05 January 2011

decisions, choices, roads travelled

Lately I have noticed that children keep catching my attention. Unconsciously I am drawn to taking in the antics of children. Maybe this is my so-called biological clock kicking in, because there are cute little people coming out of the wood work. I never knew so many existed.

Case in point, a little boy about four years old was having an early dinner with his mom at Costco this afternoon. While I munched on my churro, I was enamored watching him and all his fascination with the world, particularly the soda vending machine. From the looks his mother was giving me, I am positive she believed I was planning his abduction.

The realization that I am 36 has hit hard. Sure, women have babies well into their 40s. But there is this little nagging part of me that realizes the die is cast and I don't quite know how I feel about it; I suppose it is that small pang of regret that is bothering me.

My choices have led me here. But I love my life. As I talk out of both sides of my mouth, I truly do believe I lead a charmed existence and enjoy so very much each and every experience I am presented with. A great career, the ability to travel, to be flexible (for the most part, uprooting dogs and such) to go where the wind blows me. I totally know I could not go buy an arm-load of dresses or head off to exotic foreign lands if I had a child. I love my freedom. I don't know that I could not surrender that vital part of myself.

But then I wonder at what point is the dress shopping going to get old. Will Super Dad be my equivalent of Carrie's Mr. Big and we'll be enough for each other? I did enjoy playing Easter Bunny for Montana Man's children. Therein lies the catch-22. I don't want to be a single mother either. While sounding utterly pathetic, I have a difficult enough time being a "single parent" to a 55 pound accident-prone dog that I could not imagine dealing with the demands of a child. Maybe that right there is my answer.

Nothing is perfect though. Some of my married-with-children friends envy my freedom. The grass isn't greener on either side of our fences; it is simply a different length. I just don't want to wake up one day and wish I had gone left instead of right at the fork in the road.

1 comment:

Fiona said...

The road I travelled has left me with regrets and still a pang deep inside me when I have the fortune to spend time with my friends' youngsters.

But I still enjoy the moment when I can walk away to my less complicated life.

It is such a complex feeling and I guess my only comment to you is, don't leave the final decision until it's made for you with the passage of time, Patsy.

I've had to settle with the role of kick-ass auntie instead of maybe not so kick-ass mum :)