It’s not that I don’t want a baby. Or that I (100 percent) do, at least not right now anyway. It’s that I feel stuck in the middle. Some days, I love daydreaming with my husband about what our future-family might be like. And yet other days I simply cannot imagine what it would be like to be the primary caregiver of another human. Especially since I can barely keep the few plants we have alive.
So, in all seriousness, how do you decide whether to have kids? And if you do decide to embark down the path of parenthood, how do you know when you’re ready?
As a lifelong worrier and self-proclaimed over-thinker, I oftentimes worry that my hesitations are a sign. So many people, such as my younger sister, know that they want kids. Other women I’ve spoken to about this very subject described a deep-down urge they felt when wanting to get pregnant. I’ve never had this urge. No tingling sensation, no baby fever, nada. Why have I never had this urge? Should I be concerned that I’ve never had these maternal twinges and ticks? Are these necessary prerequisites? Will these desires develop with age?
Like I said, I tend to overthink, a lot. But then again, deciding when (and if) to have kids is a huge life decision, and in my opinion, one that should not be taken lightly. I don’t want to procreate just so I won’t eventually regret not procreating. Yet, I also don’t want to rush into parenting if I’m not entirely ready either. Will I ever be? Is anyone ever wholeheartedly ready?
I’ll admit, a good chunk of my reluctance, I think, stems from fear. I’m scared of what it will be like to give up my current child-free freedom. I’m scared of how parenting might affect my relationship with my husband. I’m scared of how parenting might affect me, as an individual, and how it will affect my career. These might sound like selfish thoughts, but I’d be lying if I said they didn’t swim through my mind.
There’s also the fear of finally feeling ready to have a baby only to find out that, for some reason or another, I can’t have a baby. I know many of us have that fear. Because I’ve always had irregular periods, part of me wonders if deep down my mind is trying to protect my heart from that fact by masking it with all these hesitations. (See what I mean about overthinking?)
All this being said, I’d love to now turn it over to you. If you have children, how did you know you were ready? When did you know? Did you ever experience baby fever? And if you don’t have kids, are you hoping/planning to one day have them? Or have you made the decision not to have kids? I’d love to get your insight on this very personal topic.
BY Kathryn - March 25, 2019
Thank you for being here. For being open to enjoying life’s simple pleasures and looking inward to understand yourself, your neighbors, and your fellow humans! I’m looking forward to chatting with you.