When they married a decade ago, Cozzens and LaLiberte decided to try for kids anyway, and with the help of a medical procedure for him she was carrying their baby, Leo, five months later.
She'd grown up with siblings and wanted Leo to have that, too, so a miscarriage when she was 43 was devastating. They went to another doctor, who told her to forget it; she was too old, Cozzen's previous fertility problem too complicated. She wept in the parking lot. They didn't know then that medicine sometimes gets it wrong. She was already pregnant. When Isabella was born, six years ago, they thought about sending the doctor a photo.
She calls herself a flower power mom and has a blog by that name, a meeting ground for older moms who share experiences. "We are the shock troops, if you will, for a demographic and a future where no woman or mother as a minority collective has gone before. It's both scary and fascinating."
Older moms definitely get more tired, she said, and have to learn to pay attention to their own health. It's part of giving kids "the energetic mom they're entitled to." A drop in fertility is real. So is the criticism some people feel emboldened to offer about an older mom's choices. And it's harder to find pals among the moms of kids' friends, since they're 20 years younger.
But the pluses are quite lovely, she said, including studies that prove later mothers cope as well as younger ones with newborns, don't feel more stress and tend to be more patient with their children. "That younger mom might have more energy, but I have discipline, experience and knowledge," she said. "And I'm more financially secure. That matters. It's an expensive venture to have kids."
By the time she became a mom, she'd worked a couple of decades, honing skills. "I had been a homeowner, I knew how to manage things, I'd trained to handle tough decisions."
As for older mothers dying before their children are grown, life happens. Her own mom was not an older mom, but died when she was 24. Besides that, she added, these days, 40 is midlife, with decades to go.
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