I always thought I would have children but here I am at almost 43 without a child in sight.
Am I good with that, yes.
Would I have enjoyed motherhood, I think so.
Do I have any regrets, no.
Yet it is another example of how things don’t necessarily work out the way I thought they were going to.
Births, deaths, jobs, friendships, relationships, conversations and dreams.
The older I get the more I appreciate the sentiment of not being attached to an outcome: that is where the suffering in a situation can be found. Our expectations are what create the fall – not only in how we think our life should work out, but in the belief of what other people around us should and shouldn’t be doing.
Suffering is the gap between expectation and reality!
If I had been laser-focused on being a mother I would be in a state of panic right now. My eggs certainly aren’t on the fresh side anymore and even though people continuously tell me “You still have time!”, I trust that the Universe has me right where I am meant to be at this moment – and that is single and childless.
If I didn’t trust my journey or the greater plan that has been scripted for me I either would have had a child with a man I knew I was not going to go the distance with, done it on my own with an sperm donor and bounced straight into single motherhood, or become one of those women who are so obsessed with getting pregnant that they seem a touch unstable at times.
There is nothing wrong with any of those choices – they just weren’t for me.
Yesterday as I chatted with my friend about all things motherhood (she has two kids under five) she asked me why it doesn’t make me sad that I am not a mother.
I smiled when I heard this question. Firstly, because it gave me great insight into her beliefs around motherhood, and secondly because she genuinely loves me and wants to understand my beliefs better.
I explained my beliefs to her:
- I am right where I am meant to be, therefore I am not making it wrong
- I have a phenomenal life and I am grateful for that
- I am playing a much bigger game than this one life. I have had lives before this one where I had children and will have lives after this one where I will have more children
- I am perfect, whole and complete right now. If I believe that my life isn’t those things, then I will suffer and I refuse to choose that. Plus, suffering really sucks – so why do it?
Us human beings are so fascinating in how we create beliefs that will cause us pain, or how we won’t let go of a belief even though it causes us pain. Yet we have the right to choose every single day.
Our beliefs create the world we live in and we often project them on to others in pursuit of making sense of someone else’s world.
Remember: we don’t have to understand everyone else’s world, we just have to appreciate that they have a different view to us.
I remember once flying with a male cabin crew member who questioned me on why I didn’t have children. I explained that my marriage had ended and I had not yet found the right man who I wanted to start a family with. He told me I was selfish and that it wasn’t all about me.
Interesting….. To be honest, I totally wanted to punch him in the face 🙂 But instead I just smiled and thanked him for his somewhat “alternative” view.
Whether it’s motherhood, a relationship, a career move or decision, or anything else – find beliefs that support your reality. If you have none in your bank then create some new ones!
Humans are not meant to live in suffering, yet so many of us do because our reality is different to our expectations. A part of our spiritual growth, in my humble opinion, is to find peace and joy in our everyday life, even if it’s different to how we imagined it being.
This is a skill we want in our toolkit.