Children. To have or not to have.
When I was a girl, I always said that if I ever had them, it would be a case of ‘have them early and live later, or have them later and live first’
Now, while some of you will argue that children are an important part OF living, or that life cannot be lived fully until you know the joy of having ‘mini-me’s’ around your feet, it is not really a point open for argument. It was just how I saw life as it lay ahead.
I grew up fast, living with just my widowed Father and Brother, and learned to fend for myself. I partied a lot, learned a lot of life lessons, experienced both joy and heartbreak many times over, but never did find that right person that made me want to settle down and start a new life, other than the single one I was living.
Now I am at the point where, having them early, is no longer an option, I have found my ‘Mr Right’ (Chili) and we are left with the decision of whether to have them at all.
When I skipped down that aisle nearly 4 years ago and entered into the contract of ’til death do us part’ we were asked the obligatory “So when are you having children?” no more than a second after the “I do’s” were exchanged.
A few years down the track, and we are getting mixed replies from friends and family. some say we should, some say we shouldn’t (throat-cutting gesture inserted here), some say they didn’t ever think we would. I am inclined to agree with the latter.
Here are my reasons and the thoughts that justify them to me. While some may say selfish, I believe they are sound.
No.1: I am NOT a morning person. Some of my friends can put a hand on the Bible and swear to this whole-heartedly. If I am woken premature to my alarm, it has been likened to the very same reaction of a cranky bear roused from mid-Winter hibernation, claws and teeth included. I suffer from insomnia as it is, imagine my morning mood intensified ten-fold after being woken constantly by a baby at irregular intervals during that night?
No.2: I like my freedom. I ride motorcycles, drive old cars, run my own business, foster dogs, dance around the house to loud music in my underwear, answer my phone when it suits me, make my own appointments and generally do things when it suits me. It is an important part of who I am.
No.3: Travel. I have seen nowhere near enough of the world at 35, that I want to. I want to go back to the U.S, England, Scotland, Ireland, Hawaii, the rest of Australia and wherever else plans take us in the future.
No.4: Did I mention I am NOT a morning person? Just making sure.
No.5: I cannot relate. While some people see a baby and turn to mush or can start a conversation with a child, I am not one of those people. Children make a little uncomfortable to be honest. I don’t know how to treat them, what to say to them and it is not correct in this day and age, to touch them. They scream, make noise, ignore authority and just annoy me generally. Not all, but most.
These are the important ones to me. And while you can surely still travel with a babe in arms, run a business for the most part and work a child into a sleep routine, I don’t WANT to.
Sound selfish? I definitely think it will to some, but not to me. What I think would be worse, is bringing a child into the world, just because it is the ‘thing to do’. You know the drill, find someone, get married, have kids-picket fence blah blah.
I feel that if you want to have a baby, you just know. It is a built in maternal instinct thing, but I have no burning desire to have a child, no sense of incompletion would stir if life were to roll along the way it is, nappy-less.
As my husband and I discussed all of these reasons at length, we realised something even more important than any of the reasons we shouldn’t have a child. We couldn’t find too many reasons we should have one.
Perhaps only to prove to the world, that a child can still be raised to be a decent respectful human being in this day and age (but that’s another Blog altogether) is a good one, but I need more than that.
If I do something, I need to be fully invested in it, and I’m not feeling it.
Now, I don’t want judgement, but I am curious to what you all think. Do you have kids? Was it ‘the best thing that ever happened’ to you or if you had it all to do over, would things be different?