Skip to content

How a lovely relationship has closed my womb

May 31, 2011

It’s always been a given that I want to have kids.  That is, until I came into a loving, healthy, fun, stable, invigorating, hilarious relationship.

My interest in and experience with tykes began for not the most noble reason — as a freshman in high school, I needed ten hours of community service to become a member of the National Honor Society and was looking for a quick way to fulfill the requirement [my life was very busy with watching A Different World and ashamedly shopping at Lane Bryant; not a lot of time to spare].  The flyer read – “Do arts ‘n crafts with kids in an afterschool program Wednesdays.”  Cutting and pasting for a couple of hours didn’t seem daunting, and so that’s how I found myself on a school bus from Evanston to Cabrini Green.

After my ten hours, I kept returning.  My interest in public housing and all-issues inner-city was piqued, the immediate love and rockstar status the kids anointed me every week was intoxicating.  A year later, I was coordinator of the program.  That plus my standing Saturday night babysitting job for two kids, both until graduation, cemented children into my formative years.

While in college, I mentored a teen, created a pen-pal program between my freshman residents when I was an RA and kids who lived in public housing, was a summer camp counselor, and interned at Teen Voices Magazine.  Post college, I coordinated a Saturday morning volunteer program at an Englewood elementary school for five years, taught and continue to teach digital media to hundreds of Chicago Public School students in under-resourced neighborhoods, and continue relationships with various kids I’ve met over the years.

All this is to say, other people’s kids have been a constant in my life and I knew that one day, I’d complement [replace?] your kids with those from my own loins.

Over the year and half that I’ve been dating Boyfriend, of course I’ve done the obligatory girl-thing, where you write your first name and his last name, where you envision what type of food on a stick you’ll have at your wedding, where you conjure up images of the results of a DNA-smushing, where you think “Wow, Boyfriend will be such a good dad!”…

But weirdly, as we’ve gotten more serious, my urge to procreate has lessened.  To the point now where I don’t know if I want to have kids.

We bike thirty-five miles to Three Floyds Brewery in Munster, Indiana.  We Trader Joe’s at 9:30PM.  We go on two-week European vacations where we fly by the seat of our pants, pack light, and eat street food.  We go to late-night improv shows.  We do bar trivia.  We get to Millennium Park hours early to get good seats for Iron & Wine.  We have a GoogleDoc of eateries we want to try, many of which are bars/pubs, none of which are Chucky Cheese.  We cringe when we see large families or tiny-beings within a year or two of each other.  We already have to schedule get-togethers weeks/months down the line.  We have dreams of European bike trips, more professional collaboration [do you need someone to lead your office in team-building/improv activities?!?  Contact me!] and the creation of Boyfriend/Girlfriend LLC.

I don’t want to spend my money on diaper-genies and jars filled with mashed peas.  I don’t want to spend my time car-pooling other people’s critters, baking for school fundraisers, or devising discipline scenarios.  I don’t want our conversations to revolve around sitters, field trips, tap class, and report cards.  I like an empty backseat that we can fill with doughnuts or six-packs or bike accessories.  I like that we can leave for an outing carrying nothing but keys and a wallet.  I like that we don’t fight.

I’m sure there are parents who answer questions about the ’80s at Riverview Tavern on random Tuesday nights, who talk about TV shows that aren’t brought to you by the Letter R, and who have tons of energy and are always up for whatever.  It just seems few and far between.

For now at least, I choose spontaneity, light backpacks, and 3AM Golden Nugget pancakes.

Advertisements
3 Comments leave one →
  1. August 30, 2012 10:34 PM

    Been married 17 years now without children, because when we were dating we felt like you. We’ve never changed our minds or regretted it, despite the assurances of many well-meaning busybodies that we would. If anything our relief at being able to have time, money, disposable income, and low-stress, quiet lives have deepened over the years.

    If you have childfree instincts and the courage to trust your instincts, don’t let anyone change your mind!

  2. June 29, 2011 12:15 PM

    Being a parent is a 24/7 job, and I supposes it’s only natural to want things to stay the same when they are going good but you have to remember even if you don’t have kid(s) that the only constant in life is change.

  3. June 6, 2011 12:13 AM

    i want to hear more about this food on a stick. is that really happening? and, if so, can that food be vegetable free? or, at the very least, will there be concessions made for others at the event who share boyfriend’s last name? there are those with boyfriend’s last name, for example, who leer suspiciously at europe, who are gutturally frightened of food at three a.m., and who yell really obscene and blasphemous things at people who ride bikes on the sidewalk when he’s trying to take his after-dinner walk (which normally happens around 5:30 p.m.). for people like that, can there be jelly beans on a stick? or better yet, snickers bars interspersed with jelly beans on said stick? and free cigarettes? and an open bar? and an open bar not just with the fancy yankee beer, but with bud light or milwaukee’s best in cans? and now that i think about it, i would also like one of those bouncy houses so i can play while the boring shit is going on. and, by “i,” of course, i really mean those others who share boyfriend’s last name. and also i think a karaoke machine loaded with songs about dead dogs. and also some of those after dinner mints that kind of melt in your mouth. you know those? yes, let’s have plenty of those.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: