Sunday, October 9, 2011

To Procreate or Not?

Well, here we go. I make the whole thought process public.

My husband and I, a married couple with a stable economic situation, have of course been posed the question many a time, "When with the babies, already?!"

There was a time that we really, really wanted kids. We even hoped a few times that I had, in fact, been knocked up, and were very crestfallen when it turned out that I had not. But we picked ourselves up and got over it and every time started the discussion over again.

Often times, it looked like this:

"There's probably a reason."
"Yeah, maybe it's just not in the cards."
"When it's time, it will happen."
"We should just enjoy the life we have as it is right now."

The last line is exactly what we've been doing. And without the pressure on ourselves to start combining our DNA to make something cute, life has been pretty darned peachy.

We have the feeling a lot of people have, which is that there are probably kids in our future. Or maybe there aren't. (We go back and forth with either scenario and find ourselves pretty at peace with either). And we're at a place where we kind of go back and forth on the pros and the cons of pro creation.

Sometimes things sway us more one way than another. Like other peoples' kids. Hanging out with some really fun kids who are spunky and full of character and active and silly and happy...those kinds of kids get the biological clocks ticking faster.

Then there are the kids who are needy, fussy, high maintenance, spoiled, and impossible to soothe or placate, and those kids pull the batteries right out of an otherwise normally functioning clock all together. What if our kids turn out like that? What if we're the parents that mold needy, fussy, high maintenance children? Then we'd have nobody to blame but ourselves! God save us all!

So let's take a look at what our Pros vs. Cons of having kids are.

Pro: There would be someone to take care of us as we get older.

Con: If our kid doesn't have the means/isn't willing to do that, the idea is wasted and selfish.

Pro: It would be so rewarding to watch someone grow from an infant to an adult.

Con: The world is becoming overpopulated at a frightening rate. Food and water and other resources are quickly becoming slim. Bringing yet another soul into an economically unstable future seems selfish; and it would be heartbreaking to see a child become an adult who had to fight tooth and nail just to get food.

Pro: We believe we have the know-how and resources to raise a resourceful, intelligent, hard working and successful human being who could not only survive that future, but be innovative enough to help other people of that future.

Con: We might also end up raising a surf bum who lives on the beach and spends half his time being stoned. No parent plans on that future for their kid, but it happens.

Pro: We already have siblings who have paved the frontier, whose successes and mistakes we can learn from, who have padded the family with plenty of cousins to get to know, the kid would come into a big family.

Con: We do have some fear of disapproval in our child-rearing methods, criticism, and generally trying to make our own family style rather than standing in the shadows of those who've gone before us.

Pro: Living in Hawaii would save us on clothing needs. Babies here only need a few basics, and overpriced fall and winter clothes that they'd outgrow at lightening speed anyway are not on the necessities list.

Con: Everything in Hawaii is double over-priced and everything else for baby, including diapers, would be astronomical. Add to this that I wouldn't be able to work for some time, and living solely on Isaac's income would be very stressful.

Pro: We're the type who would take baby everywhere. Beaches, and as soon as it could hold its head up, hiking, on runs, etc.

Cons: There would be a limit to other activities. We would have to take turns in the water for things like surfing. We couldn't just toss the boards on the Highlander and head to the beach every time we found out the surf was up.

Pros: We live in the perfect place to get a baby well acquainted with water and the ocean very early.

Cons: With Isaac's job and rest requirements, I would be on my own many nights.

Pros: When he is on call and not flying, he would be around to help and get to know his child more than the average 9-5 dad.

Cons: What about the dogs? We don't want to leave them feeling forgotten and left behind, especially if that causes them to act jealous of the baby.

Pros: We have the opportunity to raise another "dog person" and maybe the dogs would love the baby and be extra protective of the home.

There are of course lots of other things to consider, but I could fill a book with them, and I'd rather not do that.

Ultimately, we're pretty happy being an aunt and an uncle, both right now and potentially forever. If we do have kids, though, I suspect we'd be pretty thrilled about it. We decided to it is best to be happy with what we have, count our blessings, and expect nothing else.

It does, of course, make us feel a little inspired when all of our friends keep popping out cute little people, but perhaps it is best to be happy for them and their blessing and happy that our own lives are filled with blessings we may not be able to take advantage of as parents.

I read an article recently that said that inflammation in a woman's body can prevent pregnancy and cause serial miscarriages. I suspect that may play a big part in why it never happened with the timing was otherwise right. Until my body is fully "de-flamed" (if you will) and I have fully mastered my food allergies, I may not be a fertile person. It seems simple enough that the option to make a baby lies within reach when we're ready.

So, there it is. Everyone can stop asking us about kids now.

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