The incredible response to my last post has seriously thrown off my focus and made it nearly impossible to move on. I have written and re-written several drafts of fresh new posts – highlights from travels to Switzerland and Berlin, visits to authentic tea shops and seeing the breath-taking 3000-year old Nefertiti bust – only to set every draft aside unfinished. I took the weekend off and spent it in Seattle to refresh my thoughts and clear my mind, to absolutely no avail! It has taken all my emotional energy to consume and respond in kind to the out pour of my reader feedback on a subject that no doubt struck a chord with more than a few of us.
I haven’t the words to thank you for sharing your stories, offering your insights, asking me the tough questions and leaving the choice with resounding confidence in my hands.
The only thing that felt right following 40,000 plus words of conversation in 206 comments was to follow with a thank you.
And it would not be a proper heart-felt thank you if I did not thank you directly. The only way to do that (for now) is by sharing with the world a part of what you gave me. I have highlighted 65 of my most favorite quotes from your stories. If you think for a second that this was easy to do, think again or just read some of the original comments!Here’s hoping this inspiration will continue to shine for me and others who will see it:
1 ~ Uzma from Seeking Light:
Children bring joy. … Your questions are questions for the heart. Let love answer, not fear.
2 ~ Zeenat from Positive Provocations:
My only advice to you, when you want to be a mother, you will feel the yearning desire to be a mother.
3 ~ Tony Teegarden from tonyteegarden[dot]com:
It’s a two sided story of which neither is wrong, (Having children or not) however it’s not as important to me I can admit and so dedicating my life to something greater is what I value right now.
4 ~ Michelle Rogerson from The Greater Good Life:
It’s important to remember that just because society pressures us to have children, we should listen to our instincts.
5 ~ Abubakar Jamil from Abubakar Jamil[dot]com:
And as for the answers–they are always there–right inside the questions… Just look into your questions, their nature, their timing, their content–patiently, thoughtfully and purposefully, and the answers will jump out at you.
6 ~ Alex Blackwell from The Bridgemaker:
A child is an expression of the love we share. There is something spiritual about raising a family and helping these young souls find their way in life.
7 ~ Michael Brown from Real Learning, for a Change:
It is WHY this leap into the unknown is so worth doing. There is nothing in my life that compares with that single moment, and never will be.
8 ~ Kristin:
Too many people have hinted to me that a life without children is a life unfulfilled. I completely disagree.
9 ~ Jean:
I could have easily lived happily without children but now they are here I am glad I did. … I would say that when in doubt — DON’T!
10 ~ Garry Wilmore from I miei cari amici:
As I grow older, I am more and more convinced that there are many roads to personal fulfillment – and that having children is not for everyone.
11 ~ Thekla Richter from Thekla Richter [dot] com:
I chose to have a child because I felt moved to nurture a soul with love through those early years, and to create this form of family.
12 ~ Barbara Hammond from Zero to Sixty and Beyond:
Our lives are destined by a master plan. Even if you feel in your heart you don’t want children, it’s ultimately in the hands of a higher power.
13 ~ James from Four Sides:
The desire to have children is a gut feeling and not a decision to be made. If your gut is calling to you saying you should be having children, then start working at it. If you have to think about it, you probably aren’t ready for it.
14 ~ Aileen from Kaizen Vision:
It’s a personal decision and one that others do judge. As individuals we owe it to ourselves to examine what is right for us — and honor that which is true for us.
15 ~ Jen Gresham from Everyday Bright:
But she is not my legacy and certainly not my only passion. I continue to dream and strive just as I always have. What kind of role model would I be if I gave all that up?
16 ~ Leah McClellan from Peaceful Planet:
I never had any strong desire to have kids either, so I haven’t. Plus there’s plenty of people around already; I don’t see any need to add to the population pool
17 ~ Jean Burman from Jean Burman [dot]com:
Children always come with enough love and life purpose to fulfill their intended destiny. Children give mothers [and no doubt fathers – but that’s not my experience to tell] a spiritual dimension that cannot be achieved in any other way.
18 ~ Sandra Lee from Always Well Within:
I have never had the desire to have children and have never had any regrets. We are all so different and need to follow our own hearts, but of course this is one of the most difficult of all life decisions.
19 ~ Emiel from The Act of Traveling:
Farnoosh, you live your life in a such a way that raising a child would be difficult, you have so many things that you pursue. On the other hand, raising a child with the way you look at life could only be an added value to mankind, seriously.
20 ~ Sue from Whispering Gums:
I don’t expect my children to look after me when I get older though it would be nice if they cared about me, but just knowing this person you love is part of the present and future is a really powerful thing. I cannot imagine life without it.
21 ~ Galen Pearl from 10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place:
A good friend said, “I’m going to tell you the best advice I ever got about having kids. Don’t have kids until you can’t stand not to.”
22 ~ Katie Lance from Mommy hood and Marketing:
Does your life change? Absolutely — but to me, it enhanced my life. I still have all my hopes, dreams, hobbies, passions — they are just framed a little differently now that I have kids…. and that’s ok.
23 ~ Evelyn Parham from Become a Healthier You:
Whatever you decide, always be true to yourself. Don’t do anything because of others or you feel you need to because of your age or other reasons. Do it because “Farnoosh” wants to do it.
24 ~ Maggie:
I don’t think everyone on this planet was intended to be a parent. For me, I don’t know whether I was intended to be a mother or not, but I feel very strongly that my son has a reason for being here.
25 ~ Lance Ekum from The Jungle of Life:
And if we are all connected, if we are all one…then, while we may or may not be biological parents to another…we can still have the deep connection of love.
26 ~ Tess Marshall from The Bold Life:
I wish society would leave women who don’t want children alone!….I’m not one who believes it’s a sacrifice to be a parent. It’s a choice. Children don’t owe parents anything. Not even respect. Parents earn respect like anyone else.
27 ~Angela Artemis from Powered by Intuition:
I love to be around children, but I also don’t feel I’ve missed out by not having them. Each of us is different and has a special role to play.
28 ~ Irving The Vizier from The Han of Harmony:
When the day comes and I am gone, I am gone, that is all there is to it. I don’t think it is fair to burden our children, if we have them, with our legacies or what nots. If we do have them it is because it is an act of love and fulfillment.
29 ~ Suzanne Mints McConnell:
He is what keeps me going when all seems lost in this world (and here lately he is all I have). I get to marvel at this little person I helped create. I see him growing and learning daily. It is truly a wonder to behold.
30 ~ Annie from Saturdays in June:
I just don’t feel that emptiness when they aren’t around or even the desire to have one of my after playing with them. It just doesn’t seem like an empty spot in my life and as I get older it seems less and less like a part of a future I imagine.
31 ~ Cristina from Positively Beauty:
But you see, I realised that I didn’t really want to have a baby, I wanted “to want to have a baby”. But I believe that each one of us is different, and not every one of us has to live the same kind of life. I know that I’m missing out on something, but that happens every time we make a choice…
32 ~ Nabila:
First, i really panicked, no more outings, no more traveling, no more LIFE. I cried a lot , now that he is in my life, I am thinking, how could I live without him, he teaches me a lot, and I learned to love life in new ways.
33 ~ The Exception from The Exception[dot]com:
I didn’t plan my daughter — she arrived… dreams changed as did my life because I chose and continue to choose to parent mindfully with the realization that she is it.
Children don’t bring happiness. Happiness is something that each person finds within.
34 ~ Casey Hills:
That’s what they’re supposed to do after they get married. Their parents want grandchildren. It will fix their marriage. It will make them happy. A child is now a status symbol. A child is now a fashion accessory.
35 ~ Keith from Straight Up Living:
To live a life that impacts this world in a deep and loving way is to really LIVE! Being a parent is simply just ONE way in which this can be accomplished.
36 ~ Nea from Self-Improvement Saga:
Raising children is an adventure, but no adventure is for everyone. It takes a lot of sacrifice, change, hard work and completely rearranging your life.
37 ~ Arianne from Sweet Nightingale:
I’ve always thought something was wrong with me because I have never desired children. I remember being a young girl in school, and wondering why most of the girls wanted to be mothers when they grew up.
38 ~ Raam Dev from RaamDev[dot]com:
I feel extremely fortunate to be born into a life where my opportunities are practically endless. I have the potential to give back to the world in a way that many people cannot. … Does that mean we shouldn’t have children? No, but I think it also means that we most certainly don’t need to have children either.
39 ~ Rebekah:
There is no way someone like you will fail to give back to this world, and you’ll give in the way you desire most.
40 ~ Sahar:
I personally felt in my heart that I want to experience the joy of giving unconditional love. I still believe having children is blessing, and at the same time not having children is also a blessing. The key is to follow your heart…
41 ~ Katie Tallo from Momentum Gathering:
Ultimately, your lives are yours to live as you choose. I’m sure it will be a shared life full of love, adventure, health and constant lively and engaging debates over issues like this one.
42 ~ Arvind Devalia from ArvindDevaliva[dot]com:
I suspect that this experience of seeing the pain of losing a child left a deep mark on me which has maybe subconsciously stopped me from wanting to have children. … Now my focus is to devote all my energy to my work and my life purpose.
43 ~ Kim Curry from Star Gazer:
I am a woman engineer, and engineers are trained to approach things from a logical perspective. Yet even at that, there is something about having a child that defies logic.
44 ~ Preeti from Happy Heart and Mind:
Having children or not, it is a personal choice….Even though I am busy with kids, I choose them over peace and quiet.
45 ~ John Sherry from Real Simple People:
I thought children would get in my way but it was that success that got in my way. Success can’t love you when you’ve had a bad day or give you a kiss that melts you after a trudge home in the snow.
46 ~ Tom Sorhannus from Experience and Grow:
I don´t think your happiness depends on if you have children or not. That would mean you put the conditions for your happiness on someone else. It´s great if you live in a state of happiness but no state lasts forever.
47 ~ Debbie from Spirit of Less:
I would say to listen to your inner most feelings and be true to them, if it’s meant to be it will be and you will know. I believe I was meant to have her.
48 ~ Joshua Noerr from JoshuaNoerr[dot]com:
I had wide and varied pursuits and felt a child would just get in my way. I love my life and I don’t want some little rug rats messing things up! Yesterday, I heard the heartbeat of my 8 week old “baby” … There is not going back to the person I once was.
49 ~ Georges from georges-sokol[dot]com:
Having children is unconsciously selfish. … We have genes in us that are selfish in the sense that they want to replicate themselves to the next generation at the expense of anything else.
50 ~ Amy:
So many people have kids for COMPLETELY selfish reasons. To me what seems unselfish is not having a kid of your own but adopting one. Giving a kid a chance who never had one. We have to be honest with ourselves. You have to identify what makes you happy.
51 ~ Lana Kravtsova from Daring Clarity:
Having children is a life experience just like everything else — changing the world, traveling, pursuing your passions etc. Just an experience. Do you want to have this experience in your life when you look back 50 years from now?
52 ~ Evita from Evolving Beings:
I have come too far, to go backwards and do anything out of unconscious actions, obligation, expectation or fear. I know there is a bigger divine plan in place for everything that has transpired in my life thus far, and everything that will.
53 ~ Patty from Why Not Start Now:
There are consequences to opting out of parenthood. For the most part, the collective chooses to have children. That’s always been true and will probably always be true. So not having children sets you apart from the collective in mysterious and sometimes difficult to articulate ways.
54~ Kate Watson:
A smart woman once told me that, if you ultimately decide not to have children, you should prepare yourself for other’s misperceptions, however. Many will believe you either are unable to have children, dislike children or are selfish.
55 ~ Nicholas Cardot from Site Sketch 101:
Children are bratty, snot-nosed inconveniences. The way they want to play and get into things doesn’t jive with my lifestyle of reading, studying, working and growing. Their loud, obnoxious presence is like nails on a chalk board.
56 ~ Jasmine Rose Penter from The Prevention Researcher:
I really wish we as a society understood, the huge and important role of parenthood- and that we would own those roles and hold one another accountable to fulfill the responsibilities that come with those.
57 ~ Chase Night from Unbridled Experience:
Reasons I Don’t Want Children: ….terrified they would be ugly.
Reasons I Want Children: We smart people must counteract this movement by producing smart babies to keep the dumb people’s babies from ruling the world by sheer force of numbers.
58 ~ Michelle Welch from New Biz Blogger:
I finally truly got what it meant to love something unconditionally. I sometimes miss my “old” life … I wouldn’t be truthful if I said otherwise. And I’ve had to make a lot of sacrifices to now share my space with these 2 little human beings
59 ~ Sheila from 2 Cycle 2Gether:
I find myself in disbelief, however, that our culture continues to prompt and reward and celebrate people for choosing biological children over adopted children. It seems illogical and cruel to me to choose to procreate when so many children are already in need of parents and their love.
60 ~ Jean Gogolin from The Writers Clinic:
It strikes me this … question is one asked only by the young not only because youth is the only time one CAN give birth but because we lack the experience then to know what having children will mean over a lifetime.
61 ~ Leila Ahmadi:
I fall in love with children easily and can make good connections with them but can never imagine myself to one of my own.
62 ~ Alicia from Shireen in Between:
“If you don’t have kids who will take care of you when you are old?” I thought to myself — there have to be greater reasons than this and I still can’t quite tap into them.
63 ~ Evelyn Lim from Abundance Tapestry:
My subsequent findings or memories also allowed me to know that I have been with the souls of my children a number of times.
64 ~ Sibyl from AlternaView:
I just sat still and allowed things to unfold as they should and I didn’t make a decision until I was ready….the answers we need are always within….you have the answer.
65 ~ Pascal Monmoine from Photography by Pascal:
If you are disciplined and wise enough not to let that happen, then the answer of your heart is always of absolute clarity, simplicity and truthfulness.
As for where I stand in my decision, I assure you that I am nowhere closer than before because all of you gave me so much more to consider. My mind has played endless matches of ping pong as I read your flow of compassion and wisdom: I will, I won’t, I definitely will, I absolutely won’t, I can’t wait, I must wait, I feel it, I feel it not, I wonder what if, I wonder what if not. For now, the topic is set aside – if only from sheer exhaustion – to be opened when my heart is ready to listen to the sound of its own truth.
I want to thank you for the treasures of your stories, for the tears, the laughs, the long stares at the wall and the hours of conversations they generated. Thank you for making it so crystal clear at times and so crushingly difficult at other times to see the answer or to know my own heart’s ultimate desires. Perhaps all we ever need to know the answers is time.
More than anything, thank you especially for making one single thing unequivocally clear, that you make the blog, you give the blog a pulse, a voice, a face and a human touch. Thank you for validating all my reasons to blog so crystal clear, and for not letting me make my decision alone.