I Never Wanted Kids — And Now Iâ€™m Having One
It was the fall of my first year of college when I showed up at my GYNâ€™s office for a routine PAP.
â€œMind if my med school intern joins us for your exam?â€
â€œNot at all!â€ I chirped, glad to be helping another person with their educational path, even as I started my own.
â€œWhyy Hallo they-ur, yew muhst be Lee-ah!â€ The drawl caught me off guard,Â as I live in New England.
â€œNay-o ahm just gonna take yer bloodâ€¦â€ I squirmed, and began to sing old MacDonald. Something I have done since I was three because needles and blood and that rubber band thing freak me out. I started on pigs and moved on to horses and cows.
â€œE, I, E, I, O!â€ I crowed.
â€œWell nay-o, yew are just gunna have to lurn to deal with blood, silly, what are yew gunna do when yew have lil babies?â€
I was instantly furious.
â€œGet her out.â€
It continued in various humiliations over the years: assumptions about when I would graduate leading to random friends giving me advice on timing childbirth. Even magazines, books and TV series indicating in one not-so-subtle-form or another that hey, the clock was a tickinâ€™ and I had better make the best of my fertile years. Whatever.
Thing was, I never liked babies. They were loud, delicate and sticky. They needed things, indecipherable things and they smelled like poo. No thanks. They were not interested in the same things as I (cocktails) and seemed very irrelevant to me.
Last April, I was shocked to read a double line on my First Response, the first one I ever even felt the impetus to take. I looked up into my bathroom mirror and said, clear as day, all alone, â€œOh. Holy. Shit.â€
And I suddenly wanted to have a baby. After 26 years of NEVER wanting kids.
Disclaimer to this article: donâ€™t use it to tell women of any age â€œthey will come aroundâ€ or â€œthings will change– youâ€™ll seeâ€ (insert condescending chuckle here) because thatâ€™s some serious bullshit, and none of it is true. The only reason that it became the truth for me, was, in short, because of what I like to refer to as the â€œsolar eclipseâ€ rarity of circumstance under which I felt comfortable and indeed confident enough to procreate. Here is my list:
- I wanted an advanced degree completed
- I wanted to be married to the father of the child
- The man in question had to be DAMN impressive
- I needed to own a home in a decent school district
- I needed to know, beyond a doubt that working would not be required of me. If I wanted to be a SAHM, I could and if I wanted to be a working mother, I could. It was a matter of choice.
This was my list. With my masters degree completed and the babyâ€™s father being incredible. I only had to have a few targeted conversations to determine if this was going to work out. Everything did.