I have always wanted to be a mom and now that ‘it’s time’ the conundrum I face is this. I was type A from the time I was born until about 4 years ago when I turned 26. I was a very serious child, I always felt as responsible as a grown up, I was born feeling 45 years old. My father was the fun-loving alcoholic and I was his strict mother constantly trying to real him in. That mothering tendency turned into a pathological tendency to ‘mother’ everyone around me. It also somehow meant that perfection in my mind was a realistic goal. From the time I can remember I have always heard, ‘she is so mature for her age.’ By the time I was 26 I was exhausted. I no longer had the energy or desire to ‘take care of people’ or the desire to climb to the top of my “not for profit field” (yet somehow I still wound up being an executive director at 29). I had dated all kinds of people, and at age 25 I had fallen in love with the man I would marry, an emotionally strong character who is the opposite of draining (unlike all the other needy people I had been drawn to in my early 20s). So what’s my conundrum? The conundrum is I am just now realizing how to be young myself. Not in that “inner-child” touch-feely way. Well maybe in that way, but after too many AA meetings with my father that term makes me nauseous. I had to spend most of my childhood helping my father find his inner child which to me wasn’t very inner... the child in him was quite obvious. In any event, I now feel like I am ready to play...for the first time. I want to learn to sing, to create, to act, and I still have strong delusions of becoming a famous rock star/comedian/actor. I want to take classes, try, attempt, practice, give up, fail, and just explore all kinds of creative modes and I try with all my might to “do art” without the idea in the back of my mind that I have to get it “right.” How can you get art right you ask? Somehow I have a way of telling myself in a very black and white way that I am completely wrong or right about things. I am bad or good. I have days where I am beautiful or ugly. Apparently its an ACOA thing. In any event... I am ‘tracking myself.’ I want to have kids not much past the age of 35 because even though its totally possible, what they told us 10 years ago about how our generation shouldn’t worry about what age we have kids, and that waiting till 40 is fine...well it turns out that’s not so true all the time and even though I have always always dreamed of being pregnant and tending to a little baby that would be all mine (ok more mine since it came out of me?), I am wondering how I am to reconcile FINALLY learning how to relax a little, enjoy being more carefree and less responsible... and know that if I want to avoid being an older mother, now is the time for me to make a child myself? I am just now realizing that I could have spent my 20’s on a beach in Greece and my life could have turned out just fine. Instead I spent them in search of resume builders and constant fear of ‘not making it’ Whatever the hell that meant. I thought you were supposed to me lazy, care free, and whimsical in your 20s? And now that I realized I spent them with too many goals, too many plans, too much focus on ‘my future,’ I realize that I want to slow down, enjoy the present, take a trip to Greece, quit a job without a back up plan... but I don’t want to do all that instead of being a youngish mom. And even if I waited a year or two, and tried to be ‘carefree’ I know I wouldn’t be able to give it all up, my security, my nest, my life that is set up perfectly to welcome a little baby into be cared for comfortably. Does it all come down to security? Is this warm home and healthy relationship I am in the fruit of my laborious 20s and ‘responsible’ life style? Or did my parents care-free-food stamp-relying-hippy-dippy-shoot-from-our-hip-lifestyle scare me into a lifestyle with less whims, less care-free, and less spontaneity. Could it be a grass is greener?