealing with post-concussion symptoms? Is it better not to have children, for them and me? Or would this be the best thing that ever happened to me? Can I give my children everything they deserve?
All kind of questions cross my mind, and I don’t know the answers…
* The kid of one of my friends
Table of contents
I am an aunt, and spending time with my nephews is fun and draining at the same time.
As much as I love my two little nephews (Julian, who is 3 years old and Maarten who is 3 months old at the time of writing this blog), I am so relieved when I can go home to my quiet place.
A few weeks ago, I spent three full days with them, as I was at my parents’ place, and they were there as well. My sister needed some me-time, so she dropped them at their place, my parents love it!
But I was there as well, and my dad had some emergency things going on, so it came down to my mum and me to take care of both my nephews.
* Me and my nephews
Once you’re in the middle of it, you can’t take a proper break, it ruins your sleep, and there is a wild energy in the house all day (multiple days); then you realize how much energy it takes to raise kids.
For me, it was just temporary, knowing I could leave within a few days. But what if this is your situation ALL THE TIME? I really don’t know if I could handle it. Maybe it will be different if you start your own family… Or you get used to it? I don’t know…
I am in a relationship, but we don’t know if we want to have kids
I met my boyfriend two years ago, and at the moment, we are living together in Antwerp. We both don’t know if we want to have kids, and if we decide we want them, we must be lucky to get the chance to get children of course.
He is an introvert and can’t handle busy places, lots of noise and really needs his me-time, and so do I. Sometimes, we talk about whether we want children, and we both see the positive but also negative sides.
At this moment, we don’t feel “balanced” enough to get children. We are thinking about moving to South-Europe, and we want to go back to Bali one day or travel and see more of this beautiful world. Besides that, I am focusing on my health and strengthening our relationship. It requires a lot of energy to have a relationship and live together while you deal with post-concussion symptoms, let alone starting a family next to all that.
>> Read my other blog: Living with someone with a brain injury, 7 lessons I learned to make it easier.
So, we just don't feel ready. If we ever want to have children, we want to feel stable and sure that we can give them everything they deserve. We want a house with a garden, I want to be able to manage some broken nights and just being sure I can take care of myself next to raising a child.
* The kid of one of my friends
Dealing with post-concussion symptoms while pregnant
Dealing with a concussion during pregnancy is another thing that concerns me. Many of my friends already have children and when I see the impact of a pregnancy, even on a healthy person, that was huge.
Having a concussion during pregnancy asks a lot from your body. I already deal with nausea, limited energy and emotions. How would this be when I am pregnant?
I worry the most about whether I can handle my concussion AND start a family
When I have a bad night at this moment, I mostly have a bad day as well. What if you have multiple bad nights? What if your baby cries all the time? What if it drains me? I don’t want to feel sick all the time. I am scared that that will be the case, especially when they are a baby.
Also, a baby/child picks up your energy. I want to be in a positive place and not “surviving” all the time. I am still learning how to manage my days, taking care of myself, my work/life balance, my social life and living together with my boyfriend.
I don’t want to have kids before that is stable.
My concussion changed my perspective - F*ck society
I always thought I wanted to have kids until I sustained a concussion when I was 25. I started to look differently at things. I always looked at the fun part of having kids, but now I am so much more aware there is another side as well.
Before I sustained a concussion, I thought life was always about getting a relationship, get married, get kids. But this is not how I see it anymore. My life is already different from most people’s lives, and I support everyone to live their best life.
One of my biggest things I learned in my recovery: Don’t do things because society expects you to do it. Do things because YOU want to do them.
There are no rules about how to live life. Just because some people do it in some kind of way doesn’t mean you need to do the same thing.
I believe things will go as they are meant to go
I am okay with both outcomes: having children or not having children. There are positive and negative sides to both of them.
When I don’t get children, I can fully focus on myself, my health, see more of the world, move to places and focus on my work (this community and my courses) to help people recover from their concussion. Maybe that’s my calling in life instead of having children. Who knows ;).
I recently asked this question about having children in the community, and one comment inspired me.
Are you in the same situation? Aren’t you sure if you want to have kids while dealing with your post-concussion symptoms as well?
Have trust that things will work out for you the way they’re supposed to work out.
Let’s see what the future will bring.
Free online masterclass
Have you tried many things to reduce your symptoms?
But do you notice... It's not progressing as quickly as expected? Do you feel that much more is possible but that you've just hit a roadblock on how to best achieve it?
In my free online masterclass, I share the two proven and researched methods that allowed me to reduce my symptoms by 50% within three months and ultimately even by 90%. And this also applies to 500 other concussion survivors who have already applied these methods.