Wednesday, 23 November 2011

To Procreate, or Not To Procreate, That is the Question...

Children.  They light up your life and empty your wallet.  They provide you with unlimited love and a seemingly endless stream of stinky diapers.  Yet everyone who has them will tell you that, although kids are a ton of work, they are also more than worth the sacrifice. 
For myself, it was always a given that I would have kids.  I am an only child (in case you couldn`t tell from my inherent bossiness and self-obsession) and therefore require children in order to have any family left once my parents kick the bucket.  However, for some people the question of procreation is not so cut and dried.   Sure, there are plenty out there like me who have always wanted kids.  But then there are those, like my friend Christina, who know they don`t want children because in her own words, she “has no desire for them and wouldn’t know what to do with them.”  To you I say, bravo.  While I may have a hard time understanding why you don’t want to emulate me in all aspects of your life, I respect the fact that you know your own mind and are responsible enough not to bring a child into the world just because others think you should. 
There is also a third group of people, to which I would like to offer my services today.  This is the ‘undecided’ group.  You know who I mean - the people who like kids but who have no problem handing them back to mommy when they get poopy or grouchy.   Maybe you’re not sure if you are ‘ready’; maybe you worry about not having enough money, or time, or patience.  Well, ponder no longer my friends.  I have created a simple questionnaire* that will help you determine whether or not you are ‘ready’ to take up permanent residency in Mommyland.  So grab a pen and some paper write down the answer that best describes you:

1.  When someone vomits in your vicinity you:
a) Quickly volunteer to hold back their hair
b) Ask if there is anything you can get them while discreetly keeping your distance so as not to get puke splatter on your new shoes
c) Automatically begin to puke as well because you really can’t handle the sight/sound/smells of vomit – in fact you are getting queasy just reading this.

2.  When dinner time rolls around you tend to:
a) Cook a variety of healthy yet tasty meals
b) Pop something in the microwave or order take-out
c) Ask your Mom what’s for dinner

3.  If you don’t get a good night’s sleep you are:
a) Okay, as long as you have a morning caffeine fix
b) Irritable, but all will be well if you can squeeze in a nap at lunch
c) Going to sleep until noon, and God help the person who tries to stop you

4.  If your significant other empties the dishwasher for you, and doesn’t put the dishes in the proper places, you will:
a) Thank them graciously and secretly put things away when they are not around
b) Say thank you but then give them a five minute lecture about where things actually go
c) Either lose your shit and break the dishes in an angry rage or turn into Ms. Pillbury from Glee by making this face, donning rubber gloves and scrubbing your dishes with a toothbrush while counting to 100.

5.  When faced with the dilemma of only having enough money to pay off either your credit card balance or your cable bill you:
a) Pay off the credit card and cancel the cable – it will save you money in the long run and you are too busy volunteering at the homeless shelter to watch Survivor anyway
b) Pay the cable bill – your interest rate isn’t bad and you will be able to pay it all off next month, but you just can’t miss the season finale of Dancing with the Stars
c) Pay neither – if you can squeeze out a few tears your dad will fork over the money for those bills later – right now you must have a new workout outfit from lululemon.
If you answered mostly A’s, not only are you ready for kids, you will probably win mother of the year.  If you answered B’s, welcome to the club and I say, as long as you like kids, feel free to have them.  If you answered mostly C’s, you may want to reconsider child bearing, at least until your mom can find the time to give you some cooking lessons, at which point I am sure that even you will make satisfactory parents. 
At the end of the day, the only one who can determine if you are ‘ready’ is you.  As you will quickly learn if you do become a parent, there is no recipe for making a perfect parent – great parents come in all different shapes and sizes.  Married, unmarried, young, old, straight or otherwise, the most important thing is that you try your best and give your kids all the love you can.  So even if your mom still cooks you dinner and you have an affinity for lululemon, you can still be a great parent.  Just make sure you keep an airsick bag handy, because one thing that is guaranteed about parenting is that your kid will puke on you at least a few times during your stay in Mommyland and it’s always better to be safe than be puked on. 
You’re Welcome
*This questionnaire is solely the construct of a rather befuddled mind and does not claim to have any kind of scientific authenticity.  Your decision to procreate is your own and this is meant to be a humorous guide only. 

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