In my teen and adult years I have succumb to the fact that I don’t believe that I am meant to be married. I have been single now for five years, with a few prospects here and there, but nothing serious. In these single years and even when I was in a “serious” relationship, I always felt like being married with 2.5 kids, the American Dream, wasn’t going to be my future. Part of this is from my feeling that no one will want to put up with me because I am so stubborn and difficult, but most of it comes from this need I feel to be mobile. I’ve always felt like I would not be in one place long enough for the settled life, and that I was destined to travel and always be able to pick up and go. (Now some will argue that that is exactly what is wrong with my generation. Nobody wants to commit.) While I still feel like I will be mobile (in fact I am considering a move in the next year), I am recently feeling a change in the wind. Maybe it is out of an empty lonely place, but lately I’ve had not only the feeling of wanting a boy, but wanting a family. When I was a little girl I so desperately longed for what I saw in the movies, and thought that I would grow up and have a whole herd of children, a dozen I think was my number (no doubt spurred on by the book Cheaper By the Dozen, one of my favorites as a child). As I got older I lost that, but here I am a nice young 22 year old with my whole life ahead of me, and I find myself not wanting to spend it alone.
I’ve been feeling this way since Christmas, when I was home with my family and around all the little and not so little ones. Watching my cousins grow up has been fascinating to me. I can’t believe the same kids that I changed diapers on are now preteens who like Hannah Montana and boys. When I’m home I get a lot of pressure, as many do, in quite a few regards. They want me to lose weight, move home, do my hair and make up everyday (so that I can find a nice boy), get married, have babies, go back to school, move home, visit more, move home, ect. My grandfather is not in good health and has been told if he doesn’t do something about it soon that he will be placed on dialysis. It is my duty as his granddaughter to ever so sweetly try to guilt him into doing the right thing ;). I was curled up on the couch with him watching Transformers, and I said, “Grandpa, so what’s going on with your health? Are you doing what you need to do to fix this problem?” He said, “Oh mijita I’m going try. I’m going to try.” I then said, in a way that only daughters and granddaughters can, “I need you not to try, but to do. One day I may actually get it all together, get married, and have babies, don’t you want to meet my babies?” At that moment I felt then, as I still do, a strong urge towards the husband and babies thing. Then I read this book, Tuesdays with Morrie, which let’s face it I should have read a decade ago, but better late than never. Either way in the book they talk a lot about love and family. I find myself often asking my residents that never got married or had any babies, if they regret it. It never fails that they say that while they lived a full and happy life, they wish that they had someone when they had gotten to where they are now. In the book, Morrie is dying of ALS and it is slowly whithering his body from the bottom up. He says about family in the book…
“Say I was divorced, or living alone, or had no children. This disease–what I’m going through–would be so much harder. I’m not sure that I could do it. Sure, people would come visit, friends associates, but it’s not the same as having someone who will not leave. It’s not the same as having someone whom you know has an eye on you, is watching you the whole time. This part of what a family is about, not just love, but letting others know that there’s someone who is watching out for them…… what I call your ‘spiritual security’…. Nothing else will give you that. Not money. Not fame.”
I know that if I am meant to be alone, then God will make peace in my heart about it, however, I feel a change in the want for my life. I want the “spiritual security”, and I know when my residents speak about regretting not marrying or having children, that is also what they are missing. This life is meant be to be lived with others. And as much as I would like to ignore the fact, I am a woman who’s mechanics say that I should have babies, I mean that’s what I’m made for. Cars are built to be driven, and females are meant to reproduce the species. I can’t. Let me just say as well, pregnancy and childbirth, while they are both miraculous and whatever, I think they are completely disgusting and weird.
All this to say….
1. Read Tuesdays with Morrie. It is a fantastic book, and I snotty cried at the end of it.
2. I think I may seriously be considering a shift in my entire mentality about myself and my future.
3. These next few years, I feel, will be the craziest yet. Hopefully you will join me on the ride.
I am currently reading Finding Mañana, a Memoir of a Cuban Exodus. We will see what life changing thoughts come from this book. 🙂