I'm trying to get the time off to go to my hometown this month. My cousin is having her new daughter baptized in a couple weeks. So far I've not heard a peep about whether or not I'll be able to go.
I'm pretty jazzed to see the new addition to the family. Out of about 11 grandkids, she's the only one who's procreated, and only one of two who've gotten married. The oldest of us is almost 40 and the youngest is 24. And that 24-year-old up until recently was the youngest member of the family. We're not the most prolific bunch.
Other than my cousin the new mom, I'm the only female on this side. Now, the aunts have teased the eldest cousin, a dude who's pushing 40 and likes to date 'em young, about settling down, but other than his mother, there's not a lot of concern there. He's a man. He has time.
I find there's a lot more concern directed at me about my future family planning. It's not an overwhelming thing, just a slow steady drumbeat of inquiry and questions about my marital plans in the future. This is part of what being a woman is: Fielding questions about the potential for new life.
The Dude's father cautioned him to hold his horses, get settled and secure first. And that's father-son stuff right there. Be a man, provide, offer stability. What women-to-women conversations usually involve is when are you planning to get married? When do you think you'll have kids? I'd feel bad about it, except I understand where it's coming from. It's my uterus, after all.
I wonder what my mom would be telling me. I don't have anyone suggesting I ought to have kids now or be married, only inquiries about when it can be expected. My mom, though, I think she'd have a more invested opinion. She waited. She was almost 32 when she had me. But she also married the wrong man. So who knows.
I like to think she'd be advising me to do exactly what I'm doing: waiting, working, enjoying myself. My cousin is in her 30s for her first. You know, it's entirely possible that she'll have two before I have one. And I'm totally okay with that.