I am just going to be blunt here for a second, wasting time in your life
S U C K S.
Living by the standards of society, also sucks. I have gone back and forth about EVEN talking about this topic. Because it is taboo. Because it is hard. Because messy is easier left swept under the rug. Because there is fear.
Here. WE. GO!!!
In 2017, at the ripe age of 34, my husband and I said, “I do.” It was beautiful, private, and very much true to our spirit. We had no guests, and I have felt so much guilt for that, but I knew that I couldn’t experience this fully with myself having to fit a mold of wondering what others thought, so we did it our way, and it was US. Now, I will tell you that I have NOT had to hear much from people around us the age-old questions of when we will start a family, probably because we have been together since 2010, and many may have written it off as never happening.
I will also say that any of those opinions are none of my business. The ones about how old I am. The ones about will they or won’t they? The ones about our dog, Joon, being the only “child” we will ever have. This is painful to write. This is harsh to read. This is just plain sucky.
Here is the truth: I don’t know what I want. Some days I think it would be great to have a family and leave behind more than just a piece of who I am and what I am doing in this world. Other days I know life would be so much different with the addition of another human in our world. So, let’s travel BACK to where THIS thinking came from….
2010 was the year that rheumatoid arthritis came crashing into my world. A few months later, in 2011 (January 11th to be exact.), I was prescribed medication that was a chemo-lite drug. I was also told to never get pregnant (which I was not really worried about) because the drug would cause the fetus to be extremely deformed, possibly being born without limbs. These were the words of my rheumatologist, at my first meeting with her. The disease was not explained, the drugs were not explained (other than that warning), and that was it.
I think the message I received that day is that it will NEVER feel safe to have a healthy pregnancy with this disease. My logical side KNOWS this is NOT the truth, but my emotional, tactical, and investigative sides REALLY distrust the idea. And, THAT is still true today.
Actually, as I write this, I am officially celebrating 3 years + 10 days without medication, or 158 WEEKS for anyone keeping track…..and, STILL, I feel like “damaged goods.” I have this underlying worry that the drugs I took for almost 5 years did a number on everything, including any chance that I might have to carry a healthy child. I should have NO fear in this department….all the women in my family have had very healthy pregnancies, but we are where we are.
As I am now on the OTHER side of 35….closer to 40 than I was to 30, and still NO kids, I wonder if it will ever be time to have one….and, if it is, WILL it be possible?
So, I say this with the best intentions and truest of hearts….don’t ever ask a woman WHEN she is going to have kids….because YOU JUST DON’T know the whole story of WHAT they hold deep in their heart. Also, before you assume that someone will NEVER have kids, ask yourself if it is necessary to even go down that thought path…..it’s likely not.
From one married millennial without kids to anyone who happens to read this, I hope if you are battling this struggle yourself, those around you are kind enough to leave well enough alone or listen when you are ready to share your heart on this matter. Plenty of people are great people, some people have kids and treat them like garbage, we all have our own issues to handle….it’s vital that we fix what is going on in our hearts before we worry about anyone else’s timing, choices, or life.