Popcorn at a movie… Turkey at Thanksgiving… These are only a couple of life’s “givens.” No one questions you if you indulge in that oh-so-wonderful buttery popcorn during the weekend matinee. In fact, they expect it. After all, what’s a movie without popcorn? And, heavens, what’s Thanksgiving without a turkey?!
In life, we are often expected to do certain things or follow a certain path just because that’s the path most people before us have followed.
I remember when I was younger, my dad sang in a quartet with a man – a hilariously stoic man – who was well-past the point at which most people start a family. He was married, and they were very happy. For whatever reason, though, many people (including myself) couldn’t focus on their happiness. No, all they seemed to think about was why they didn’t have children and why they didn’t seem to want to have children.
Only now do I realize the great mistake in assumptions. What if that couple simply decided that having children just wasn’t for them. Or worse, what if they had tried and tried but had major difficulties? Should reproduction – life’s single greatest miracle – really be a given?
So far, I’ve followed the politically correct path. I went to college out of high school. I graduated in a respectable timeframe. I met a wonderful man. I got a job. I married that wonderful man.
The next step would seem quite obvious – even to a toddler. However, as I start to hear baby murmurings at family functions, I realize that I’m starting to take offense. If and when we do decide that we truly want children, our family and friends will be the first to know. Until then, perhaps it might be best to just be happy with where we’re at.
Some things in life should simply not be givens.