I'm not sure if I ever blogged about the experience that changed my view on becoming a parent, so I will today.
When I was a kid (let's say 10-15) I didn't want to get married and I didn't want to have any kids. I was adament about both. Everyone said I would change my mind. I told them that I wouldn't and I gave my reasons:
- I didn't want to answer to any man.
- I wanted my own life.
- I didn't want to cook and clean for a man.
- Kids came with marriage so I just wouldn't have any of those, either.
- I baby-sat so much that I knew how bratty kids could be and I didn't want to deal with it.
- I didn't want stretch marks and the pain of labor.
There were some deeper rooted reasons for these feelings that I didn't really realize at the time. Time and maturity and learning a bit about human behavior helped me come to terms with such things.
- I had some bad experiences with a man when I was young and the thought of a man touching me made me sick to my stomach.
- I actually never thought anyone would want to marry me.
- We live in a pretty messed up world sometimes and the thought of bringing a child into said world really scared me. I didn't think I was equipped to keep a child safe from all the bad.
- I could never picture myself being a mother let alone a wife to someone.
Not very sound reasons, but to a child with a young mind, it made perfect sense to me.
I was 16 and my step-mom had a friend that I baby-sat for on a pretty regular basis. She was definitely the definition of Fertile Myrtle. They had 3 kids and were expecting their 4th. I was asked to be the person that would stay home with the 3 when it was time for the 4th to join the family. Their first child was a special needs boy of 5 or 6. Their second child was a girl that was 4 (I think) and their 3rd child was a girl that was just over 2. The call came in the middle of the night. I went over to their house and they were on their way out. The youngest girl had trouble sleeping so I went into her room. She was very upset and had cried herself into a mess. I sat on her bed and then it happened. She put her arms around me and laid her head on my chest and began to settle down. I rocked her until her breathing steadied and she calmed down enough to lay back down.
The moment she put her little head on my chest my heart swelled and I knew that I wanted to be a mother. I wanted my child to find comfort in me that way. It felt kind of like the Grinch when his heart grows...I realized how great that feeling was and I wanted more of it. I saw her as a child in need that turned to me for comforting and not just a kid I baby-sit. It was eye opening to say the least.
Of course, I still never thought I'd get married. I also never told anyone about that experience. I couldn't let them know that I had changed my mind....I was a teenager and adults were never right. :-) It was that moment about 19 years ago that my heart began wanting a child. It would take quite a few more years to really head down that path but that's just because I was young and not sure I was ready for a child just yet. I've been ready for 10 years now and I hope that this IVF works and I get to realize my dream.