One Child from being Childless

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

I wrote this awhile ago. It wasn't until I read this piece at BlogHer about the new Pew Report regarding being "childless by choice" that I dug this out of the drafts.

As always, I suspect I say what many other women feel, but fear to admit.

I would not chose to NOT be a mother.

Actually, maybe I would.  I said the first thing because I figured I would get hate mail.

My inside joke? "One child from being childless"...Ha-Ha?

Before Emily came into our lives with the fanfare of a thousand volcano's, I assumed that a child would be folded neatly into our existence. I was born to be mother. I mothered other peoples children for a living.

Ours would be a snap.

And there are weekends like this, after Terrance has been away for a week - and then hassles me for some inconsequential detail ( like the fact his bottle of water was right next to his side of the bed where he left it on MONDAY) and Emily has jumped up and down on every last one of my nerves, then taken a hacksaw and electric drill to the others,  and my sleeping hasn't been any better, and Terrance is standing in front of me RIGHT now, yammering about god knows what, but wanting my WHOLE attention ( not unlike Emily)...

That I think...Did I make the right decisions? Was marriage and a child the best idea? Would I have done better as a single girl - enmeshed in my career? What would I trade for silence? For solitude?
How many more years before she moves out?

Then I think..It's gray and cold and rainy. I am sleep deprived. I have school work to do, and no umph to get to it. I must be close to my period. It is all of those things talking, making me regret motherhood and marriage.

And the quiet voice that lives deep in my brain says, "No, sweetie - you do think about it...but all women do too, and that's Ok. People just rarely say it out loud , is all." I shake hands with my single Dawn and wave at her as she walks back out the door.

And I shake myself off and fold the laundry, and pack her backpack for tomorrow.

3 Baleful Regards:

Bethany said...

Have thought it, felt it and not afraid to admit it.

c8h10n4o2 said...

I've been thinking it since I was a kid. I haven't changed my mind by 38. I'm glad I didn't let anyone convince me that I would change my mind or that I was wrong. There would be a whole lot of miserable people if I had.

La said...

I usually just lurk but this struck a chord for me...

I am childless (and still very young) but very early on in life, the best thing anyone ever did for me was be honest with me about how hard it was being mother. This particular friend of the family had all the trappings that should have made it "easy"; great hubby, well behaved child, money to blow. But still, she managed to make motherhood very human rather than some ideal. Because of it, I have been able to look at motherhood objectively, rather than charging full steam ahead into it because I am "supposed to" like alot of my peers. And I have to say, thus far, I am fairly happy with coming home to my career everyday.

Lots of people think it. And maybe if more were upfront about it, many moms wouldn't feel so demonized for not being magically transformed into some bionic, superhuman archtype immediately upon conception.

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