Are you kidding me? Is there such a thing? According to my mother, this is unheard of and abolished by the “Latin Book of Rules” which she has yet to produce the Chapter on “Mandatory Motherhood” for all Latina females.
Being the oldest of 2 daughters and to ease my Mother’s anxiety, I bought myself time by proclaiming once married I would consider granting her wish of a grandchild. I was married at age 26, which by her standards was a bit late but nonetheless she felt her dream would finally come true…not.
If I had a dollar for every conversation where she would mention who was pregnant or bring up yet another upcoming baby shower, I would be living in the lap of luxury! To Mom’s dismay the endless subscriptions to baby magazines or the cut out baby picture she strategically placed on top of my pillow didn’t accomplish the task at hand.
During my entire childhood my Mom was a licensed babysitter so I was aware of the hard work, responsibility and dedication it took to raise a child and didn’t feel I was cut out to do the job. As kids my sister beautifully multi-tasked between homework, feedings and diaper changes and loved it. I, on the other hand made myself available only during play time not to exceed more than 30 minutes. OMG that alone was exhausting! Very early on I made a conscience decision that Motherhood did not commingle with my future plans. I wanted to travel and live in a foreign country and having kids would interfere with my goals and dreams.
And then it happened, one of the happiest days of my life. My sister announced she was pregnant! Yahoo…the pressure’s gone! Gracias hermana querida! This glorious event not only made Mom happy, but also gave me the greatest gift ever…a beautiful niece! She’s almost 18 now and I love every minute of being an Aunt. This rent-a-kid deal really works for me! My husband and I enjoy traveling, slumber parties and spoiling her rotten. The more challenging events of parenthood like schooling, discipline and uncomfortable adolescent events are all handled by Mom. Sweet!
I’m nearing 50 and to be truly honest, I have no regrets not having had kids. Through the years I was told by many as I got older eventually I would lament my decision. I would feel unhappy and unsatisfied as a woman by not accomplishing my duty as a female to produce offspring. I say rest assured because I feel fulfilled as a woman, wife and very happy with the person I have become. Having kids does not make you a better person, a better female or assure you a better life.
I must confess it brings me a bit of joy when my friends with children admit feeling a touch of jealousy as they live vicariously through my childless stress-free adventurous life. Oh well, I guess I have no choice but to continue living “la vida loca.”