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Thoughts on Becoming a Parent…

Thoughts on becoming a parent, from someone who is not a parent yet, but wants wants to be for reasons I can’t explain:

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I’m not a parent. I know nothing about parenting. I do subscribe to several “mommy blogs.” I guess I like to learn what moms and dads are dealing with and imagine what kind of mother I will be one day. Well, I hope I will be a mother one day. You never know what your life will really turn out to be. On the one hand, that is a good thing. On the other, that’s scary.

I think the urge to want to be a mom is very interesting. It’s pretty much decreed that being a parent is the hardest thing you’ll do in life. And yet so many jump right into that difficulty, or want to, or try to but can’t. And it’s also said, so often, that it’s the best thing in life. Nothing compares. You are forever changed.

When I think of having kids, my thoughts often go back to when I was younger. When you first really understood the consequences and relationships between sex, birth control, STDs, pregnancy, and all the scary things they wrapped up together to discourage young people from having kids too soon. And I guess fear is a good tactic, even though it doesn’t always work. We do need the education even if they do scare us, too.

But then, they are also painting a picture of becoming a parent as something that will ruin your life. Of course, having a kid in high school is not a good idea for your own future or the baby’s future. Of course it’s not easy to have a kid and keep going to school and get further education. But when you are at an appropriate age to be a parent, you still have big life responsibilities in addition to THE parenting responsibility. I rambling now, but I wonder: When are you ready to be parent? I know you’re never really ready, but ready in the sense of it being acceptable and appropriate to make that decision to be responsible for another human life. I know there is no right answer for everyone. How much money should be saved up? What kind of home do you have to bring them home to? How mature are you? How much will you be working: too much, too little? What do you have to teach them? I don’t know the answers to these questions. How much money/maturity/education is enough?

Some people get married and then they get nagged about when they’re going to “start a family.” So when are you going to have a baby? When am I going to be a grandma? When am I going to be an aunt/uncle/etc.? I’ve gotten this type of question maybe twice. I can’t say I want to be nagged, but it would feel good to have my closest family excited about me having a baby one day. My mom especially has not pushed for a baby, not because she doesn’t want me to have any, but I believe because she knows our financial situation and knows we are not ready in that way. I know this a mature and logical response for her to have. But, sometimes I wish I could see her excited at the thought of me making her a grandparent. Maybe one day.

I’m not an outwardly emotional person at all. I rarely cry, especially in front of others. Some people just wear their heart on their sleeve, but I don’t. I do wonder at times if it makes me seem callous or insensitive. But I do feel. When I read those mommy blogs or hear someone talk about those moments unique to parenting, I feel that. My heart aches. Why? Why do I feel like I want to be a mom? What in the world makes me think I could do it and do it well? Some people feel meant for a certain path in life, be it parenting or a certain career or both. I never felt connected strongly to a career. I like my job and it pays the bills, but it’s not my passion. I feel like I could be passionate about being a mom when that time comes. I hope it does.

Anyone else get that yucky jealousy feeling when you see parents and their kids together that makes you want to cry? And then you feel bad for feeling jealous instead of happy for them so you feel even worse? Feel free to share.