Whether you’re as barren as the Mohave or have swimmers that are about as mobile as I am after leg night, I share your pain my childless brothers and sisters… Cast to the outskirts of society like smokers are now; having to put up with the mosquitoes in the summer or cold blooded mosquitoes in the winter (couldn’t think of any wintery insects,) because smokers are deemed as an ‘other’ now, I now find myself in your ranks. Or probably not that at all.
Okay so let’s start this that as an uncle many times over, I get that that doesn’t count as actually having children. My financial obligations include birthday’s, holidays, graduations, TMart spamming, movies, and FroYo, etc. As the last of five I can tell you I probably cost my parents the most, if for no other reason than needing braces and eye-wear (easy ladies, I don’t wear braces now; I only had them during one of the “totally not going to impact your self esteem” years of a mid to late teenager.)
And sure, do I have sleeping habits that are absolute drek, similar to parents? Absolutely. Whether not being able to shut down the ol’artistic brain parts that won’t let me sleep because there’s writing to be had; or eating too much granola and dark chocolate before I go to the gym at night which leaves me too hopped up to sleep afterwards… Trust me, I feel your pain, or potentially not; due to the fact that at least when I don’t sleep it’s not related to a crying baby or kid that had a nightmare. (Fun fact though; my active imagination as a kid and even now leaves me struggling to only remember the most vivid of dreams.)
And please, trust me, when my family stops over the nephews and nieces almost always leave my place in disarray… Then again I’m a natural organizer \ cleaner, and I can hardly flex that muscle if I’m not given the excuse to tidy up and what not. So okay fine, I’m an optimist by nature and look at the positive of things as opposed to the negative… Which is why I could only laugh when I was “othered” recently, due to never having sired offspring.
So my most patient and only sister invited myself and other brother with no kids to a winter concert late last month. (We also brought our almost 80 year old dad, who thought we were going to a replay of a Charlton Heston movie for some reason.) Her oldest of two buggy’s, Bug Sr., (yes, lots of nicknames in the family, most of them cute, not going to give mine) was playing the violin. My sister had her hair done up all technical like, where as my idea of lending her my one red Nike hat to match her red dress was met with rolled eyes. I said it was Dri-Fit but that didn’t help my case.
As we got to her new school , where I was only familiar with her last one due to having ‘Room Matt-ed’ one time, I quickly noticed who the parents were; the one’s making sure their kids outfits were just so, worrying about their hair, and or reminding what G flat chord sounded like as opposed to an A minor. (Yeah, I have no musical talent whatsoever, and singing in the car doesn’t count… Believe me I checked.)
However I could instantly tell who the non-parents were; guys talking about their fantasy teams, one of them my brother who thought my head nodding indicated I was listening… Other people thumbing through their phones, or just the general chatter related to having disposable income for the booze and FroYo. (Fine fine fine, that last part was me when I was telling my brother how awesome it is, he also nodding in similar fashion like myself to his ramblings about this ‘waiver wire’ thing.)
Now there wasn’t exactly assigned seating, or an area labeled ‘parents only,’ not dissimilar to back in the 50’s when for example you’d go to a park and there’d be signs that read… Wait good god, what comparison was I about to make?! Nope, definitely not that, so moving on and what not! Seriously though there weren’t labels, but it was clear my brother and I were about to experience what so many smokers have had to sustain in the past, by having society’s ‘normals’ corner us off in our own section.
Okay it wasn’t actually that bad. It’s not like the other child-less adults had blinking neon signs pointing down at them saying ‘life’s mistake is that I’ll die alone’ or ‘their “kids” are their dogs and cats.’ And as a dog \ miniature schnauzer guy, I resent the fact people don’t consider them children. I mean come on, dogs with beards, you can’t make that stuff up!
Annnnnyyyywho, just thought you people should see how the other side lives… So next time keep your friend or family member in mind, who may have never birthed or bred children, but still support your little bugs. (Or whatever nicknames you use, half the time I forget people in my family have real names!)