By Kimberly Zapata
When I was five or six years old, I begged my mother to have another baby. I already had a brother — and a younger brother, at that — but we were so close in age that I never got the chance to change his diapers or hold his wriggling newborn body, and I wanted a baby. A baby baby. And while I don’t know what I said, or how I broached the subject, I do know that I swore to take care of it. I would feed it; I would bathe it; I would “raise it” as my own.
But instead of having another baby, my mother bought me a goldfish. Instead of having another baby, my mother bought me another baby doll.
And while my mother may have been done having kids, it was around this age that I began obsessing about having my own family. You know, my future family: my husband, our two — or maybe three — kids, our family dog, and our picture perfect house (the one with a swing set in the backyard and a white picket fence around the front).
The good news was, I found (and married) a man whose dreams aligned with mine. I mean, I never exactly asked him if he too wanted the picket fence or the ranch-style house, but I knew he wanted children. I knew we both wanted kids.
However, since we were young when we married, we didn’t jump right into the whole parenting thing. Instead, we took time to enjoy our relationship. We took time to enjoy each other, as husband and wife.
Unfortunately, sometime after our wedding, but before our second or third anniversary, things changed. My mind changed, and I began to question parenthood altogether. And soon, I became absolutely terrified by the prospect of becoming a mom.