I’m a new parent – and new parents have to learn to roll with the punches. Between the spit up, the unpredictable sleep schedule, and the emotional toll parenthood takes on you, I’ve dealt with my share of curveballs. But I have to admit, the biggest surprise of all has been the fact that my state’s government forced me to bring this child into the world against my will and better judgment.
Now that’s something they don’t teach you in health class!
Learning to care for a newborn can be confusing and frustrating. But what’s even more bewildering is being abandoned by the lawmakers who had once seemed so invested in my baby’s life. Gestating a child I was in no way prepared to care for, without access to safe housing, psychological support, or any of the resources necessary for creating a healthy environment was not exactly what I signed up for. Actually, I didn’t sign up for anything, because I didn’t have the right to – cause the biggest surprise to me about parenting is that legally, I am a mere vessel forced to carry out this pregnancy.
I’ve been reading mommy blogs and browsing parenting message boards, so I’ve found plenty of tips about how to make all-natural baby food, how to perfect my swaddling technique, and how to baby-proof my apartment. Unfortunately, I haven’t come across much advice for anyone who, despite not being prepared for parenthood, has been forced to become a mom by a nameless, faceless entity that will never know the impact of its policies on the people they affect. Still looking, though!
In retrospect, it was a given that as a woman of child-bearing age, I would have had to make serious decisions about my future at some point—specifically, whether or not I would ever want to be a parent. What I didn’t know was that by having sex at all, I was forfeiting my decision-making power and handing it over to the government, which, despite being made up overwhelmingly of crusty old white men who don’t know the first thing about women’s bodies, seems to know more about what’s best for my body and my future than I do.
To sum it all up, what everyone says about parenthood is true: nothing compares to the onslaught of emotions you experience when your child is born…nothing except perhaps the onslaught of emotions you experience when a doctor tells you that you’re pregnant, and regardless of the quality of your support system, financial standing, and emotional health, you have no say in the matter!