This blog is far from my normal photoesque type writing, but it has been heavy on my mind and my heart so I wanted to share. I turned 29 this past May and since then everything seems to be all about babies and starting a family. When Jake and I got married last September we agreed to wait at least a year before starting to try and have any babies. We wanted to enjoy being married. Jake had fishing adventures he wanted to pursue, I’m going to the gym 4 days a week at 6am, and also have a very young Wedding Photography business I didn’t want to push to the side or just give up on.
Jake and I where the last set of friends to be married and at the time of our wedding all but one of our friends had or where expecting children. I was and always will be elated for my friends and family and the announcement and birth of their children, but that part was hard for me. I felt like I was “falling behind” and because everyone I knew was pregnant or had little ones running around I felt like we needed to try. So I sat on it for a few weeks and the feelings and thoughts weened. I’m sure I’m not the only person to go through this and I don’t think it’s often talked about. So here’s my version
There’s this thought in our society that you get married, have a baby, raise baby, possibly have another and repeat. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been asked in less than a year of marriage when we are going to have kids, and that a baby after 30 is a geriatric pregnancy and I shouldn’t wait much longer (WHAT?!) Why? Some days I want 5 children and some days I don’t want any, and that should be ok. I shouldn’t be made to feel guilty about maybe not having any children of my own, but it’s happened. And it hurts.
I can write and tell you about all of this because I’m sitting in my photo room, my dogs at my feet listening to The Office for the 500th time. Everyone with kids…I’d bet they’re doing kid things right now, or planning kid things, or thinking about kid things, and that’s ok. I frequently text friends and don’t hear back from them for hours and sometimes days at a time, and that’s ok. Because again, kid things.
I understand children are time, money, and energy suckers and there are some friends I haven’t seen in months, and guess what? It’s ok. Life happens and people get busy and plans get cancelled and changed 100 times.
I was at 30th birthday party recently and everyone I knew had children running around. As moms typically do, they sat and chatted about the stages their kids are at, how old they are, what they’re eating, diaper blow outs, group trips to parks etc. And those thoughts and feelings about falling behind started to creep back in. It all sounded so foreign to me and I felt like an outsider, so I talked about it with a (childless) friend, the urges again weened and the thought for this blog formed.
This season of my life is odd, and that’s ok. So for now, I have time to sit in my office for 4 hours uninterrupted editing wedding photos trying to expand my business. Jake and I can take off for 3 days, semi unplanned and hike for 13 miles. But I know those thoughts and urges will come back and if we think the time is right we might act on it, and maybe not. Life is hard and it shouldn’t be made harder when you feel pressured to do things that aren’t in your plan right now, just because everyone else is.
To everyone with childless friends- If you haven’t left the house in 4 days and want to take a shower, alone, for 15 minutes call your childless friend. I think we can keep them alive for that amount of time. House is a mess and need help cleaning it, call us to. Invite us to the park, we might say no but that doesn’t mean we will and I’m sure we wouldn’t mind chasing your kids around if it means getting to spend some rare time with you. For me it doesn’t matter what we’re doing, I love you and I love your children and if that means I have to come help you with your children to see you for 30 minutes, that’s ok to.
For those constantly asking childless women about children, by all means ask. But be ok when we answer with, maybe next year or maybe never. We can do without all the reasonings as to why we shouldn’t wait. And for the love of everything, be conscious of the fact we might be struggling to conceive.
I don’t know if or when Jake and I will have children of our own, maybe next year, maybe the year after, who knows. We’re happy with that and everyone else should be to. My life at (almost) 30 is just that, mine. I.am.happy, my business is starting to grow, our marriage becomes stronger everyday, and I am childless.
And that’s ok.