I know all about how baby dreams mean that something new is coming into your life and not necessarily a baby. But for someone who wants a baby more than anything else in the world, those dreams are bittersweet.
Take Wednesday night for instance. I had a dream in which I had a rather messed up hospital experience but then at the end of it I had this beautiful boy in my arms. I was totally and utterly in love with the kid within milliseconds. My friend Jill was there, she had her baby in real life this morning (Welcome to the world, Miss Cecilia!), and in the dream I was so excited that my son was born the day before her daughter so that they could be friends. It was a good dream.
Then of course I woke up back in reality where I’m 35.5 years old, single, live with my mom and my grandpa and have no children. Sure, the prospect of something new coming into my life is cool because let’s face it… I could use some new. But damn it, I want a baby.
The one and only thing that I have ever known with 100% certainty is that I want to be a mom. I’ve known this since I was a little kid and over the years it’s never faltered. I am simply one of those people that are just meant to be a parent. Yeah, there are other things I’d like to do with my life, but to me they’re all just extras with the job title of Mama being the number one goal.
Godmother, Aunt, Big Sister, Nanny, Babysitter, Caregiver, Social Worker, Child Support Group Leader… I’ve done them all. My nickname among friends for years has been “Mama Kel” because I always fall into the role of the mom making sure that everyone is okay. It’s just who I am. What I do.
There were a whole lot of reasons why I burnt out in my case worker job, but to be honest, one of them was because it was so frustrating to work with people who had children that they didn’t want, didn’t deserve, didn’t love, and/or didn’t appreciate. No, not all of my clients were awful… some were really great parents who just needed help and I was glad to provide that help to them. But the ones who couldn’t see what was wrong with abusing or neglecting their children and would make excuses for it are the ones that got to me. The people who thought that hitting their children with objects and leaving marks was okay. The girls many years younger than me who were popping out a new kid every couple of years with a different guy and then not making any effort to raise those kids and give them a good home. Those were the ones that got to me. It simply breaks my heart when I see children who are brought into this world and not given a chance at a happy life. I don’t give a rats ass if you were hit as a kid and you think you “grew up just fine,” there is never EVER a reason to pick up an object and hit your child (or anyone else for that matter) with it. Ever.
This isn’t a post about physical discipline though… that’s a whole other issue to cover some other time. This is about the fact that my heart and soul aches to love a child of my own and just be a good mom. Yeah, I’ll make mistakes… everyone does. I don’t want to be Super Mom, I just want to be Mom.
I’m told by younger women quite often how they’re running out of time to have kids and I sit there thinking, “Well thanks… that sure makes me feel better since I’m older than you.” Then people with kids think it’s a great idea to say to me how lucky I am that I have my freedom because I don’t have kids. Yeah, it’s not a great idea to tell me that. In fact, it’s a horrible idea. You don’t tell someone who wants children more than anything that they’re lucky that they don’t have kids. It’s the biggest slap in the face you could give them. You’re essentially saying, “You’re so lucky that you don’t have the one thing you want most in life even though I have it myself!” Seriously?
I’ve always said that even if I had to do it alone, I’d be a mom some day. I really don’t want to do it alone. Of course I’d love to be in love with someone and share parenthood with them. At this point though, I’m starting to think that doing it alone might be what I end up doing. It’s true, I am on the older side of the spectrum when it comes to having a biological child. Plus with all of my crazy mystery illnesses I often wonder if being knocked up would just cause my body to revolt. Of course I want to be pregnant and experience everything that comes with it, good and bad. I want a baby who looks like me and has my crazy curly hair… But that’s not by any means to say that I couldn’t love a baby who I didn’t give birth to who needs a Mama.
Here’s the problem though. As a single person my options are kind of limited. There’s artificial insemination, adoption, and then there’s the option of taking a page out of the Heart songbook and finding some random dude for the whole “All I wanna do is make love to you…” thing.
Artificial insemination is great but expensive. Local adoption is cool but can take years (especially being a single person) and the social worker in me is terrified by stories I’ve heard of bio parents trying to come back into the picture and take the child away. Overseas adoption would be awesome but again is mega expensive. I don’t think my local credit union will give me a loan to adopt a child or to get knocked up, do you? Which leaves a romp in the hay with some guy which could be fun, but it’s not exactly safe or practical. It is however, free.
Of course being a foster parent is also an option but honestly, I don’t know if I could do it. I’m a Cancer, we fall in love really fast. I don’t think I could have a child in my home and fall in love then have to send it back to its bio parents. Yeah, I get the idea of being a stable loving home for the child while they’re in need… but I honestly think my heart would break into a million pieces every time I had to let one go back home. And well, let’s face it… that would send my clinical depression into a serious tailspin and yeah… not exactly the best idea.
So what do I do? People tell me, “Stop thinking about it, that’s when it’ll happen!” As great as that would be, I can’t help but think that I’ll do that and then I’ll still find myself still single, without kids, and too old to have them naturally. Maybe that’s a little Negative Nancy-like but it’s very possible. I don’t want to wake up some day and feel like it’s “too late” for me to be a mom.
Maybe I should go buy a Mega Millions ticket before the deadline tonight. 🙂 Then I could afford to adopt overseas, quit this craptactular job and be a stay at home mom, right?
I know I’ll make it happen… I’m just not sure how yet. 🙂