Saturday, April 29, 2006

Is it supposed to make sense?

So, we decided to have a baby. In a tea shop in Kamloops where we stole away for a few days in the middle of winter, we had one of those rare and beautiful talks where everything aligns and we just “got” each other. And after we decided, everything just felt peaceful and perfect. I had a moment where I started to worry about money, and he just reached across the table and said how he knew everything would work out now that we had decided.

Now, I don’t mean to say I’m off the pill or we’re madly copulating or any of those slightly necessary things that couples tend to do when they want to conceive a child. I said "we decided", not that we started. This is how it is these days, you know. Some people are too busy to allow for accidents or nature or God. Some people plan. So, yes, we plan a future where we will be off of birth control and open to baby-making! But in the meantime, while we are both working full time and doing our masters, there are not enough minutes to make babies, much less to parent them.

And as I think about it, I find myself confused as to how there will ever be enough minutes. Praise this country and its year of parental leave for caregivers of newborns, but what happens after one year? Am I the only one to question how you go from a dual-income family, add another person and then bring in less income? Am I the only one who notices that school gets out at 3:00pm but work doesn’t until 5:00pm for most parents? Am I the only one who thinks that doesn't make sense to have a child and then leave them in the care of others and then go to work so I can make money to pay for the care of others? Or alternatively, leave the workforce, risk my career and sacrifice 1/2 our household income?

Really, it makes very little sense at all to want to bring children into the world. To give up this freedom and selfishness to become a slave to ten pounds of screaming? To worry about how every word and action you say to this little human being will affect their development? To trade in your cool car for a mini-van and your favourite shows for Teletubbies?

But I can’t seem to ignore this ringing inside of me every time I see a baby, which feels like its been going for two years. And everywhere I go, the bellies are mocking me. Pregnant happy women in the grocery store, the mall, the bus station, the movie theatre, the pet store, and everywhere else I happen to look. I can’t be crazy wanting to do this, or else we are all crazy.

Perhaps the proclivity of our species is something ingrained in us before we came to being. So, maybe we are wired biologically to want this despite our better judgment. And maybe that’s why we're excited, after being scared and skeptical for so long. And maybe all that other stuff won't matter when the little one is here. I guess we'll see...

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