I’ve been trying to figure out how to answer this one for awhile, actually. Hopefully my response does it the justice it deserves.
Ever since I was small, that’s been the one thing I’ve wanted to do. Whether or not that desire stemmed from what was ultimately expected of me in the future, I’m not entirely sure. I honestly don’t care. I think my viewpoints on the situation would have been the same regardless of how or where I was raised. I’ve always felt like it was something I was meant to do, something that was ingrained in me from the very beginning. Perhaps even a calling, if you will. Either way, I always felt my role in the future was somehow related to motherhood and all it’s maternal glory.
I’ve gotten some not-very-nice-things said to me because of this. How I should push myself more, how I should focus on school and getting a degree and changing the world. How my desire to be a mother- solely a mother- was degrading feminism and the matriarchal role in society. How my own viewpoints are setting back feminism in the world by several decades.
I want to share a couple of things with you. I don’t want to be a mother because it’s the “womanly” thing to do. I don’t want to be a mother because I feel that society is pushing gender roles on me and I’m morally obligated to be a mother because of that. I don’t want to be a mother because I was told I would accomplish nothing else in life and my services would be best rendered in the home, cleaning and cooking and changing diapers.
Parenthood is one of the most noble and rewarding careers on the face of this earth. Think about it- you are sacrificing most of the rest of your life and devoting it to these tiny people. These tiny human beings. These tiny people that you have the responsibility to mold and change and shape and teach. These tiny people that will eventually grow to be adults and maybe find the cure for cancer, maybe develop a new type of space shuttle or write a top selling novel. Parenthood, motherhood, fatherhood, is about sacrifice, and the ultimate kind of sacrifice. It is giving up so much of what you love to be a mother or a father. Losing countless hours of sleep, money, time, and other things that would be extremely profitable in the real world. But that kind of sacrifice deals the greatest rewards. To watch your child’s first steps? To hear them speak their first words, words that you taught them? Watching them in their first play, seeing them graduate high school- knowing that you were one of the reasons they were there in the first place?
I want to be a mother to experience all that. I’m not even a mother and I’m already making sacrifices for my future children. My dream job is to be an archeologist. But realistically speaking, it would be impossible for me to be a stay-at-home mother and an archeologist at the same time. So I decided on being an educator instead. Because I want to be able to give my future children the best lives that I possibly can because I love them so much already and they don’t even entirely exist yet.
So why do I want to be a mother? Because it’s the most rewarding job on the face of the earth and I honestly can’t imagine myself doing anything else.