I Have Bigger Plans

There are four generations and sixteen families sprawled on the green lawns. Picnic tables are covered with rag-tag cloths of every imaginable color, and rapid conversation fills the air. Lanterns in glass flicker excitedly, competing with the few remaining sunbeams. Walking among the masses, every once in a while a trill of laughter or friendly taunt can be heard coming from this way and that. I spy my aunt running toward me. Eagerly, I meet her, and we embrace. She holds me back to admire my hair, my bracelets, perhaps a few lines of age on my face. Suddenly, the cheery conversation skids to a stop as she demands, "Why aren't you married? Why don't you have any kids?"
Ouch. Commenting on my crow's feet was less offensive. This thing happens every few years, at every family reunion. Ever since I can remember, at every opportunity in a vain attempt to repeat myself, I have told everyone who will listen:
"I'm going to travel the world and write books".
I have said this for years, even at the tender age of 11. This is my true calling, and now at an age between 18-21 (have to stay safe online) I have made serious headway in making this kind of life happen for me, even already done some traveling outside the country.
Still somehow, the obvious questions manage to slip their minds. Not once has anyone asked me, "Are you afraid to travel alone?" "What will you write about?" "Where will you go?" And not once has anyone offered their support in the matter. It would be music to my ears to hear, "I have some airline points, niece, for you to use in emergency." "Have you heard of such-and-such? They have a house in Italy and would be delighted for you to visit." Or maybe, "That's wonderful, honey. Good job!"
Even though I have asserted myself at every opportunity, all anyone ever asks me is about why I'm not married and about the reproduction thing. Instead, the questions I always get, accompanied by looks of shock, sound like this:
"But what about the babies?" (Which don't exist.)
"But what about your husband?" (Whom I don't have.)
"But what if you change your mind?" (I haven't since 11.)
Remember, dear readers, I am in the 18-21 age group. I sympathize and applaud women older than me who are in the same boat, and probably endure much more pressure than I.
I'm tired of this. I am never getting married or having kids. Its absolutely exhausting to hear people tell me I will change my mind. I'm living the life of my dreams at a very young age, and they can't stand it. In the future, I won't have time to change my mind. I will be very, very busy. And I'll be happy about it, because I have bigger plans.

ParadisePoet ParadisePoet
2 Responses Sep 22, 2012

Love this post, I may even rate it up. I am spouseless and childless...and I love my ability to freely move about whenever and wherever I wish. If, I wanted a weekend getaway half way across the country...on a last minute notice...I can, with little to no hassles. Why? No wife, no kids. My Ex-girlfriend was also spouseless and childless (she is not desiring marriage, but she is pining for a child).
I get plenty of family members bugging me about my "status". People have never bullied or manipulated me in any way. Ever.
Good for you, for keeping close to your principles.
Keep up your writing, it's very nice.

You express yourself very well in writing, so I hope someday I can read one of your books. If you travel a lot, then you will have a lot of interesting, exciting tales to tell. I think you're doing the right thing; the life of a "globe-trotter" is not exactly family friendly. I'm glad you're assertive enough to do what is best for you instead of being bullied/manipulated by all the busybodies and know-it-alls of the world. Best wishes, wherever you decide to go!