Monthly Archives: May 2015

Gathering worms

babybirdsA pair of wrens is nesting in the porch beams. Mama wren arrives with a live worm in her beak and the nest erupts in frantic chirping and squeaking as four tiny heads on long thin necks shoot out, blind eyes open, beaks stretched wide to receive. Quickly she pops bits of worm into the open mouths and flits away for more, just as dad arrives with another juicy morsel. He feeds, they switch off, and so it goes, from dawn to sunset.

Soon the nest will be stuffed with bodies and the chicks will take wing. The porch will go quiet for a while. In spring the wrens will be back, to lay a new clutch of eggs and do it again. Not a bad life, for a bird.

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Confronting pity

heart and headI received this email from a woman yesterday:

I’m 50 and child-free (rather than child-less). It wasn’t a decision that I made, it’s just what ended up happening. But I’m happy that I don’t have kids.

I’ve recently started volunteering in palliative care, talking with folks that are near the end of their life. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had people say “so, how many children do YOU have?” & when I reply “none” they literally get teary-eyed and say how sorry they feel for me.

Because I’m dealing with folks that are dying, I haven’t spoken up, and need help with a recommendation (or two) on what I can possibly say that is respectful to them, but makes me come out of the conversation feeling ok (& not sad & depressed).

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Happy Non-Moms Day: Birth Announcement

_2MS-0957Happy (Non) Mothers Day—it’s a blog! A healthy bouncing 10-megabyte website. All full of piss and vinegar, and bound for a wild ride.

This baby has been a long time in the belly. It was conceived with the Egg Club: a little gang of women who gathered years back in my East Van apartment to talk about our experiences as childless women in this world. There were many brilliant and funny words, tough stories, great snacks. But what struck me most were the faces of the women in the circle. Continue reading

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Portrait: Megan Adam

meganMegan Adam
Age 41 Vancouver, BC
Communications professional, musician, handcrafter, social activist 

Not long after I got together with my partner Brian, he went out and booked himself an appointment for a vasectomy. I still had some feelings about no longer having the “choice” about children. I wasn’t feeling a strong urge to have kids at the time, and even though we had talked about it before (and I had encouraged him to get the snip), I wasn’t sure.

So as a way to buffer that, we agreed to bank some of his sperm, ‘just in case.’ We joked about offering his goods to some lesbian women we knew who wanted to conceive—hey, it’s great sperm! He’s smart, good looking… But that didn’t happen. So then just last year, we got this letter from the fertility clinic, saying they were shutting down. And did we want to have the sperm sent to another clinic. We kind of looked at each other and said…nah, flush it. It’s done.

For me, the biological clock was a temporary insanity, like having an alien take over my body and mind. At the time it felt so strong and so permanent, like it would last forever. But it didn’t. It was agonizing at the time. But it passed and I’m certainly not feeling anything like the regret that some people told me I would have.

<excerpted from Megan’s story from One in Five Portraits>

Photo by Wendy D Photography (wendyd.ca)

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by | May 8, 2015 · 8:56 pm

Deadbeat auntie

I’m a deadbeat auntie.

It happens again and again: my friends have babies, and they want me to be part of their kids’ lives. We set up a schedule. We go on outings. We have sleepovers. But then the kids grows into adolescence, families move away, schedules change, or single parents find new partners to fill the auntie gap. I disappear for a week, a month, a year. I fail to show up for birthday parties. I drift away.

I get interested in a child for a while, but when the kid loses interest in me, I shrug and move on. I don’t have any biological nieces or nephews so there are no blood ties to perpetuate the relationship. Continue reading

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Shit young moms say to non-moms

A Young Dad once said to me: “You’ll never know what love is until you have a child.” That is the kinda shit that really pisses a Non-Mom off.

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by | May 1, 2015 · 11:21 pm