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First things first.

March 27, 2012

Hi! I’m OnMon.

Once upon a time I thought I wanted a baby.

I was ten, almost eleven, learning about reproductive health in school for the first time (despite the many claims that we have too little reproductive health education in the U.S., I remember having some class or another focus on these issues from 5th grade all the way through sophomore year of high school). I’d read a book about how babies were made maybe a few years before, but I hadn’t really put it together that THIS COULD BE YOUR LIFE. Learning about periods or tampons when I was eight or nine completely horrified me. Mostly it all seemed really detached from my day-to-day experiences as a kid.

Somewhere around the time that I had that first class in penises and vaginas and how egg-meets-sperm and embryos become fetuses become babies, my hormones happened to turn on. HOLY CRAP. I would like to have sex! Also, someday (NOT right then, mind you – even then I was able to tell I was WAY too young for most sexual experiences, especially pregnancy) I would like to have a baby. Because let’s face it: women’s reproductive biology is awesome, and nurturing a potential human to livelihood is one of the coolest things ever. No uterus has been successfully replicated in a lab, because this stuff is complicated, and we still only understand a fraction of the processes. This is a woman’s job (for those that choose it) and includes some of the most important, and most undervalued, work done by our species.  (Sometimes it seems the people who value it most are the ones with the most difficulty achieving it, couples struggling with fertility issues and gay couples forced to adopt or use reproductive aids to find their so-very-much wanted children.)

Fast forward to my mid-twenties, and I had several philosophical crises reconcile themselves into one big-picture issue at once: I [still] wanted a baby. What did that entail? How much money do they really cost? What’s the best way to raise one? Should I really be messing around with my own gene pool in considering this potential human being?

Personally, I knew I was a bit of a hippie, a bit of a minimalist/pragmatist, and a huge planner/dreamer/schemer. My politics fell somewhere along the lines of “disgruntled Green party member” and my diet was meat-based, though way more Vegan-friendly than the average S.A.D. I scoured the internet and library, and found some awesome, useful, and sometimes downright scary information. I found personal stories and research studies. I found hotly debated parenting topics and discovered that even though I wasn’t a mom, I had an opinion. This little hobby of mine that started as an Amazon.com wish list grew to an Excel spreadsheet and then started getting even bigger. It formed the core of who I wanted to be: a mom, one with a flexible career whose  primary focus was still on her family. Someone who could have kids and still dream big about the future.

Now, I’m almost thirty, happily married to my partner (hereafter known as XY), and I’ve found that flexible career working in the most common profession in the healthcare field (all that baby-study made me vastly more interested in general health and well-being, let me tell you). We’re still in the process of balancing finances and time-management, and thinking we’d like to buy a house and possibly send XY back to school (he’s not totally happy in his current career and doesn’t think he wants stay-at-home dadhood right now) before we commit to bringing yet another human into this world. Especially an Overthought Child.

Don’t you feel just a little bit sorry for my future children? I know I do.

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