Women are magnificent creatures. They give you life, bathe you, teach you, discipline you, wash your underwear, kiss your boo-boos, answer most of your questions and make sure your dad gets the abridged version when you get caught being naughty. However, your existence alone does not define your mother as a person.
It doesn’t matter where you live or what type of home you were raised in. The beauty of being an adult woman in the Western World is choosing your own path to the crypt. A couple of days ago, I read this article (h/t Allah Pundit), about a young lady living in New York that doesn’t want children. Do women, like this author, really lack the mom-gene or are they just successful, stylish women threatened by the idea of kids in their seemingly hip and uncomplicated lives?
When I was a little girl, there was a lady at my mom’s office named Penny. She was the only daughter of the company’s CEO. She was a beautiful, elegant, ageless thirtysomething with impeccable taste. Penny had been married and divorced, she was somewhat career oriented, but I could tell she was looking for another husband. Penny did not have any, nor did she want any children of her own, which was very good news for me. I was the beneficiary of all of her unwanted jewelry, handbags, scarves, perfume and makeup. Penny introduced me to Saks and Neimans, taught me about the importance of ordering a salad with the dressing on the side and took me to my first play at Ford’s Theater. I never wondered why she didn’t have kids. The last time I saw Penny was in 1999, at my father’s funeral. It had been over a decade since our previous visit, but I recognized her right away. She hugged me tightly as she offered her condolences; I wondered then if she regretted her decision to never be called ‘Mom’. I hope not.
Like Penny, that young New Yorker may never have children, but she’ll likely have other things that complicate her life, I hope those things are as fulfilling as the joys of a child. Resentment is a bitch and contrary to what some may think motherhood is not where fabulous women go to die.
If you know my story, maybe you’re wondering if I would go back and let’s just say…do things differently. The short answer is no. I am not someone who looks back and wonders what if. While, of course I have things that I wish I hadn’t done and people that I wish I hadn’t hurt, there isn’t a moment that I would ‘do-over’. Every gut busting laugh, every painful memory, every what the hell was I thinking (never mind I wasn’t) moment…all mine, located on a special place along my timeline…all parts of the person I am today…and I like her, a lot.