Last weekend I found myself at a 4-years-old birthday party. Cowboy-themed, pinata and bounce house inclusive, I had the time of my life. Completely surrounded by toddlers and young children, I absorbed their unbound energy and at that moment in time I appreciated every microscopic morsel that made up life. As a child I related better to adults and now as an adult I can relate better to children. They say Capricorns live their lives in reverse. Born with a responsible, adult nature we let our inner child come out to play the more we get older. For most of my life I had thought that my natural inclinations had me wanting to bear children of my own, lots of them. I imagined little versions of me running around. How fun it would be to educate a new version of me to exactly what I would have wanted myself to turn out into.
It was not only till this past year that I made the proclamation for the first time that I did not want children. I surprised even myself. Where did that come from? To the best of my memory, I have always wanted children. Maybe it was being deeply hurt by someone that I had loved and trusted and realizing that the world is a scary place when someone can look you in the eyes and tell you that he loves you but then goes behind your back and cheats on you and then convinces you once again that he loves you so that you’ll forgive him and then goes and does it again. The second time was my fault for being fooled twice by a good liar.
But, that’s another story that I’d like to forget. I don’t know if I want children of my own. Don’t get me wrong. I love to be around children. People have always said I had a natural knack for them. I just don’t know if I want my own. I mean that’s a huge responsibility. And I want to know if I really want to have them for more reasons than having mini-me’s running around because society says I want to have them.
But, my point was that at the birthday party all of the other people in attendance were part of a couple that included children. It was like I was outside looking in. I was the odd girl out. Around my work friends and college friends we’re all in the same single, dating boat. So, there’s no comparison. But, this world was entirely different to me. This is what people my age have and should want. I felt strangely unfamiliar with who I was for a brief moment. But, I shook it all off when I emerged from the bounce house after eight rounds of Ring-Around-the-Rosie and seven rounds of London Bridges Falling Down and realized that I like playing these games myself. And that I was still a child at heart and needed taking care of myself.