This isn't going to be that sexy of a post, I must say. No sensual story or sexy topic here. Just something on my mind that I find interesting. And it's a bit alarming to me, as well, so why not talk about it for Freaky Friday the 13th.
Being a girl of a certain age, I've noticed more and more of my friends from different circles procreating.
It started with my sisters and cousins having babies (they are all older than me, but it was still weird). Suddenly I was surrounded by a bunch of milk-starved humans who required sustenance almost every hour on the hour, and because they couldn't voice their discontent, they cried and screeched and whined. They were entirely helpless and frighteningly fragile.
Most of them are boys, by the way. I think boys might take over the world if you just take a peek at my family and friends.
The babies were (and remain) adorable, and when they got a bit older and could say some words they became even cuter. Seeing the bond between a mother and her baby was so heartwarming, and a little maternal string inside me tugged. The misery my sisters and cousins went through, however, was not forgotten by me. They haven't forgotten, either, but it's easier to put it out of your mind when you're bone-tired from late night feedings/freak-outs, or when your kid says "Mommy" for the first time. Pretty much all of them had difficult pregnancies, and a good amount of them had agonizing births, but they emerged on the other side with a baby that looked adoringly and needfully at them from day one. They've even had more children. For me, a mere bystander, I remain(ed) horrified by some of what I've seen. I'm also a bit of a wuss, so there's that.
There was just another birth recently. Another boy. A family member elbowed me sharply in the ribs. "Your turn." Later, the kind of uncle that's in every family found me and put a hand on each of my shoulders. "It's up to you to have a girl now, missy."
Babies are contagious. So are weddings (everyone is getting fucking married, too), but that's a different story.
Then I saw things shift on Facebook. Girls just a few years older were having kids. Smiling pictures of girls who used to wear dresses that showed their asses, or experimented with ecstasy, or dated an asshole for years, or set their fucking Ramen on fire were having kids.
It is around then I panicked. What the hell is going on? I'm still young, dammit! I hyperventilated a little when I saw the spike in births and marriages. The girls were older, yeah, but not by much.
I remembered hearing that the teenage years were the best biological time to be pregnant because teenage girls are nubile, and also since forever ago girls had babies during that age bracket. Thankfully none of my close friends were pregnant, but were we losing time? Should we maybe go out on more dates? Try to find The One? I took some petty comfort in knowing that I was the youngest of our group.
Some day I want babies. I want a kid to call me "Mom" and I want to mean that much to someone. Emphasis on the some day. I'm not in a serious relationship, I'm not married, I'm not financially stable... I haven't traveled to all the places I want to go to. I haven't met the man who makes me diamond-eyed and giddy. What could I offer a tiny baby right now? So it freaks me out when I see Brittany and her son, or Jessica and her spaghetti-covered daughter, and realize "These girls are only 3, 4 years older than me!"
It's a crazy mindfuck when you see girls who you went to high school or college with post all kinds of parent-related jokes and articles on Facebook, drowning your feed with motherhood.
Finally I decided I should probably mind my own business, as it wasn't my business at all. I was committing the same sin many had; I was judging or obsessing about things that had nothing to do with me. Girls I once knew were having kids, and they looked happy. I wished them the best. There was no need to get Baby Crazy.
And as for my relatives with their jokes and insinuations, they needed to slow their roll and maybe take a pill for their case of Baby Crazy. I don't want to sound dramatic or get into any feminist ideologies, but I'm more than my reproductive system. I'll have a baby when I'm good and ready, boy OR girl, and it's none of their business, either.
Seeing that stuff on Facebook is just a reminder to us we're not little girls anymore. We're getting older, entering that period of time where we're young but we're not that young. People joke about the quarter-life crisis, and I think there is one to a certain extent. It's quite startling to realize that no one owes you anything, that it really is up to you now to do something with the life you've been given. You also can't whine about trivial bullshit anymore (or you can, but eventually you'll find yourself entirely alone), because even though you're technically considered an adult at 18, you've (hopefully) done a lot more maturing since then.
So once my fear died down, I was curious. When is the "best age" to have a kid? Biologically, I initially thought, not even taking socially into account. I stumbled upon this article, which is fascinating. Hopefully you find it interesting, too.
I wonder... when is the best age for men to become fathers??? No one seems to be talking about that. Lucky them.
Happy Friday the 13th :) I have some writing to do.
*some of the comments under the article made me sad. Sympathies to anyone struggling to get pregnant, or who can not become pregnant. To see people hurting and longing like that breaks my heart.