It took a while for me to come around to the idea of having little people in my life.
In fact, for years, I was resolutely “no-way, José” (just kidding, his name wasn’t really José) but then something changed. I can’t put my finger on what, exactly, but something did. I’ll come back to this in a moment but first of all, as I’m talking about women’s “need” to reproduce, I want to be super clear about something:
I’m not saying all women feel the need to have children … and there’s no judgement here if you don’t feel the urge to have kids. That being said, my standpoint is that we don’t just create human babies. Working on a project is akin to growing a baby; sending it out into the world is like giving birth. We all nourish “babies”, my business is a baby … my plants are my (withering) babies. So if you’re reading this and not into the idea of breeding, you may want to read it from the perspective of the creative process, because that is a need as well.
Back to me.
When I started working as a birth doula, I was 25, managed a late-night rock bar in Soho, and was uninterested in having kids. Now, I’m 33, in bed nice and early, and game on the kids front (those sentences aren’t as linked as they seem). Did supporting families during the childbirth year influence things? I’m sure it did.
Regardless of whether you’re trying to conceive or not, each period can bring with it a sense of loss or grief. Sound bonkers? I assure you, it’s not. I’m not trying to get knocked up, but once my bleed (my personal choice of terminology for menstruation) arrives, my spirit recognises that there’s been a missed opportunity. There’s one less egg in the box, and although I know there’s way more than a dozen tucked away in there, it’s a *little* unnerving to see them disappear down the toilet month after month, literally and figuratively.
For many women, the desire to breed is a biological need.
And that’s what people forget. It’s *not* a cerebral decision, it’s *not* about playing house, it’s *not* a desire that you can magic away. You are not a cliché with a ticking clock.
Men, and their balls.
Ladies, I’m sure you’re aware of this already (and if not, get ready for the newsflash), but men need to – ahem – release the pressure on a regular basis. Yes, they *need* to ejaculate. It’s mother nature’s clever way of ensuring the best guys are in the pipes, ready for action.
It’s the same for us.
Ok, so for the purpose of this post, I’m separating out sexual appetite and yearning for a family. I am *not* saying that the female equivalent of a man shooting his load is a woman having a baby. Hell no.
Evolutionary biology means that procreation has been hardwired into our physiology, so let’s not minimise or judge how craving a child can dominate a woman’s life. Because it can, in every possible way. Whether she’s fourteen or forty, once a woman decides she wants a family, the way she views and makes decisions about her life changes. Her relationship with herself shifts, as well as those with others.
Wanting a family.
It’s primal: There’s no getting away from it. By its definition, it is “of first importance”.
It’s painful: Longing for a family can physically ache, and it can be a factor in some women’s period pain.
It’s unreasonable: Inappropriate partner / no partner / broke / just got your dream job. Guess what? Your body doesn’t care. It just demands to know, “where’s the goddamn baby?!”
Got baby fever?
I’d love to give you five tips to help matters, but I don’t have five. I can tell you that before a baby is potty-trained, you will have to change roughly 7,000 nappies (diapers for the Americans), does that put you off? No, me neither. In fact, I’m guessing that some of you would probably jump at the chance to deal with the “richness” of a toddler’s poo-pancakes.
Something useful for you.
This is a juicy topic, and it’s not always an easy one to chat about with partners / friends / family, but talking can help to lighten the load, or at least get started on that path. I’ve had so many of my clients unload when they step into my treatment room; the “empty womb” bag is a heavy one to carry.
If you’d like to speak to me about your menstrual health and fertility, I’m offering free 20 minute consultations over the phone or Skype, and I would love to chat with you if this article resonated with you. There won’t be any hard-selling from me. What I will do (with your permission) is put you to the front of the queue for a new programme which I’m opening up next month, so you’ll get first dibs if it feels like a good fit for you. It’s also a great way to suss me out if you’re thinking of coming for some treatments.
Interested? Then head here and holla.
Dates for your diary:
I’m away on residential courses April 28th – May 3rd & May 6th – 8th, so if you want an appt with me, you can come and see me at Sadhaka on the 5th (morning only) and 9th (all day). Back to normal week commencing May 12th.
May 10th & 11th: I’ll be co-facillitating a women’s health weekend at Sadhaka Yoga Centre. Keep your eyes peeled for the details.