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I watch people with their children. I see how parents see their children as both a blessing, and an extension of themselves. I makes me wonder whether I’ll be equipped to be a mother?

My stance on children was very clear when I was young. I didn’t want to have one. I couldn’t understand why people would subject their children to this world. I saw a world where only those with gorgeous faces or splendid humour would stand a chance of surviving. I saw a world where children were bullied for being different, for having less and for being themselves. People didn’t take the time to listen to the problems children went threw. Teens were labeled as rebels by adults, not knowing that certain life situations had resulted in that teen acting out in an attempt to receive help and love. I saw a world that wasn’t equipped for handling children, so I couldn’t understand why people continued to have them.

As I grew older, I realised that people have children not to grow the population (as naive as that may sound), but to fill a void in themselves. Adults to have it all together as we are often forced to believe. Adults are the most broken examples of humanity. They have to live with broken dreams, regret and jobs that do nothing for their self esteem. They see things as black and white, as life has drained them of any form of imagination. Children on the other had are full of life. They are optimists that have endless imagination and ambition. They tell stories of being doctors and firefighters,  while being superheroes in their free time. They are everything parents want to be, but don’t know how to achieve.

I turned 24 and immediately noticed the void. It was an emptiness that the anti depressants could not fill. It was as though I was dead inside, and waking up seemed almost impossible. It was then I realised that children do just that. They awaken the soul in ways that can only be described as “divine intervention”. They offer hope when everything seems bleek. I finally understood the allure of having a baby. Of having someone that is yours and no one else’s. Of being loved, not because of any material possession you have given them, but by simply being their parent. However with this realisation, came another. How would my depression be affected by having a child? Would my child also be depressed? Would it be safe for me to be on medication while being pregnant? Suddenly the choice that seemed so easy became challenging and brought with it panic and anxiety.

It is as though my depression has taken one more thing away from me. Again it has left me in a position where it’s my only companion.

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Ros Limbo
mulemwa.limbo@gmail.com

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