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.