Is that really the worst thing I could do?
Growing up I always just assumed I’d become a mom. As I went through college the only thought I had about kids, was praying that I didn’t have one (sorry dad). Although my monthly period was a nuisance, it was always a sigh of relief. When my relationship with my boyfriend (who is now my husband), got more serious we discussed it as an “of course, someday”. Neither of us was in a rush, but once we got married the world began rushing us.
As a married 29 year old who is financially stable, it just doesn't make sense to so many people why I haven't started having children. Every day someone mentions it to me. Whether it be the typical “you'll understand one day when you have kids”, the inquisitive “When are you going to start trying?” to the advice giving “well do it all now while you still can, because once you have kids, the fun is over”. I usually just smile and nod. I know they mean well. However, I can’t help but notice, every event, every plan in my life is perceived by others as the lead up to having children. But what if I never have them?
What if I my husband and I choose not to? What if I can’t? What if I live a life without children of my own? If the worst thing I do in life, is not have a child, is it really so bad? If I contribute to the world in a positive way through my career, interpersonal relationships, and philanthropy, but don't have a child am I less significant? I am bombarded with facebook posts and commercials telling me I will never know true love unless I become a mother. I have met many women who don’t have children whose hearts are filled with more love than you can imagine. Dare I say, more love than some moms I have met? These same ads and posts insinuate my life doesn’t start, and my family isn’t complete until I have kids.
I am not saying that I will never have children, I am just saying that right now, I don’t want to and that feeling may never change. But the pressure from the world around me is so intense that sometimes I just cry thinking about how inadequate I am due to my lack of reproduction. I am writing this to ask the world to see me for who I am and what I have, not just a woman without a child. I love to hear about your children, in fact, I love being a part of their lives. But try to remember that just because I don't have one, doesn't make the events in my life less important or exciting as little Johnny doing poop on the potty. Talk to me about my life, you may be surprised to find some things out about me you missed when you were reading my biological clock.
The point is whether I never have kids, or I end up having one hundred of them, my life is going to be filled with love, and happiness. It may be a different kind of love and happiness than yours, but that's okay. I am still a woman and I am still a good person. Most importantly I am a human being who just wants to feel like her life matters just as much as the next.