Monday, December 17, 2007


"My daughter's not going to have children, the world is too terrible a place to raise them."  commented one of my clients at the Y.  Of note, this client has lived through the Great Depression, a world war, multiple "police actions", a cold war, food shortages, gas lines, communists threats and plague and pestilence.  Perhaps a more fitting statement is, "I'm not going to have children because I don't have the guts to work hard and prevail as you did mom, and I've pretty much given up on the world and insulated myself into my lonely but safe little cocoon. "  In my estimate, we have children for the very reason of the state of the world today; we fight back.  In my own little microcosm, my children bring me great joy and make each day worth living.  They make me want to be a better person.  They and their counterparts are why I steward my resources, why I recycle, why I conserve, why I vote and remain politically active, why I volunteer at school and why I notice all of the other children around me and one of the reasons I have great hope that the future is bright.  I suspect my client wants grandchildren and her daughter, having the sense to know she doesn't want to reproduce and is quite content owning her own business, has thrown her mom the only bone she might gnaw on and carry around to all of her luncheons and bridge outings.  What disappoints me is my client is content to gnaw.  And beyond gnawing, to encourage others to join her at the carcass.  I expect better from her generation.  I expect better from my generation-both those who choose to reproduce and those who choose to not.  Clearly you don't have to have children to be a good citizen, my client proves that point, you just have to be willing to look beyond today.  Is it as simple a choice as the eagle and the vulture?  

End of soap box.  

Christmas is coming, yea!  Christmas break, yea!  Too much to do, too little time, always.  But, I managed to squeak in a 5 mile run (yes run, albeit slow) and a 2500 yard swim and 400 yard aqua run.  The Otterbox is awesome, with one exception-where to put the darn thing.  Right now it goes inside the front of my suit- a little awkward, especially at the end of my swim when I have to choose between walking around the pool deck with a third bulge and fishing the thing out discreetly.  

Have a Merry week


Brent Buckner said...

See also "Voluntary Human Extinction Movement".

It takes an awful lot to overwrite or override the material improvements in the living conditions of humans (cf. _The Skeptical Environmentalist_ or _The Ultimate Resource_) but folks manage it.

Putting such aside, Merry Christmas to you and yours!

21stCenturyMom said...

I remember thinking I would never have kids because the world was surely going to end before they could grow up. And then the world just went along and I got pregnant. And I couldn't agree more about the joys of parenthood.

Merry Christmas to you and yours.

greyhound said...

A little story about how children bring light, hope and optimism into the dark.

When my grandfather was in Mercy Hospital over Thanksgiving, he was on a floor with very very sick people who (like he) were probably never going to fully recover. The atmosphere could be awful.

BUT, every time a baby was born in the far off maternity ward of that hospital, the speakers all over the mammoth facility quietly chimed little bells playing the Brahms lullaby.

Children, especially babies, are the candle in the dark, a tiny fist shaken in death's face, a defiant joy.

IronTriTim said...

Thanks trimama, "what am I bringing them into" type thought has crossed my mind with our twins on the way but as you say we fight back, and since I know we are having twins I have wanted to become an even better person.

Taconite Boy said...

wow heavy....I officially volunteer to remove your ipod for you ??

Fe-lady said...

Children...they teach us so much about ourselves and the world.
Can't live without them.
My own and other peoples'.....

Merry Christmas!

Bigun said...

and yet, sooo many people should NOT be parents that are - not everyone is cut out for the job. One may not have the strength of character to be able to know it, deep down, and admit that you are not the one for parenthood; the easy out is to blame the world instead of admit a shortcoming.

Lana said...

Yay on the run and the aqua jog!!