Easy parenting

When I was growing up my sole career ambition was to be married and have children. I know, it's not at all 'enlightened' but it doesn't matter because women's liberation means having the freedom to make choices, and that was the choice I wanted to make. 

As I discovered later, we can't always fulfil the choices we make.  I'm now 38... and a half... and the chance that I'll be able to have kids is, realistically, pretty slim. Part of that is because I'm a Christian, which means I would want to choose the marriage part before the bit where I have children. Additionally, I don't want to marry anyone who doesn't share my beliefs and that narrows the available 'pool' in a seriously drastic fashion.... but that's okay. I'm free to make these choices and I know the consequences.  And of course, even if I do get married within my potential child bearing years there is absolutely no guarantee I'd be able to have children anyway, partly because of my age and partly because... sometimes things don't work the way you hope they will.

The thought that I might not have children - probably won't have children, if I'm being realistic - is heartbreaking at times.  I have people with children say to me, "Oh, but you're so lucky. You don't have any of the pressures that we have... parents never get a minute to themselves, it's so completely full-on..."  This merely makes me want to reply with either, "So why did you have more than one?" or "I'd be happy to take them off your hands if they're such a burden and you feel so 'unlucky' compared with me."  But I don't because I know they're trying to be kind even if their kindness feels more like salt in my wounds sometimes.  Also I know that parenting IS full-on and loving your children often makes it more stressful because then there's guilt about feeling stressed. (Although I still think it's incredibly insensitive and hurtful to say to someone without kids "you don't know what it's like", but that's a blog post for another day...)

Today, though... I'm sitting in bed with a raging headache brought on by yet another night of insomnia, which was partly fuelled by anxiety.  I feel awful and I've taken the day off work.  But here's what was great about this morning - I got up, gave my cat a good morning cuddle, fed her, let her into her daytime play area and then went back to bed and shut my bedroom door.  Yes, I long to have children and it hurts that I don't... but the ability to leave my 'baby' to fend for herself, and know that she can do that perfectly well, is pretty awesome on days like today.


D.M. Cornish said...

You are one spectacular person Swellsy (not that you would know that I think this from the paucity of contact)...and I am sorry for the tiny gene pool of eligible fellows.

Crazy Sister said...

Your trust in following God's plan for your life is evident. Good on you. I'm sorry that parents say brain-dead things to you. I think you'd make a very thoughtful mum. And while there are more ways to contribute to the young generation than having your own kids, you're not dead yet... there's always hope!

And if you think that parents never shut their kids in rooms and go back to bed, think again! Ha ha ha.

Lilly said...

You know somethng, throw your hands up and give it all to God. I can so understand hwo you feel and you know there are many aspects of my life too that I feel I will never fulfill even though I am blessed to have a daughter.

She has friends in the mid to late thirties who feel exactly as you do. I think Femina it is quite common now if you look at the stats.

And there is always hope and just because you may not have any of your own doesnt mean you cannot have them in your life either.

There is hope, always hope. And you do have an adorable little thing who depends on you ever day. That is pretty special too.

Thanks for posting this because many of us feel anxious about all sorts of things. You are authentic and I personally love authentic bloggers.

Dee from Downunder said...

As Lilly said, there is always hope, and they are crying out for foster carers too.. maybe something to consider?
I can't lock my bedroom door...

Hippomanic Jen said...

The not having kids thing can get you sometimes, hey? At least I have a wonderful man (first step, check), but we would like the family as well. It's hard to explain how most of the time that's fine, but then one day it isn't. Sometimes I can work out why, but other times not (and the biological clock keeps ticking on). Glad you could give yourself some space. Glad that you're trusting God. Glad that someone else gets frustrated with the "Oh, but you're so much better off because..." way people have of trying to make it all better.

Praying that God's best and perfect will happens in your life, and that He's with you in whatever happens.

Kathy said...

I just read your friend-non friend post and totally got it...I was thinking that my blog friends feel kind of the same way...CASE IN POINT--if we were freinds in real life, Id be at your house bugging you and praying with you and eating pie and distracting you from what ails you :0 And there to listen when the ails need to come out........

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