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This Sunday is Mother’s Day — a day set aside to show our moms how much we love and appreciate them. As for me, I don’t have any kids of my own that’ll climb into my bed with handmade, construction paper cards. I don’t have a husband that’ll wake up early to make me breakfast (chocolate chip pancakes with strawberries on top, please). It’s just me and my lonesome, left to wonder what it will be like if I ever become a mom… and when that might happen.

Ever since I started this blog, I’ve been quite honest about the fact that I want me some babies! I’m not embarrassed by this fact. And I know full well that it’s not something to bring up when I’m first getting to know a guy — at the risk of becoming “that crazy girl obsessed with babies.” But it is something important to me, so I refuse to ignore it.

Case in point: When I read the online dating profile of a potential suitor, I always check to make sure he wants kids in the future. If he says he doesn’t want children, that’s a huge red flag and, frankly, an immediate no. I refuse to spend my time trying (perhaps in vain) to convince someone to have kids. To that same question, he might also answer maybe, which elicits the same reaction from me — see ya! If he’s “not sure” he wants kids, I don’t want to date him. Why pour myself into a relationship that I know will not lead where I want it to lead?

Am I jumping the gun? Doesn’t he have the right to change his mind? Can’t the idea of kids eventually grow on him?

Not on my watch biological clock.

I want a boyfriend that wants to be a father. I want a man that is excited to have and raise children. I want a husband that wants the same things I want in life.

And then there’s the question of how many.

Since I don’t want to sound like a complete cuckoo bird, I won’t go public with the inordinate amount of kids I want at my age. Let’s put it this way: During my travels, I’ve been tempted to adopt entire orphanages overseas. Much to my parents’ relief, laws and timing just didn’t allow it. But we all have that number. Two kids, three kids, four kids, 27 kids… don’t ask me how we come up with it, but we’ve got it somewhere stashed in the back of our brains.

Guys, more often than not, don’t have such a number. They also haven’t picked the names of their kids or the color of their groomsmen’s ties or the flavor of their wedding cake. Chalk it up to poor planning or simple shortsightedness.

But we women — we’ve got it all figured out, don’t we? At ten years old, we’ve got our entire wedding planned (for me it was a double wedding with my friend, Kim), we’ve chosen the names for our twins (a boy and a girl, in case you’re wondering), and we’ve already selected the first minivan we’ll own (a 1987 Dodge Caravan with fancy wood paneling on the side). (Side note: Thanks to my cousins on Pequest Road in New Jersey, I had an abnormal obsession with minivans as a child.)

But as a single person just looking for love, do I need to concern myself with things like children? Should I preoccupy myself with such far-off dreams? Is there any good that can come out of this, or am I just setting myself up for disappointment?

I trust that God sees my heart. He gave me this desire to have children. And whether or not I have children of my own, I will be someone’s mom. I will speak into someone’s life. Perhaps I already have.

Bottom line: Just because I want to get married does not mean I should settle or give up on my dreams.

So this Sunday, I say Happy Mother’s Day to the future version of me. But not in a creepy way. Not in a Type-A, anal overplanner, Octomom way. Simply in an “I know there are good things in store” kind of way.

Because one day I will be a great mom. And it’s okay to admit that.

~Ruth