Not a single one of us was ready to have a kid. My three best friends and I were all pregnant within one year of each other. The men we were pregnant by had no idea what to do next. When the pregnancy test read positive. It said one thing to the doctor, and another thing to the person who peed on the stick. To the doctor it read, “Test positive for the medical condition of pregnancy.” I don’t know how a man feels. I don’t know how every woman feels. But for us it meant, “You’ve been chosen. It gets to be your turn.”
We all had established certain ideas, and beliefs, on how a good mother makes choices. There were scattered examples of good parenting all around us. There were examples a plenty of what not to do, as well.
We gave up on our idea of adulthood for a little while. Instead, we formed ideal childhoods for our children to experience. Their birthdays would be bigger. Their experiences would be more vast and intense. Their travels would expound and be rich with culture. All the music would be of the highest, most portentous order. Theater, art, science, would saturate our homes. They would have values, morals, confidence, intellect, and most importantly- engaged parents.
Then they were born. They were so cool. They were so weird. They came with funky allergies and hangups and complications. Paternity never worked out like it was supposed to. Marriages couldn’t be counted on. Jobs, education, houses, cities, persona’s, changed often. But, our commitment to our children, our Legacy, would prevail at all costs.
Somehow, we survived their childhood. We cultivated unique young men and women. They are self-aware; compassionate, cultured, intelligent, wildly talented, empathetic, generous, genuine, and creative young adults. That part of the journey has ended.
The adventure doesn’t end at eighteen though, does it?
The first wedding is this weekend. She was born first, so it seems right. She is marrying a good man. No hang-ups, no complications. Her paternity will work out like it’s supposed to. Her marriage will be one she can count on. Her education, career, lifestyle, have been established and are not going away. Soon, they will buy their first home together. Then another generation will come and continue our Legacy. It is one that I am proud to pass on, and I am relieved that so are they.