Yesterday, I was walking through the mall on a ‘self-care’ mission. I was hoping to treat myself to a new outfit to wear to my birthday drinks that night.
As I was walked by the Build-a-Bear workshop, I saw a little blonde girl clutching her mother’s hand. She looked like a mini me – light blonde hair, blue eyes – and there was something in her demeanor that reminded me of myself. Now to preface, I see children out and about all the time, but this time felt different. I didn’t see her and think “Oh, so cute!” or give her a goofy wave like I sometimes do with adorable kids. This time, I felt a pang in my gut. I wanted to be clutching my daughter’s hand. I wanted that relationship.
This fear/sadness raced through my body as I walked passed the small girl and her mom. I worried that it wouldn’t happen for me, that this experience – such a huge, life changing one – would never be mine.
Maybe it’s having just turned 34, when my own mother had me. Or knowing that the clock is officially ticking…and much louder than it was at 29 or 31.
People tell me that I’m in control of this – that I can have kids on my own. Just this week someone asked me if I had a “male best friend” who I could ask to have a child with. (I don’t.) And while I know I could go it alone, that’s not a realistic option for me. I don’t have much money, and truthfully, I still feel like a kid myself.
The hopeful side of me thinks it’s inevitable that I’ll have children. That’s how I’ve always looked at it anyway – that it’s somehow just going to happen. But as the time ticks by, I wonder – “is there more I could be doing?” “have I made the wrong choices in my life to lead me to this point?”
I do feel like I still have a solid 3-5 years to have a child, but I’m nervous. It seems like so much would have to change in my life for me to become a mother. I’d have to meet someone, have a stable career with a solid income, and my mental mindset would have to change so much.
But that’s how life is, I suppose. You’re changing in small ways every day but you don’t realize it, until years later, you look back and see how different you’ve become. Those small changes add up in a huge way.
Leaving the mall yesterday, I walked out into the atypical LA rain storm and tried to let the feelings wash away. I soothed myself with the gentle reminder that the universe has a way of aligning things for us.