It's almost 1:30am and I'm still awake. I'm not really surprised. Lots on my mind, and not all of it bad.
The semester begins tomorrow, rather, today. I'm eager to get back to the classroom. I always have a bit of nerves the first day or two, then I remember that I am actually pretty good at what I do, despite my inexperience and insecurities, and I settle right in.
I wish I could go back to school, even just part time. I want my MA, and I'm not even sure I care what it's in at this point. I go back and forth between English/Lit and Education, or Technology in the Classroom. I really like the idea of taking Tech in the Classroom, and Penn State offers a lot of online options for that course of study. Too bad I'm broke and can't take out student loans atm. I'd still love to apply to IUP for their Comp Studies program. I think I'm not going to give up on continuing my education. For a while, I did. I think I'll make a plan. I know I can't do it in the next few years, but in 5 years' time, I'd like to be enrolled in a program. I don't know how realistic 5 years is. I just picked it off the top of my head. I'll have to take a closer look at our plan to come up with a realistic time frame.
The truth is, it's more of an optionfor my future now than it might have been previously. Previous to what? To a pretty big decision that J and I recently made. Though we're taking a bit of time to make sure I'm certain about it before we actually take medical steps, we've come to the conclusion that we will not have children. J was never to keen on the idea, though he always said if I wanted kids he'd be ok with it, but he'd prefer to get a boat.
For a while, I thought I'd really like to have children. When I went through my surgery this past spring, it really got me thinking a lot about it because there was the small chance that it could interfere with my ability to succesfully carry to term. I freaked out at the idea that I might not be able to have children. Once my surgery was over, and my follow up went ok, I started to think that maybe it wouldn't be such an awful thing to be childfree. When I was younger (late teens, early 20s) I said I didn't want kids, and meant it. Sometime in my mid 20s, one day I would think I wanted to be a mom one day, and the next day, I wouldn't.
Now, I'm back to thinking that a life without children would suit me best. It's nice that J feels similarly. I'm still working some of it out for myself. I just don't want to regret making the decision permanent (i.e. sterilization for either of us). However, I don't want to be stuck taking the pill for much longer. I've been on it for many, many years, and I would like to go off it and let my body do its thing.
The thought of pregnancy itself completely turns me off. Sure, it's great for some women, but I don't really want a huge belly, breasts leaking, nausea, cravings, labor, delivery, episiotomy, healing. Then comes 3am feedings, burping, puking, pooing, potty training, tons of money on diapers, formula, toys, and clothes. Then you worry about what they are learning, what they aren't learning, behavior, education, influences, drugs, sex, drinking, driving, paying for college, ugh. And all that while you're stuck. By the time you're finished 'raising' your children, you've missed the most vital years of your life and finally make that trip to Egypt when you're too old to handle the heat.
I know, I make it sound awful, and there are many rewards that come with being a parent. The ability to shape someone's character, love them unconditionally, and find joy in their life is priceless. Many parents will say it's all worth it. Maybe for them, but I'm not so sure it'd be worth it for me.
At some point in my life, I'd like to enjoy financial freedom. I'd like to know I can spend money doing things J and I want to do. I'd like to know that after a long, rewarding day at work, I could come home and spend my time doing what I want to do rather than tending to someone else's needs/wants. I want the luxury of a long weeikend or an extended vacation without worrying if we have enough cash for our kid to attend college, or if there is anyone wh o can sit with them, or having to drag them along to places I'd rather explore on my own terms. I want to spend time on continuing my education, not spending evenings on middle school grammar or high school algebra homework. I want to have sex with J anywhere in the house I want at any time I want, without having to sneak around so the kids don't hear/see.
I do not deny that I have some nurturing instincts. However, they are usually satisfied by caring for my cat, or making dinner or cookies (or both) for J and me. After a few hours with my friends' children, I'm usually at my limit. I'm ready for their kids to go away. Supposedly it's 'different when you have your own,' but I'm not so sure I'm willing to risk that being untrue.
So, J gets a boat (and probably some super duper gaming computer), and I get a shi-tzu (sp?), and a trip to Egypt. We both get our library, our trip to Ireland, and a life dedicated to enjoying each other and all the world has to offer, without the worry and struggle that comes with raising children (and the physical stress on my body). Hmmm...doesn't sound so bad. I still wonder what's with J and the boat thing, though!