I realize now that the reason I blogged so frequently for many years is because I had an urgent need to process things that were floating around my mind and in my heart. I also had issues trusting people, so it felt safer to write the mess in my head down and share it with the world (even as that was also terrifying). It was so cathartic and thrilling, discovering things about myself as I wrote and then taking the next step to be seen from the inside out (I never include pictures in blog posts).
Years later, I am sitting here writing this (part of my 30 in 30, we’ll get to why there was no post yesterday in a minute) and do not feel the need to share anything.
Yesterday, I wrote many, many words about my work life and how it is going since moving here to LA one month ago. It was very revealing and alive with truth, but I did not want to share it. I am so glad the words flowed and equally glad I kept them all for me.
Today, I lived out loud on Instagram: dance videos, pictures of my Mom, of my dog, Charlie, and of course words to accompany some of what I shared. My Mother’s Day statement singing the praises of mother love.
Nothing about being childless and single at 41. Nothing about fertility questions and decisions for me to make, should I ever want to birth a child in this lifetime. Nothing about the sting I feel when people assume I have chosen not to have kids, as if this were some kind of empowered feminist decision (it’s not, it’s an utterly annoying and frustrating life circumstance).
Nothing about how it feels to live in a world that caters to moms, sometimes pathologizes singlehood and (gasp) child-less-ness, and likes to deem motherhood the highest signifier of a successful woman, as if I am supposed to wait to be anointed.
I left out the intense feels around my relationship with my mother. This year, I am across the country from her and we had two phone calls (one old school, one FaceTime). I love her so much, but like many mother-daughter duos our relationship road has been fraught with frustration over the years. I bought her a card but didn’t mail it in time, so I held onto it for a delivery in a few weeks when I go back to New York to pick up my dog…so the ache of this new distance thing that includes temporarily being so far from my little furry baby was also deeply felt.
And yet, I wanted to feel the joy today. I wanted to be out of emo mode on this particular subject of doing Mother’s Day, and I wanted to be happy and grateful to be alive. So I danced, I taught a barre class, I took a kettlebell/vipr class, I walked to Venice and Erewhon (ooh la la, my first time!) for food, I arrived home to meet a soul sister friend who gifted me with furniture for the gem of an apartment I am renting.
I cleaned my home top to bottom while listening to Marianne Williamson on Oprah’s podcast and then Marc Maron’s WTF. All my clothes now away and out of plain view. I message with friends. I voice memo’d and Vox’d.
I sat, I felt, I sang.
I cooked, I ate, I cleaned some more.
I scrolled. I smiled. So much light.
I did not sink because I refuse to sink anymore, even for a day.
I have gone through too much life at this point and know too much. With so much bullshit to sift through in this world, over most of which we have zero control, the decision to be real with ourselves becomes an act of radical survival.
So I did not deny how I feel on mother’s day. It was there, only, on the shelf.
And of course I am happy for mothers! If you are a mom and reading this, yes, I am happy for you. I absorbed social media with a soft heart and felt the love, the beauty.
These days I am happy for anyone and everyone who is happy with their life, as long as they’re not harming others.
I am also sad, because being a non mom at my age is disconcerting. I sometimes question if, deep down inside, I never really wanted to be one in the first place.
Yeah, no, that’s not the truth.
I will say this: I’ve never met anyone with whom I’ve wanted to have a baby. The sheer suckage of this fact is real. It sucksssss, I will not mince words.
I never wanted to be a single mother and still don’t.
I also never wanted to freeze my eggs. And still don’t.
So, here we are :O)
I don’t know where I fall. Childless by choice? Not exactly. Desperately, yearning to be a mom? Not really that either.
Feeling out of alignment as concerns my biological age, and therefore shocked and awed to be in the dusk of my childbearing years?
It is hard to believe that since getting my period in sleepaway sports camp however many years ago (MANY) I have ovulated and menstruated every month (give or take) and never, despite ample sex, never not ONCE ever conceived a child.
I have never needed to exercise my right to choose.
I know there is still time. If I want it, I can do some sperm shopping. I could still freeze my eggs.
I may still meet the man with whom I actually want to do the thing.
My words are for anyone who is over 30, 35, 40, and wondering how to face their situation. Do it with love and gentleness. Do it with some iota of Faith that what is meant to be truly will be. I was very nice to myself today. I didn’t act out or harm myself, my thoughts were for the most part compassionate. I stayed in my skin. I made sure to stay connected to friends and loved ones. I celebrated women who have mothered me and friends of mine who have children of their own.
I didn’t spend too much time looking at other people’s social media. Babies are really cute but on days like today, social media feels a lot like a snow globe after you shake it, images of families like floating particles dancing in the sky above my head.
So I paid attention to what I needed/wanted to get done today, and where my feet are taking me.
I know it takes INCREDIBLE strength to be a Mom. I also know from experience it takes incredible strength to not be one of the millions of women in every single part of the world who bear a child. When you want to but so far you can’t or haven’t, either because of miscarriages, not having a partner, or whatever reason is yours.
It hurts, and when something hurts you learn to be resilient in the feeling, in the processing. For me, today, the decision and living in my power also meant choosing my life force. It also meant deeply embracing who I am and what I want to be in my life today. That includes my Mom, celebrating her life and greatness, it means my incredible friends, my fur baby Charlie, my job(s), and so much more.
I go to bed so grateful and feeling the best I have on Mother’s Day in a long time.