My best friend gave birth to beautiful twin boys a month ago. And this has made me really look at the way I view motherhood, friendship with women, and my own fertility choices.
I’ve never really given much thought to having children. It was just never something I was interested in. And honestly I don’t really like children (I know, I know that sounds horrible but have you been to Ikea on a Saturday? Haunting). And up until I turned 25 I thought the whole ‘biological clock ticking’ was some patriarchal construct to scare young women into having babies.
But it’s not, and over the past three years I’ve been really starting to reconsider my stance on shrugging off having a family. And it’s put me in a tail spin.
Growing up I always idolized my uncles. They left our small town, went to university, got amazing careers (one pilot, one engineer), lived in beautiful condos, and went travelling the world. They always drove new flashy cars and never had children. Very early on I wanted that life and not the one my mother had, which seemed filled with pain and sacrifice.
My mother is amazing. She is the most selfless and caring person I have ever known. She gave us everything she had. She stayed in a bad marriage for too long and sacrificed her dreams of going to university to care for my sister and I. My father was absent, abusive, and often gone for long periods of time out of town. Somehow she overcame all that to raise two productive humans. And I just know I am far too selfish to give everything I am to another being.
My friend who recently had the twins is one of the most amazing women I have in my life. We’ve been friends for eight or nine years (I’ve lost track of the time) and she has seen me through the most turbulent and complicated years of my life. The last 10 years since I left home and moved to the big city have been the most formative time in my lifetime.
I struggle with my relationships with other women. Very often they break down in a fog of competiveness, pettiness, politics, miscommunication, and mistrust. And I have been through all these things as well with this friend, but we somehow always manage to find our way back to each other. And I will ashamedly admit that when she told me she was pregnant my first thought was, “How is this going to affect me? How is this going to affect our friendship?” Read more