Guest post by OMC member Jen Speer, Owner of Sweatnet Seattle
“First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes a baby in a baby carriage.” How many of you sang that tune? I know I sure did, and I took it literally. I had done parts one & two, and when it was time to put the baby in the baby carriage, it wasn’t working out as I’d hoped.
For as long as I could remember I wanted to be a mom. I grew up with two styles of stay at home mothers. First was my mom, and second was my grandmother. They both lived for the household, and I knew that’s what I wanted to do, or so I thought.
MY FIRST BOYFRIEND
When I got to high school, I desperately wanted a boyfriend to travel down the road to marriage and babies. My freshman year, I actually met my first boyfriend. We were together off and on for 8 years. We would be madly in love, fighting, not talking, making up, and so on. Why was our relationship a mirror image of a rollercoaster? It was because of me. Deep down inside, I didn’t want to marry my high school sweetheart and start popping out babies at 21. Coming from a small town of 7000 people, I wanted more. I wanted to explore the world, and I wanted to experience life.
Finally in 2015, I married a guy (who was not my high school sweetheart), and was so excited my life was going in the direction I had “planned”. All of my friends were having babies and I was so excited to start that journey too. We started trying in September of 2016.
For months, I was met with the disappointment of a period. I did everything. I had the ovulation apps, ovulation tests, and handstands after sex (benefits of being a gymnast), and I wasn’t getting pregnant.
RELIEVED I WASN’T PREGNANT
In March of 2017, I decided I needed a break. I went and visited a dear friend in Florida without my husband. It was the first time in months I was content. I was relieved I wasn’t pregnant, and this wasn’t the last time I would feel this way.
Over the course of the next few months, we would be trying, and simultaneously I was hoping I wasn’t pregnant. I felt ashamed and happy at the same time to feel this way but it was the truth.
THE VASECTOMY & STEP PARENTING
Jump to July 2017, I started my divorce which you could read about here, and I quickly fell in love with my now-husband Jeremy. This is when I knew I was never going to have children of my own. Why? For starters, Jeremy had gotten a vasectomy. Yes, I know they can be reversed, but I don’t want him to do that.
When Jeremy and I got together, I instantly became a step-mom to a 2 and 5 yo (now 5 and 8). We have majority custody so I’ve basically raised them with him. I’ve been barfed on, peed on, pooped on, cried on, and laugh farted on. I think it’s a parent’s right of passage to have small human fluids end up all over you.
Being a step-mom to my husband’s children, and a fur mom is what I love but that’s the extent of my motherhood. I knew I loved and cherished my freedom when the kids would go to their mom’s. I’ve often asked myself why would I have a baby? Is it because my body is designed to carry one? It’s just what you do? Does it allow someone to be there at your death bed? All of my answers did not point to me having a child.
MY FINAL DECISION
After deep soul searching, having a child will not be in my cards. I want to be able to contribute a lot to this earth and my contribution will not be through my own child. I technically already have three, and I’m very active and present. In a non-COVID world, I was volunteering at school and was present at every recital. I truly love them as if they’re my own.
The world NEEDS all different types of people, and I am one of them. I’m not going to have a baby for the sole purpose of “that’s just what you do”. I’m consciously choosing to not have one so that I can make a difference in the world.
With love always,
You can follow Jen on Instagram