Disclaimer: I do not have kids. This post is not a reflection on anyone as a parent but simply my opinion on child rearing. This post also has nothing to do with my biological clock.
These last two weeks, I’ve spent a lot of time around children (ages 2-7) and I’ve honestly struggled. The kids are my blood too. My nieces and nephews are incredibly cute and loads of fun. But with so much time around the youngins’, it’s got me thinking about whether I could have any of my own.
For the majority of my adulthood, I swore I’d be childless for life. I really enjoy being an aunt, hanging out for a couple of hours with friends’ kids, or babysitting here and there. I’ve also had my doubts on whether I would make a fit mother and whether my selfishness could be put aside long enough to raise a child.
I’ve always had a hard time putting myself in other people’s shoes. I truly admire parents for doing what they do: right or wrong. It must be the hardest job on the planet but also the most fulfilling. I can’t even imagine. The tears, scars, and sleepless nights I’ve seen parents (mine included) endure is not something I’d be willing to sign up for right now. Thinking about kids also brings up the question of “what if I did get pregnant?”. Not to get too far into details, all I know is it would be the hardest decision I’d ever have to make and I don’t know what I would do. That’s all.
My struggle recently has been communicating with young ones. They all learn differently and every parent chooses to raise their child the way they see fit. It seems that inserting myself into a current family dynamic really throws things for a loop. Even within one family, you will find inconsistencies in discipline and I’ve struggled with it. I want to be liked too much by my nieces and nephews and find myself trying to make up for lost time. That’s mistake number 1.
Mistake number 2 is not being myself. If I try to communicate or discipline in a way that is “un-Catarina”, they won’t get to know the real me. Kids are smart too. Smarter than you think. They will test you in ways you’ve never been tested. And you gotta let it roll off your back. Don’t take it personal and don’t let them see you sweat. Walk away and take a breather.
Although I truly enjoy spending time with the young ones in my family, I’m nowhere near ready to do it on my own. Nor am I convinced I ever will. Of course, I have at least ten years to make that decision. Family time just has me thinking a lot.