I am a 21 year old female. I fall into a lot of stereotypes. I’m a college student, a daughter, a girlfriend, a friend. I am so many things. But there are also a lot of things that I am not. And from the time I was about 11 years old, I knew that I was not going to be someone who wanted children.
I knew that children bothered me when I saw them at the mall or in the grocery store or anywhere else. They’re messy, loud, often unpredictable, confusing, frustrating… So many things.
I knew that I never wanted to have so much responsibility. I never wanted to make a tiny mistake that could drastically affect the life of a tiny human so easily. What if I was cooking and forgot to turn the pot so that the handle was out of reach of a toddler? (I was literally raised being taught to turn pots and pans that were on the stove to be out of reach and I do it now even though I don’t have children).
But WHAT IF I FORGOT and the child dumped something boiling on them? That’s a horrifying thought but a fair possibility to a new parent.
I felt this way about children all my life. Then about two years ago, I started to notice something. It was almost like I could feel my heart expanding. I found myself not shuddering and avoiding eye contact with children everywhere. I was naturally smiling at them. They were reacting and interacting with me! Voluntarily. And then I discovered that Mychal someday wanted children. This only seemed to feed this feeling I was having. I wouldn’t call it baby fever since I wasn’t wanting a baby, but I was much warmer toward children. Now I love seeing babies and holding them and playing with them whenever I can, they don’t disgust me, and they don’t fill me with fear. Later in life, I may be exhausted but I’d never mind getting out of bed at 1:00am to tend to the cries in the middle of the night.
I think my biggest point with this post is to simply acknowledge that people change, that it’s okay to change whether it’s your look, your opinions, or your values.
I’ve done enough caring for other physically disabled humans to know that I could keep a baby alive and well with no issues but I know my situation well enough to know that a baby isn’t happening any time soon.
Though when that time finally rolls around, you can bet I’ll be hoping and praying for a little boy.