[**FYI: Writing this blog post while watching “What to Expect When You’re Expecting”]
How can I love these answers…let me count the ways…a ticking clock that gets louder as you get older, chapped nipples, discussion about whether or not to circumcise your child’s penis (just DO it already!), crying whenever, not trying to base a happy, healthy, and functioning relationship around raising children. I could go on for hours. The point is, when you make the choice NOT to reproduce, you’re saving yourself…
2) Possible disappointments (miscarriage, inability to reproduce, IVF fails, birth defects, complications during childbirth, risking mother and child’s life, possible stillborn, navigating the ever-changing and difficult adoption systems, etc.),
4) Children turning into evil teenagers,
5) Horrible bodily changes, both temporary and permanent,
6) Random strangers trying to touch your belly…all the time, and
7) Literally a million other problems and issues.
I want to be perfectly clear about my personal situation. I have an autoimmune disease which will either risk my child’s and my health, or cause me to miscarry repeatedly, on or off meds that suppress my immune system. I am at infusion level illness (cancer-level drugs), which is not great. My body has stretch marks from steroid weight gain in places I did not expect, cellulite from the same issues. My body has been ravaged by disease rather than the “joy” of having a child. I’ve also experienced severe mood swings because of my body and medications so the “joy” of pregnancy escapes me personally.
There is no judgment here at Notamomma, so for mothers, mothers-to-be, and aspiring mothers, no offense, but pregnancy isn’t the only thing that ruins your body. You wanted a baby, you got the side effects so please, stfu about it. Some of us didn’t ask for our body to be put through the ringer by disease, cancer, and other illnesses.
ANYTHING! Without a child, the world is your oyster! Travel, throw a dinner party, get as many tattoos as you want in foreign lands, spend time with children…(who don’t belong to you! I recommend those toddler years, they’re so much fun!), challenge yourself to be a better person everyday, volunteer, commit to a cause, MAKE yourself a place at the table!
I have to credit a college professor in my undergrad years who made it very clear that you are no one in the grand scheme of the world until you make yourself someone and, when you do, you can MAKE yourself a spot at the table. No one owes you a damn thing so go out into the world and BECOME someone who matters. Somewhere. Find a niche. Find a cause. Find a career. Find a calling. Babies are not the only way to leave a legacy. You can be and do anything you set your mind to!
So, here are some ways to decide what YOU want to expect from life:
Am I saying that people with kids can’t do these things? No. If they have money (and a live-in nanny, perhaps). And, here’s my warning to you stay-at-home moms, cover your ass in your pre-nup because, despite your level of education, you’ll be fucked without spousal support until you can at least get back on your feet to support your children, assuming that you will get custody.
Enjoy life without children, whether it’s by choice or without the ability. Eventually, you will come to terms with things-I’m not saying that you’ll never cry about it or think about it again, but feel joyful about those in your life that you can be a true role model to, even when you’re not looking. You can be angry with God, He can handle it, but I believe in His plan. It’s OK not to have kids. You might have to change your plans, your expectations, your life, but, we’re here for you. There’s an entire community here for you.
**All pics come from FreePik and Title Pic was designed using Canva and FreePik.