No Change Here

The weather has not changed.  Still hot and humid, punctuated by late summer storms.  The shift happens at the retail level.  The seasonal aisle now features notebooks and pencils; weeks ago, there was sunscreen, bug spray, and picnic coolers.  There are sales and promotions, of course.  Families are mindful of the budget.

Like the weather, my life is unchanged.  My friends post photos of their children with new lunchboxes and backpacks with #FirstDayOfKindergarten, #LookAtMyThirdGrader, and #HowDidHeGetSoBig.  Photos to document another year flown by.  For me, it is simply a reminder of yet another year without children or the promise of children.  I post nothing.

Back to school season means that other holidays will be approaching soon.  Rosh Hashanah, Sukkot, Simchat Torah, Thanksgiving.    Holidays that are happier, more joyous – overall, just better with children.  Holidays that are lonely without them.

Back to school season

Is just like any other –

Lonely for childless.

This was the most normal free stock image result for “childless”. Searching for “infertility” got me this photo of a liquor store. Image by DianaZG from Pixabay

***

Written for dVerse

73 comments

  1. Can relate. High Holidays are really tough (often brutal) times for many people, for many different reasons. Grief, loss, disabilities, neurodivergence, isolation, marginalization, lack of children or family…there’s a lot of heartbreak betwixt and between the joyful imagery. People falling through the cracks are the invisible people in our community.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. I’m sorry to read this. I came off social media in large part due to things like this — not just childlessness, but feeling left behind and alone generally. And the real world Jewish community can also be a lonely place if you don’t have the appropriate family. Thinking of you.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I get that parents of school-age children are facing unique challenges now with COVID and the mask maniacs / maskholes (they exist outside the world of school too). But that’s not really comforting to someone who really wants children, even knowing that there will be challenges and difficult situations.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Thirty-three here, same boat. Whatever’s in the grand plan, is in the grand plan. I don’t feel *terrible* about it, it’s more that I’m mourning the dwindling window of opportunity to decide what I want to do. I am Catholic and attend a traditional church where people have a lot of kids, but most of the groups I belong to are composed of old ladies so the generational gap makes it less painful, oddly enough. They’re not sending kids to school unless it’s grandkids and that’s not on my radar, so it doesn’t bug me. The friends I have closer to my age are in the childless, missed-the-boat population like myself. Honestly, I wouldn’t even bother reading those posts. I can’t think of anything more boring than reading about other people’s kids. (except reading about grandkids.) The way I look at it, this is the life I’ve been given and this is where I’ve led myself with my choices, both good and poor. From this point onward, I can only try to make better decisions that align with what I want. If it happens, it happens. If not, then I’ll bear with it.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Moving piece. May you find abundance in your life that fills any void or a way to pour your joy into other relatives, people and pursuits. There is not one gateway to joy, but many entrances. I always try to remember, way opens.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. This is terribly sad. The change to back to school season is just taken for granted. I never thought about what a sad thing it would be for childless couples and one who would love to be a mom. The holidays are obvious, but missing out on all the preparations for school? I can now see how that would make you feel sad, lonely and alienated.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s less back-to-school season itself and more just being in my 30s generally and not happy about not having children.
      I should really just delete my Facebook account. There is nothing good on Facebook except for the cat videos. I’ll just visit your blog to get my cute kitty fix.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I agree with you completely on FB. I don’t have an FB account. YouTube is also good for cute cat videos. Speaking of cute cats, have you seen my Loki-motion post from Saturday? He might be inspiring for your yoga.

        That is sad to not have children when you want them. My programmer is often depressed and a lot of it is because he’s over 50, single and he’s always wanted kids. All the women who are interested in him are menopausal, which makes him more depressed. His brother has four kids and his sister has two kids, which makes things worse for being the childless single child among his siblings. My sister is the childless one out of our family. Firtility issues.

        Liked by 2 people

        • I’ll bet you this one didn’t show up on FB. My wife teaches middle school and high school. One of the middle school students who was supposed to be home quarantined because he has covid, showed up for class with a terrible cough. My wife called his mother and asked why she sent him to school. The mom said that she has anxiety and didn’t want him at home. Right! Mom doesn’t want her kid at home sick, so she sends him to school sick. Good thinking.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Good grief. That is remarkably bad judgment. What happened to the rest of the class and your wife? Did they come down with COVID? I hope not!

          My dad is a substitute teacher. He had to quarantine after a student in one of his classes tested positive for COVID. Overall, he’s felt safe teaching and at the time, he’d had 1 shot of a 2-shot vaccine (he’s since been fully vaccinated – this was back in March/April) and he was fine. But boy was he mad!

          Liked by 1 person

        • That was yesterday. We are vaccinated, so she goes on. The teacher and sub shortage out here are so bad, that she’s had to take on an English class besides her math classes and she has been using lunch and prep to sub for other classes. Both principals and the CEO had to sub the other day she said. I heard that our big school distract with 150 schools had over 600 subs in 2019. They have 20 subs right now. it’s a mess.

          Liked by 1 person

  6. I am so sorry. It must be a kind of grief that never fades. ;-( I left social media seven years ago because of how it bizarrely exaggerated any feelings of loneliness or inadequacy. This WP site is my only nod to that part of our modern world.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I think of it as a grief that gets worse over time. Maybe at some point there’s an acceptance stage when it gets easier – I am definitely not at that stage!
      Yeah, WP also has that addictive quality of social media without all of the awfulness. Probably time to wean myself off.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I think I can feel your pain. I battled infertility due to endometriosis for long and had kids pretty late in life. The insensitive comments of people left scars.
    May your life be full and fulfilling and though I don’t know the cause of your infertility, I can only hope and pray for you. Sending you hugs.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. I wish you well. No one knows what’s in store for them. It’s one day at a time. Never despair or rely on negative assumptions. But yes, that ‘missing feeling’ cannot be erased.
    Take care and be hopeful and brave. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • I have moments of cautious optimism (emphasis on cautious) and extreme pessimism (my usual state). And it’s true that I don’t know the future, and I do still hope that adoption is an option. But yes, the missing feeling and the unknown is definitely challenging. Thank you for your kind words.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I struggled to have kids, first a husband who didn’t want kids and then endometriosis diagnosed in my thirties. My twins are IVF. I remember how hard it was in the years of trying, seeing friends have kids, and every bloody ad on TV showing mums and kids. No FB at least. I really feel for you. ❤ Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Yesterday was my 56th birthday so I stopped desiring to have children of my own long ago, but I can relate to what you’re going through. Even today still, whenever I meet someone new, one of the first questions they ask is “do you have children”? Sigh. My usual response is “I have fur babies”. Years back when a friend commented that she didn’t know if she wanted to bring children into this dark world, I thought “the world NEEDS my kids”. That’s when I realized the time and effort I spend being a mentor (or spiritual mother) had such a profound and eternal impact on both me and them. When I look at it that way, I have lots of kids. Be blessed my sweet friend. I am praying G-d will open your womb.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m glad you’ve been able to find fulfillment as a mentor/spiritual mother/pet mother to wonderful fur babies. All very meaningful roles. Society puts (in my opinion, too much) emphasis on biological motherhood, but it is true that there are many other important roles to play. Still, I do hope to raise children. Thank you for your kind blessing.

      PS. Happy birthday!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. […] I wish I would have been a better listener. I remember the time several years ago, when you became emotional over not having had children of your own. I hugged you, but I didn’t really identify. I wasn’t a great listener then because at the time, I wasn’t sure I wanted children and if I changed my mind, I was confident they would happen because I was young. Now I do. […]

    Like

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