It was a cold day in January,
leaves rustling in the trees,
dried and crackly falling to the ground,
littering the sidewalks and curbs.
We walked along in silence,
hand in hand, both of us
wrapped up in our own thoughts;
I looked up at a gray slate of sky,
No sun to be seen and
it began to feel colder;
I pulled my hand away to button up
my jacked and reached into my pockets
to find woolen gloves–but now
I couldn’t feel the warmth of his hand;
Maybe it was just as well.
“Do you think you will ever change your mind?”
I asked him, finally.
“No,” he replied firmly. “My childhood was grim
enough. I don’t want to take any genetic chances
bringing a child into this world…”
“I never imagined myself being childless forever”
I said with a catch in my throat–I didn’t want to cry
but I felt the tears welling up. “I was willing to wait
until we got on in the world, with our jobs, buying
a house–but–” Now I felt the tears rolling down
cold cheeks. “I don’t want to be childless forever–
I want to start a family now!”
He turned slightly towards me but made no move to
touch my hand. “So go ahead and do it” he said,
“Women are going to infertility facilities and
getting pregnant on their own–you read about it
all the time. But not my sperm and not with me..
I for one don’t mind being childless at all.”
With that he walked away towards his car at the
entrance to the park. I was stunned by his remarks
–but for the first time I thought I CAN do this by
myself. I don’t need a husband to have a baby.
I can do it by myself!
I wiped away the tears and found myself smiling.
Not for ME to remain childless!
Sandra Lee Smith
originally posted March 14, 2015
Updated July 24, 2018