Are you sitting on the fence about child thing? Do you wonder, “Should I have kids?” It’s like, you envision yourself being a grandma one day, but you can’t quite see yourself as a mom.
Have you ever thought to yourself: am I ready to start dressing frumpy? Am I ready to never go out again for the rest of my life? Am I in a place where I hate fun? No. I guess that means I’m not ready for a kid.
Sure, that made sense in your 20s. Come on. It’s your twenties. You’re building a career. You’re having the time of your life. And guys? Please. You’re not ready to be tied down.
Not Getting Younger
But now, like Bob Seger says, “Sweet 16’s turned 31.” Or 35. Or 37. You met Mr. Right. You keep having candle-heavy birthdays, and still, no maternal instinct. It makes you wonder…am I just not cut out for this whole “kid” thing?
Some people are okay with it. They know they don’t want ‘em and won’t regret it. Their lives are full and fulfilling, and that’s great. But you’re not quite in that pot either. You’re still imagining a little person on a future Christmas morning. Or telling those grandkids about your great adventures. Still, this vague notion isn’t quite enough to pull the trigger.
So what do you do? You’re not getting any younger. Female fertility hasn’t gotten the memo about equality—time’s ticking. Do you go for it? Will it (are you even allowed to think this?) ruin your life if you do?
Trapped by Indecision
If you’ve ever had these feelings, you’re obviously not alone. There’s at least one other ambivalent woman out there who feels you: me. I went from gazing at babies to scowling at them. From daydreaming about family picnics to feeling pre-resentful about my career going down the drain.
The indecision was exhausting.
Here’s what I’ll say if you find yourself in the same boat: if you think you might want children, and your partner is definitely on board—as in, wanting to be an active and involved father—you should go for it.
The fact is, your window of opportunity is short. You might only have a few years from the time you meet Mr. Right to when you can’t safely have children anymore. Believe me, I also felt resentful about that. It doesn’t make it any less true. This is a special and narrow time, despite advances in modern medicine.
Just Do It
If you want kids, you should do it.
Sure, it’s hard. It’s a total life upheaval. No, things won’t be the same. But why do you want things to stay the same forever? Do you want to live permanently in one stage of your life? Not really. Anyway, it’s not like you’ll be on house arrest forever. People work, go out, get drunk, and have a blast…even with a child at home. How? Because babysitters. You’ll figure it out.
You Might Like It
Besides, and you’re probably not even taking this into account, but…having a child is pretty awesome. I can explain in terms you understand what makes it difficult, tiring, and sometimes dull. But I cannot convey the upside to someone who hasn’t experienced it. Nobody accurately can. The upside is true love.
If you love your partner and imagine making more of you, do it. If you picture a family when you think of the future, do it. If you value history and a continuation of your life, do it.
There’s no good time. There’s always something left undone. There are more plans to put in place.
Once it happens, it won’t always be rainbows and sunshine. (What is?) You won’t get a lobotomy in the delivery room and all of a sudden think being awake all night is awesome or diaper changes are cute. You’ll still be you. Sucky things will still suck.
But you will have Frankensteined out a human. A real, live, living human being that’s half you and half him, and it gives meaning to the word incredible.
Spoken like a true breeder. I know.
Q: What holds you back? What are you most scared of?