I’ve been married almost ten years now, and the question that I dread is the one that everyone feels they need to ask. “When are you having kids?” My answer inevitably perplexes people. “I’m not going to have kids.”
That must be the weirdest thing a woman can say because most people follow up my answer with the confused head tilt, and then a hundred follow up questions. Most people are confused because, in their words, “But you seem so good with children.”
Yes, I love children. I think they’re great, wonderful, beautiful, adorable etc. I have two nephews and five nieces and I can’t get enough of them. Just because being a mother is not my plan for my life, doesn’t automatically mean that I don’t like children. I’ve heard from a wide variety of mother’s, how drastically children have changed their lives. And after the typical rant about how they didn’t realize their lives would be so different, or how they have absolutely not one minute to themselves, or how they just want to take a nap, or how maybe they wouldn’t have kids if they could do it over, they always end the conversation with, “But it’s the most rewarding amazing experience and I never knew I could love someone this much.”
My response is good for you, but it’s not for me.
The lines are clear
as are the expectations
and the feeling of fear
Is it worth it to reach
so far beyond
was it really so bleak
back where I was from
The desire for dreams
leads out into unknown
and the instinct for peace
brings the comforts of home
I live in a community where no one needs to lie. There’s no reason for it anymore. I do not worry about offending someone, or hiding what I’m doing or thinking. Our society is no longer worried about superficiality. We’ve moved on, because we had to. And now, we would never go back to the way things were.
After past generations misused the earth’s resources, mass deaths occurred at alarming rates. Tsunami’s killed off the islanders and the people in coast towns. Volcanoes and earthquakes took care of the rest. Nearly one million people survived despite the amazing power of mother nature. From those one million we began weeding out the bad people. The people who would not assimilate to our new society.
The original founders of my community believed that change was necessary going forward, and that people could never go back to the selfish existence once lived. Not everyone agreed with this. Some survivors did not like the idea of being told what to do, of being told how to live, of having to think of others first. So there was war.
This war lasted until the remaining opposing survivors agreed to the communities rules. The original founders of my community agreed to let the opposing survivors join. But this came with consequences. In an effort to weed out selfish, deceitful genetics, our founders created a decree. In this decree, individuals that consistently display these undesirable characteristics will be sterilized. Oh, and they have to follow the same rules as everyone else.
The rules of the community are simple: 1. Everyone must contribute what they can 2. Barter and work exchange are the only currency allowed 3. Violence of any kind will not be tolerated 4. Self-importance will not be tolerated 5. We are all equal
Everything else gets worked out. In the beginning, after the earth had settled back into peace, life was the most simple. People searched. People searched for resources, for other people, and for shelter. Once the most basic needs were being met, people began trying to fill other needs. That’s when the war began. Our founders were the most intelligent people that had survived. As the community grew, so too did our founders resources. They had created safeguards for the people’s survival, and created the decree so that greed wouldn’t lead to destruction ever again.
What a great thought. There is enough love, enough kindness, enough freedom for everyone.
When we stop thinking about life in a negative light, a new world is opened up.
What do you have in your life to be grateful for?
What do you complain about, and what will you do to make it different?
Stop focusing on what you don’t have or what you don’t want. If you are anti-war, be pro peace instead. If you are anti hunger, be pro abundance instead. Find a way to focus on the positive light, there’s always a way to be positive.
Being poor is different in different countries.
Being poor in America means that your supermarket shoes fall apart right away.
Being poor in Egypt means that the kids have no shoes. The roads are unpaved, and the toys are whatever is found on the road, usually a rock and a stick.
I’ve been poor in America. I married an Egyptian and thought he was exaggerating when he would talk about playing with a rock and stick for entertainment. Then I went to Egypt. I literally saw children playing with a rock and a stick, with no shoes on, and torn clothes that didn’t fit.
In the building my husband grew up in as a child live families who rely on each other to get by. The building is a tall one with a staircase in the middle, leading up to each house. At the bottom of the staircase is a small door, leading to an even smaller utility room. Living in that room is a mother with her three children. She makes her money running errands for the people in the building, and she feeds her children with any food the building’s residents can afford to give her. And even when the people have nothing, they will always give her something.
The people in Egypt have no opportunity to make $8/hr. There are no jobs, there are no opportunities, and there is no relief coming any time soon. The Egyptians bury their dead in a type of cemetery. The main difference is that each person who has passed on is buried in a type of open air room. There are four walls made up of rocks or whatever materials can be found. In my visit to this country, my husband and I witnessed families living with the dead. My husband told me, “this was not like this when I left.”
My husband was fortunate to get a visa to the United States because his country was in an extreme state. Unfortunately when he was finally able to return almost 20 years later, the country was even worse than before.
We talk about being homeless here in America. But the reality is that we’re still in America. I feel like there is hope, living here, that something could be done about poverty. We could find a way to end poverty and homelessness. As I write this I’m sure there are people working on it already.
The way life turned out is a mystery
cover my eyes, blind to see
how hard it is and how hard it’s going to be
turn it upside down
life makes sense
not likely in my cage and fence
understand how it feels
never going to heal
cover it up, it’s a new start
feeling afraid, is it just in my mind
I now understand it was you who was blind
having trouble trying to find
among the others your shining star
among the millions
don’t look too far
among the millions you have forgotten
what it is you were looking for
Love is great in theory. And that’s the problem. The assumption never lives up to reality. The reality is, it’s hard committing to someone, and even more difficult to keep yourself in that process. After ten years of marriage, I have finally started to see my spouse as a person, rather than my husband. The difference is, with my husband, I have these expectations. But when I see the person first, I’ve realized that this could’ve been easier the whole time. It’s becomes easier to understand him, to put down my defenses, and to be vulnerable. My husband is just like me, he’s scared, vulnerable, and open to getting hurt.
All that we do is out of fear. Fear of dying, fear of being alone, fear of getting hurt, fear of being rejected, fear of being abandoned or discarded, fear of the unknown, fear of change.