In this climate of fear and uncertainty, it is a strange time in the history of the world to even think about having children… or make any kind of long-term plan for that matter.
As I approach my forties, and the timespan in which I am able to give birth to a child narrows, I am confronted with who I am as a woman, who may never have children.
I am surrounded by so many beautiful women who are in a similar situation, I feel we are part of an emerging phenomena in the world, that I rarely hear spoken about.
We walk this childless path for a myriad of different reasons, sometimes by choice and sometimes not, but I imagine all of us getting to know this unchartered territory as we go, exploring who we are in a world in which it can be a struggle to not fall into society’s thinking that we’ve failed somehow, or that it’s a bit sad.
I do have days where I am sad. I was pregnant once and miscarried, but for those blissful few weeks, it felt like the world was divided into those in the parent club and those who weren’t and I was now proudly and joyously part of the gang. I am sad that my body may not experience the most primal, archetypal feminine initiation that exists, and I grieve for all the lost moments of tenderness and connection that only parents and children will experience.
But roaming deeply into the compass of my desires, I cannot at present connect with a desire to create life. I desire to co-parent with others, to be around humans of all ages, I desire family, and to have my roots interwoven with others, but the desire to raise my own child – even though it was something I always imaged for myself – isn’t currently there.
I believe that perhaps some of us childless women are part of a greater plan and our energy is needed elsewhere. Perhaps we are being called to be in service in other ways. Perhaps we are responding to a call of the earth, that does not wish for more humans at present. I don’t know. I just feel to name it.
There is something so tender and powerful and vulnerable about this passage. In the world’s eyes I no longer have the maiden’s youthful allure. I am not a mother and I am not a crone. My face and body and greying hair carry the tales of many adventures. I am like a very ripe peach that has just started to go wrinkly, that is actually at it’s juciest, but has slightly lost its value in the world. And yet I’ve never felt yummier or more at ease in my skin or more powerful than I do now.
In a tribe, everyone has their sacred place. I like to think that women who do not have their own children would also be venerated as playing a unique and special role.
I have so much love and respect for the mothers in the world and all the work they do and the love they channel, but right now I’m wanting to honour the beautiful and brave childless women, finding our way and who we are in this world, exploring fulfilment and tribe and family and expressions of mothering beyond having children. A gentle bow in your direction.