It’s funny how influenced I find myself to be when “everyone else” is doing something. I’m almost afraid to write this, but my fear of becoming a mother – earlier than planned – is dwindling rather quickly. And I think it has something to do with the fact that I’m finding myself more and more around pregnant people – mostly woman, that is. They show off their bellies proudly. We poke and prod the invisible human inside. The invisible person kicks back. We look up names on the internet. We marvel at the sheer mystery of how a woman walks around, doing life, with an entirely separate – yet dependent – life inside of her. It’s like thinking about how long forever is. You start to think about it and your brain begins to smoke.
I suppose it should not surprise me, if I am so easily influenced; I’m feeling this strangely familiar, but totally new, craving creeping up in me. It’s like I was made to feel this way, like it was just a matter of time. And for most women, it is. I have this comfortable desire to watch my belly swell, to feel motion inside of it that is not just last night’s pizza, but life, hope, a beautiful spirit with creativity and imagination and joy and pain all mixed together. And I helped give life to this spirit. She will have my eyes and his hair. She will be a great audience like me and make up her mind for good like him. She will speak three languages easily and not quit ballet. She might do all of these or non of these, but it’s all a lovely mystery to even dream of.
Not four months ago, I was a tearful mess that I would get pregnant in the first year and my life would be over. Now, it wouldn’t be so bad if it happened. Who have I become? More myself, I suppose. Just a new season, perhaps. I don’t really know what influenced me. There isn’t a date I can look back to know when the change came. It just did.
Don’t get me wrong. I still want to wait. I want to be the best version of myself that I can offer the little brood of Siders that come along, whether I give birth to them, adopt them, foster them or mother them in any way. I know that once I am a mother, I will be forever changed. Tonight I am the girl with quiet nights with Josh and lots of time to play the piano. I am the girl who eats most of the ice cream in the freezer and stops for fast food more than I want to admit. Once I am mother, she will be gone. On that day, it will be okay. But for now, I will enjoy my freedom. My body ticks with the biological clock, but there is plenty of time for children-joy. I don’t want to miss the newlywed bliss in these next moments with Josh. There is still plenty to be soaked up. And then some.