- Is it because you always saw yourself as a mom/dad? and that is your identity?
- Did you have a great family and you want that same happiness?
- Did you have a dysfunctional family and you want to do a better job?
- Because that's what you're supposed to?
- Because you got pregnant?
- Because you want to live on and leave a legacy in your children?
- You want to see yourself/ your spouse in these little ones you created?
A girlfriend of mine and I used to say that when God gave out the motherhood gene, we were out picking flowers or something, because WE did not get that gene. We never oohed and ahhed at cute booties and blankets. We never thought about cute names or dreamt about family outings. We never looked at babies with misty eyes, clouded by longing. Nope. Not us. Clear-eyed and sure. We didn't long for a child of our own. Don't get us wrong, we loved babies! Like each of our nieces and nephews - the ones you could give back at the end of an outing.
Once I married, I asked many people, "Why do/did you want children?" Not to question their judgement, but to solve a mystery for me, to have them explain the incomprehensible equation. Like approaching a Calculus T.A. The most common answer was, "I don't know," accompanied by a shrug of the shoulders. I would even feed them the list of questions, and none of them seemed to ring true. They would agree hesitantly to one or another, but there weren't any "Ah ha!" responses. Here again, I was the odd one out. Nobody seemed to really care why they wanted a family. They were not intrigued by my question, but rather, saw it as a distraction, as if your spouse asked you during The Game if you wanted broccoli or carrots with dinner.
In the end, I decided that wanting children is a primal thing. It is something in the depths of our being, planted there by our Maker. Somewhere along the line, between Eve eating the fruit and here, my friend and I lost that gift that God gave us. That makes me sad now, now that I am a mother because I think I still lack something in my Being.
When the time came and we chose to create a family, we made a family through adoption. So this brought about a whole 'nother round of questions about what it means to want a family; be a family. I don't know if I love my son as much as if he had come from my body, because he is and will be our Only. I do know though, that I love him fiercely; as fiercely as any Momma Bear. I know of a couple who wants a family in the worst way, but he refuses to even consider adoption. Let me be clear: adoption is not for everyone. Neither is parenthood. But I have to wonder, does he really want to come together with joy or is it something else? What do you consider is a child of your own? Do you want a baby or do you want something of yourself? Do you want to give of yourself or get something yourself?
I'm understanding parts of the equation, but there are steps that are still murky to me. I need a Parenting T.A.