Yesterday I was at a naming ceremony for the second child of one of my oldest friends and my bridesmaid.
I went on my own because it was a Sunday and Dave wasn’t able to make it.
I was very much looking forward to meeting her beautiful little girl for the first time, and the 150 mile drive on a Sunday morning was really pleasant. The weather was gorgeous too.
But I had a lump in my throat throughout the whole service. It was so loving, and her parents were so happy. The readings were beautiful and the messages sincere. There were many times that I sat there and wished I had Dave’s hand in mine for him to squeeze reassuringly. I kept picturing what Dave and I would do for our children. We both don’t believe in God so a naming ceremony is a nice alternative to a christening. I thought about what I would wear. I thought about the names we would have. I thought about who we would choose for our children’s guardians. I thought about what readings we would have. I thought about who we would invite. I thought about the venue we would choose. I thought about all our loved ones taking pictures of OUR special child. The child we longed for. I had a lot of time to think.
I distracted myself with taking photos. But there were times that I got misty eyed and when my friend locked eyes with mine I had to blink away the tears super quick. God knows why I didn’t think to pack tissues!
I held it together and enjoyed the buffet and catching up with her friends and family that I last saw at the naming ceremony for their first daughter. I went to say my goodbyes and I thought “Well done. You didn’t lose it in epic proportions!”
Then my friend walked me out to say a private and personal goodbye.
Oh my god I could see it coming. The lump bypassed my throat and went straight to my eyes and turned on those leaking taps. She didn’t even need to say what she said. She just had to look at me and I could see what she was thinking.
She told me how much she appreciated me being there. She said she understood how difficult it must have been for me to be there, alone. She said she’s always thinking of me, and that she’s there for me. She said she loved me.
I’m crying just writing this now. What an amazing friend. I’m so lucky to have her in my life, even though we live so far apart from each other now that we don’t get to see each other often anymore.
Then after this, I headed to Bicester Shopping Village in Oxfordshire, UK. It is a designer outlet location. It was another pleasant drive there, but again, I was missing Dave like mad. I can’t remember the last time I did an adventure on my own. For the past 10 years I’ve done near enough everything with him. That’s not because I’m clingy or lack independence (that couldn’t be further from the truth!) but because we love each other so much. We love nothing more than sharing life experiences together and creating memories as a team.
I had money to spend. My grandparents both died several years ago. I spent my grandad’s inheritance on rent during a tricky time in my life when I was between jobs many years ago, and I’ve always felt pissed off about that. So when my mum sold most of my nan’s jewellery a few years back, I was determined to spent it on a special keepsake. It was the first time I ever had £50 notes in my possession and I wanted to spend them on something worthwhile. I also had money from Dave leftover at Christmas that was intended for me to buy a new handbag. It never happened, so he gave me more money for my birthday last month. I combined this with my birthday money from my parents and my brother.
I bought a Michael Kors watch and bag, and a Pandora charm bracelet (my first one!) featuring two meaningful charms; two lovebirds to represent Dave and me, and a USA country charm to remind me of our amazing honeymoon.
I spent around £500 altogether, including the hotel, food and some of my own money. It did cross my mind that it was a lot of money to indulge in. I could have put that into my savings.
But then I thought, fuck it.
Life is for living. Those £50 notes had been wasting time spending YEARS in a purse when I could have been wearing a pretty watch in all that time.
Dave’s money was intended for a designer handbag. Not to spend years in a bank account whilst I carried on using my supermarket handbag or the one from 10 years ago that is battered and worn.
My family’s money could have been frittered on petrol and grocery shopping. When actually I’ve been wanting a Pandora charm bracelet for years. And now I’ve got one. And now my family can buy me charms for presents and anniversaries.
All that money could have gone on my baby fund. But who knows when I’ll fall pregnant? I could fall pregnant this month, next month or next year. It’s extreme, but I could die before I fall pregnant.
Money is for spending and life is for living. When I fall pregnant, I’ll think about money then. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not frivolous. I’m a sensible saver and an occasional spender. Well now I just refuse to be guilt shamed for spending money.
If I have any friends or strangers wanting to comment “ooh I couldn’t bring myself to spend so much money now I have children” or “enjoy it while you can, you won’t be able to spend money like that when you have a baby” I DON’T WANT TO HEAR IT.
Of course I won’t spend like this when I’m a parent. But it’s making me feel better okay? I’d trade anything to have a baby of my own. I’m sick of not spending money ‘just in case’.
Dave and I went on a 3 week once-in-lifetime honeymoon in 2014. We went to New York, Las Vegas, LA, Hawaii and San Francisco. With spending money, it cost me £17,000. Family, friends and guests contributed £1000. That’s £16,000 I saved up on my own. I’m bloody proud of that. People said we could have used it for a house deposit, a car, or future baby savings. Yes we could have, but we had the BEST time of our lives, with memories that will stay with us until we die. We still talk about it today. We will never be in that fortunate position again. I don’t regret spending that money for a second.
Had I been sensible, and saved that money instead… well, how’s that been working out for me?
3 years later and I’m STILL not pregnant am I?
So at least while I’m waiting to fall pregnant, I can cheer myself up by having my wrists and shoulder adorned by a designer bag, watch and pretty bracelet.
And one day I will pass them down to my daughter.