The feeling of panic I get when I think that I may never have kids is difficult to explain. All my life I have planned for children; the ‘Kids rooms’ and ‘Child care’ boards on pinterest didn’t start with the positive pregnancy test, nor did the obsession with babies and children.
I love them, I always have, I cannot remember a time in my life whe I didn’t want children.
I make faces at children in supermarkets, I wave at babies and engage children on the bus into song (other passengers not so keen on that one but it’s better than a screaming 5 year old). I work with children from 3 to 8 at a Forrest School, and I one-to-one there with children with special or additional needs.
Any excuse and I will play and engage and cuddle with the youngest members of our family. I love drawing chalk on the pavements and toy cars and playing make pretend.
I like soothing them when they cry and cooling off tantrums. I enjoy the difficult ones, the ones who often get labeled as ‘pickly’ children at school because they act up, or who just need a little more love and attention than other, more independant children.
I grew up in a patchwork family with a severely autistic step brother. It takes a lot to shock me, but nevertheless children are still an endless surprise.
If I had to spend the rest of my life with only children or only adults it wouldn’t be a difficult choice. Children. They are so open to learning things, they are so curious and tempremental and unpredictable. One day they want to be an astronaut and the next an explorer or a professional ice skater. They don’t care if you’re poor or what your religion is and if you are gay or straight; they care if you pay attention to them and treat them fairly.
They don’t judge on dissabilties, they just ask why someone is different. One of the kids at our forrest school has Cerebral Palsy, the other kids asked why he talked differently and why he sometimes sat with me and not them, but saying ‘… is just like you only sometimes his body doesn’t do what you would expect it to’, or ‘He gets tired quickly’ was all the explanation they needed to just go
‘Okay, … is a bit different, we’ll see if he likes playing dinosaurs and throwing sticks with us.’
And stop staring and just let him join in with what group activities he was comfortable with.
They didn’t worry they were rude about asking why he was different, they worried that he didn’t like them and didn’t want to play.
One of my best friends once remarked to me that I was the broodiest person she knew, if I’m honest that’s not an unfair assessment.
Since finding out I was pregnant and our subsequent miscarriage the pull for children is worse. Now I know I have a baby shaped gap in my life, the urge to fill it is even greater.
What was once a vague urge to have kids when I’m older and settled has morphed into a nagging desire that doesn’t abate.
The biological clock my mother jokingly warned me about a thousand times growing up has well and truely kicked in.
“The hormones kicked in and it was all:
I want a baby and I want one now!“
Is how she said she knew it was time to have kids.
Mine was pretty dormant until I found out I was pregnant (unplanned though it may have been.)
Then wham it hit.
The baby drive, the hormonal beast reared it’s head and infected me with the desire to buy cribs and have kids asap.
And even if I could we’re not ready emotionally or financially. I still live with my parents for christ sake.
Adoption in the future is looking like the only sensible option. The statistics as to whether I would carry a successful pregnancy were already against me, and now I have miscarried they are up another 20%, even without accounting for the possible inherited health issues.
In my head this is the most sensible option. Wait till we have got our degrees, get a house, get married, stable income – then kids.
Except my heart and my hormones didn’t get that memo. Wait 10 years!?
For children! Why not right now?
Thinking about pregnancy, about kids of my own and knowing that maybe it won’t ever be on the cards for me makes my chest physically hurt. My breathing gets shorter and I have to take deep breaths not to hypervente.
I just panic.
I still can’t process it.
When I wasn’t pregnant and never had been, but knew kids of my own would be difficult, I was perfectly fine with it as the solution seemed simple. Adopt, make the world a better place and change lives.
Yet having been pregnant wih a child of my own it is difficult to explain how that no longer seems like the ideal solution. I can understand why people go through IVF and not just adopt. It isn’t that I would cherish or love the child any less than were they mine by birth, I know from growing up that family doesn’t work like that, I don’t love my step siblings less than my biological brother, I just love them a little different.
It’s just that the idea of adoption doesn’t totally satisfy the ridiculous biological urge for my own babies. It’s selfish but that’s evolution. We’re designed to want babies of our own. It’s why human beings are so successful.
Yet, while the wait feels like a milenia, and not just a sensible gap, I know time will pass and life will go on.
If nothing else loosing Emmet taught me that life can and will go on, even through it feels like the most impossible thing to just keep breathing, you can and will, and the day will pass.
I know (and hope) that eventually the call of the hormones will abate and leave me in peace. And that even without that knowledge I would wait a hundred years or more, if I knew that at the end of the fight, I would hold a child or baby in my arms and say to the world, whether biological or not:
“This one’s mine. This one stays.”
Love and support always.
Surviving Miscarriage Together x