“Are you planning to have kids?” I didn’t mean to ask an uncomfortable question. I was visiting with a couple of young and wonderful women friends and the question came up on its own. For a split second, my friend paused. “Not right now,” she said.
Awkward. We went on with our visit and it was a great day, but I can’t shake the thought that this might have been a sore subject for her.
Whether you are going to have kids at all, and when you are going to have kids, are subjects we military spouses do talk about from time to time. Some women have families that pressure them to have children right away. Thankfully, I did not. My friends forever had to answer that age-old question from their families, “When are you having kids?”
When this happens to other people I always want to share my opinion—It is not your adult responsibility to reproduce! This is a very personal decision and I don’t think we should automatically have child rearing scheduled into everyone’s lives. The human race will not go extinct anytime soon. So don’t sweat it.
Now I am the one asking the question—Are you planning to have kids? Awkward. Because we enjoyed our “SINGLEdom” before kids when we were stationed at Camp LeJeune. We had jet-setting weekends to Myrtle Beach, awesome 4th of July weekend in DC, scuba diving in the Bahamas over Thanksgiving weekend. There was always somewhere to go and our posse was a wonderful bunch of energy and entertainment. I wouldn’t trade that time.
When we decided to start a family, it was a big decision. It was our decision. I love my boys with all my heart and some days they test that love but it will always be there. Enjoy the many phases your life will take you through. Seize the moment, the next one will not be the same!
Deanna Storrer is the Family Readiness Assistant for 1st Tank Battalion in Twentynine Palms, CA. She is a mentor with the local L.I.N.K.S. team.