I Made a Baby (With Someone Who Thinks I'm the Worst)
I made a baby with a person who didn't like me. Not even the slightest bit. Maybe my title here is a tad assuming... but I suspect he thinks I'm the ABSOLUTE WORST.
I wonder how my son will interpret those two sentences when he is older. I laid groundwork by letting him know its okay for people to break up. That love can change and morph into something else entirely. It feels the most fair to both him and myself. And it spares the rod for his father. I feel comfortable assuring him people are dynamic creatures.
My ex-husband stopped loving me long before my child came into being. Maybe that’s not fair to say but I said it. So there!
He loved me enough to try and make it work—but loving two people is absolute torture. But I do recall times when we actually liked one another, enjoyed wine and pizza, and making dinner together in one of our many tiny kitchens.
Our marriage ended terribly but it wasn’t all bad. It took years for me to allow myself to utter that phrase. I clung to the narrative it was never good. Our dynamic relationship absolutely teetered along lines of dysfunction and toxicity for its entirety. We fought often, we spent too much money, and we resented one another for past hurts we refused to actually address. We smiled, we cried, and we ran away from reality. He literally ran and I managed to find friends to occupy my time along with an exercise routine. Sprinkle in decades of gas lighting, depression, poor self-esteem, infertility and we crumbled.
I should have known. My best friend refused to be my maid of honor at my wedding, urging me to call off the wedding and start fresh with someone healthy: to learn to love myself more than a relationship status.
My ex and I only knew each other--- so pulling the plug on our marriage mostly felt like dental work done with a spoon and fork. We tried. Several times. We failed. We broke up. We changed.
People often ask me how I feel being a mother to one child and divorced. How does not having a husband feel? Do I regret not having more? Do I regret not getting married to someone else and having a child with them?
Sure. And that’s okay. I don’t mind not having more. I cherish the little moments with my child to a different degree. Because I know the firsts we have are my only. That changes a person.
I don’t mind not rushing to the altar—I see second marriages cave under the pressure of blending and finances. I cherish this time building my own self sufficiency. While difficult and wrought with stress I can say I accomplished this without embarking on a dead end marriage to manage my financial woes. I’m serious; many people offer marriage or getting a boyfriend that doesn’t mind paying the bills as a viable solution to the struggle of single motherhood. I fought hard to not be the stereotype. I’m proud of that and I think my partner is also proud of me too.
When it comes to having one child sometimes I regret not cuddling longer, not taking more pictures, and not throwing bigger parties with more grandeur. I kick myself for not keeping precious items or writing down more or taking videos to litter my Facebook feed.
When you divorce and decide to not have more children you do sacrifice certain elements. Holidays will never be the same. Bank accounts stay ripe for annual picking.
More so I’ll never know what it’s like to have a baby with someone who loves me or likes me. I won’t have cute pictures and stories to share about when he lived in my belly; his daddy wasn’t there. I won’t know what an actual baby shower feels like, the sensation of holding the hand of his father at birth, and the joy of bringing home your child with a spouse.
And honestly, it’s okay.
If I spent my waking hours pining over what I should have had I’d lack the ability to celebrate what I do have: a sweet, curious child with blonde hair that looks exactly like his father. And when I look at him I see the times our relationship didn’t spiral. I see the one good thing we managed to do together.