I’m the type of woman who has always wanted to be a mom, but, at the same time, find the concept incredibly scary. Being responsible for the health and wellbeing of another human seems like a pretty major task, especially when that person begins their life unable to even communicate with you. I grew up as the youngest child in a family of six, so I have very little experience with babies. Older kids, however, aren’t nearly as challenging to me. It comes with the territory of being a 30-year old single woman that most of my friends have kids, and I am surprisingly good at getting along with them. I have this “cool aunt” thing down to a science by now. It’s as if I create a kid-adult liaison where both parties like me. I’m sure that’s because my personality is part kid and part adult. There’s something for everyone to relate to. What they don’t realize is the impact that those kids have on me, the fact that being around such cute innocence makes me a better person, at least temporarily.
It’s no secret to anyone who knows me that I’m a bit of a loose cannon. I don’t like conforming to crowds, following rules, or doing what is expected of me. I like to buck the system, shake things up, and I tend to get in trouble when left unattended for too long. I guess that’s the kid and the rebel in me. But, when I’m around children and I see how they look up to me, I fill those adult shoes naturally and effortlessly. Recently, I went to the fair with a good friend and her two kids, and it reminded me of all the reasons I love children. I love how they want to hold my hand while we walk, the funny and brutally honest things they say, and how the slightest bit of attention means the world to them. I guess, when it comes right down to it, that’s the feeling I’m always chasing…feeling like someone values and appreciates me to that degree and also needs me to be responsible and strong.
I’ve been asked several times in my life why I don’t have kids yet, and if I really do want that. Well, of course I want that life. Beyond that, I need that life. I know myself pretty well, and I know that I will become a better and more responsible person for the rest of my life when I am a mother. It’s not a change I can force on myself while I am alone…it will have to come from necessity. So, I’ve been asked, what’s the hold up? This is 2014; anyone who wants a child can have one. The holdup is that I am very old fashioned and I insist on being married before I go down that road. That’s dumb, right? In this day and age, people don’t get married before they have kids, and men especially don’t want to get married. Why would they, when society tells them it’s not only okay but admirable to live their lives one sexual fling at a time? In my experience, men don’t settle down until the kids happen accidentally. It sucks for me that I’m missing out on life experiences because I’m not willing to go about it like that, but, if maintaining my values means that I die alone, I guess that’s just how the cookie crumbles. I’d like to think that there’s at least one single guy out there who is on the same page as me and I just haven’t met him yet.
In closing, I want to encourage all the parents out there to think about how lucky you are. You may envy my freedom and the fact that my home remains as clutter-free as I leave it, but I would gladly accept the tantrums and clutter knowing that it would replace this feeling of loneliness and lack of purpose.