What happens when all your friends have babies...

19:32

I got the very happy news today that one of my closest friends' are expecting their second child (yay!) I have two other friends who are both expecting their first children in the next few weeks, so as I wait impatiently over the next weeks and months for the baby s/he's to arrive, I can't help but reflect on just how much has changed in the last couple of years. I haven't yet left my twenties behind but already find things have changed so much in the past eight years. I used to wait impatiently for the Friday cosmopolitan and catch up over drinks, but now it's dog walkies and Sunday roasts and get-togethers over coffees and cake instead of cocktails. Is this period of peoples' lives where they see the biggest changes in lifestyle?

We all change because the world doesn't stand still, we're always learning new things and having new experiences, whether that's buying an iPad or buying your friend's daughter an orange-haired monkey called Mark. Change isn't a bad thing, where if someone says to you "You've changed" you take it like a slap in the face. Instead, it's about embracing the changes in your life; for me, that every pocket I own is now stuffed with spare dog poop-bags, and my friends' are full of nappies!

Life's too short to wear matching socks
And when I talk about changes in lifestyle, don't get me wrong, I still enjoy doing everything I did in my early twenties (except the hangovers!) What I mean is the change in our priorities. My mother taught me a wonderful philosophy that life is all about priorities and that it's up to you to decide between what is right for you and what is easy as sadly, they are not often the same thing. 

I have noticed that yes, some of my priorities have changed and that the things I do and decisions I make are different to those I made at 20. When I was 25 I made the hard decision to move away from all my friends and family - a decision that wasn't easy and saw two of my priorities fight against each other with equal vigor for which would stay on top; family vs work. The reason it was hard was that I was making a guess as to whether moving away would be worth the sacrifice of not having my family on my doorstep, as I didn't have my dream graduate role lined up but was making a (what I thought 'intuitive') gamble that by relocating to a city I'd be more likely to find it. I was scared that I was losing something, losing my friends and having to say goodbye to my family. But I never thought about the other possibilities a change in location can bring.

Four years on I am lucky enough to say that intuition paid off, in more ways than I guessed at 25. Yes, I am lucky that work has worked itself out, that I'm now in a job I love and enjoy and that previous roles have brought highs and lows and great accomplishments. But that isn't what I feel lucky for. Instead, it was that my fears were unfounded because, you see, I haven't lost my family. Instead, it has expanded because without moving, those friendships I already had wouldn't have deepened, and the new friends I'd made wouldn't be in my life - and neither would their children.

Baby snuggles: better than a cosmopolitan.
 To all my friends pre- and post-natal, this post is dedicated to you all. You are my inspiration! 

Laura x

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