We often mourn here about what we don’t have and the grief we feel over our lack of children. But it’s important to look at the flip side, too. Because we don’t have children to take care of, we have a lot more time and freedom to devote to other things that are important to us.
Most of our marriage, Fred and I were able to do things that parents can’t do as easily. We traveled a lot. We did not have to worry about taking the kids along or going places that children would enjoy, and we had enough money because we weren’t taking care of children. We went antiquing a lot. We bought things that maybe parents of young children couldn’t afford. I went back to school and got my master’s degree. If we had children, we would be paying for their education. We were able to go out whenever we felt like it: lunch, romantic dinner, shows, hiking, without worrying about babysitters or school schedules. I was able to go away as needed for work.
We were “childfree,” a word that makes me cringe, but not having children does give us freedom to concentrate on adult things. I could not have done all the things I have done in my life if I had to take care of children. I believe I would gladly make the sacrifice in exchange for the chance to be a mother, but I have to remember the blessings, especially this time of year when I’m missing my husband and feeling awfully alone.
Let’s all stop and think of at least five things that we can do because we don’t have kids. Take comfort in the blessings we do have. Feel free to share here.