The past few weeks, my mind and heart have been obsessed with babies. I see pregnant women everywhere. Parenting and children are the center of storyline and plots of the books and magazines I have been reading. Baby, baby, baby, oh baby! I got babies on my mind. However, I have consciously made a decision to NOT have children, for multiple reasons, one being that I am a month shy of 44, and even if I did have a baby, through adoption or by giving birth, I would be of retirement age when s/he was in college. Not for me, perhaps for some.
My partner and I decided that if we had met ten years ago, things would be different. But in the five years we have been together, it is only in very recent history that we could even realistically ponder the question. Frankly,it just seems too late to even try (my partner is six years longer down the journey of life than I am). In spite of all the clarity, and feeling good about our decision, it is still hard for me. Especially in my perimenopausal state of mind.
I honestly never really thought that I wouldn't have a baby...or that I would choose NOT to have a child...come to think of it, I have never even conceived through, oh, say, an accident. I often wonder what it would feel like to be pregnant...to actually give birth...and what my little girl or boy might have looked like. I am a TLC Baby Story nut. I cry every time a loving couple gives birth.
I love birth.
The truth is I love babies...and I love children. I am blessed to be in ministry with children and families, and to have many friends with delightful children in whom I celebrate and cherish.
The truth is, I could really be an awful parent...I can be pretty self-absorbed.
The truth is, having a child has not been a priority for me, and I certainly have a full life without children.
The truth is, it is the right decision for us.
The truth is, I still wonder if....
The truth is, it makes me a little sad sometimes...missing out on being a mom, missing out on that part of life....with all its challenges, heartaches, frustrations, and wonderments.
I think I need a ritual...to connect my mind and heart and body to the reality of the good and wise decision of my spouse and I. To simply be able to let go any residual longings I have...to let go of my baby thoughts, and channel that loving energy somewhere else.
So...what about this? Am I alone in my mid-life crisis, non-motherhood status? What do other people do, when they find themselves where I find myself today?