I wanted to have my children "early" - I decided I would be done reproducing when I turned 30. Having kids is hard no matter when you have them - parenting is unpredictable and amazing at the same time.
I went to college and work part time (my husband makes enough that I can stay home most of the time until my kids are all in school, but we sometimes have to pinch the pennies!). We still have an active social life and bought our first house two years ago.
My children have the opportunity to know and be loved their great grandparents, not feel the pressure of a huge generation gap, etc. I love the idea that - barring some tragedy - I will be able to run with my grandkids, have time to travel when I am older, hold my great-grandchildren, have my children to share my journeys with, etc.
I think that a little biology research will show you that it is healthier for both mother and child to have children in the 20's and early 30's. Bodies support pregnancy more easily, "bounce back" more quickly, and result in less birth & delivery complications.
I think that too often, focus is put on:
*"living YOUR life first" (Kids grow up and leave!)
*"being prepared" (No one is ever "prepared' for the challenges of parenthood!)
*"owning a house/having money/having a great career (Kids don't care about that junk; give them lots of love and what they NEED! Kids don't always need to get everything they want!)
*"you have to be married" (Nice, but let's get real. Kids don't require marriage to be born. As long as both partners agree to be parents what's the hullabaloo? Kids need love and support- not paper files saying their parents are married!)
Do what is right for you! Parenthood is not always easy but it is always worth it no matter when you become a parent! Good luck!
32 year old mother of 4, ages 12, 10, 6 & 5.