Choosing to Parent
When I was 33, I found myself unmarried and pregnant. This was not a disaster or a dilemma for me since I had a good job, made my own money, had been married, and already had a child. I knew that I wanted more children, and did not feel that I needed to be married to accomplish that. I had already been there and done that as far as marriage was concerned. And, I knew what it took to endure the diapers, disease, and pertinence that accompanies children.
Nonetheless, making the decision to have a child in my circumstances was still an unconventional move. While Murphy Brown had successfully delivered and nurtured her daughter alone, choosing to be a single mom required bravery and convention. In truth, simply choosing to be a mom requires bravery and conviction, doing it single simply takes a bit more.
My second child was successfully delivered on a July day in 1991. Two of my best girlfriends served as my birth coaches. One brought a bottle of champagne which we popped open to celebrate the birth. The father was not present, or particularly interested, a pattern that he established early.
Single parenting was the most frightening and liberating thing I have ever done; frightening because you know you are in this alone, and you must bear the consequences of your decision, no matter the costs; liberating because every decision is yours alone to make, no discussion or compromise. Your responsibility is larger and your freedom greater, requiring a trickier balance.
This is not journey for the faint of heart. It is one that if you are lucky, will lead you to the greatest loves of your life.