Specifically, having my own.
There have been reminders like the expected daily posts and snaps from my friends with kids. More obscurely, Beatles references – or John Lennon, at any rate – to the…oneness one feels with one’s offspring. I wish I could remember where I came across that particular reference. I’d specifically like to avoid confronting that again.
But even in relatively expected safe havens, like TV, I find my reproductive shortcomings taunting me. When Madam Secretary plot lines are calling out your life or lifestyle choices, you probably need to take a step back and give yourself a good once over.
Seriously, isn’t TV supposed to provide an escape?
Maybe it’s the new year…but, c’mon! I’ve always been the guy who refers to children as an STD.
Perhaps the choices I’m meant to examine are more along the lines of whether I should not binge-watch Madam Secretary. Sticking to the relatively safe havens of Doctor Who and strong male leads like Jean Luc Picard.
Sure. Great. Now I just look like a sexist jerk for blaming my introspective nature and nueroses on Tea Leoni.
But that Madam Secretary season finale last season. <sigh>
All she wanted was to revisit a vacation destination – a cabin in the woods – with her husband and kids. An escape for her to a less complicated time. Naturally, her teenagers and adult children don’t want to go, which disappoints her. Her husband -played by Tim Daly, and probably really more along the lines of what my life is actually missing – takes her to the cabin anyway, just the two of them.
Of course, good old Tim – and formulaic happy ending TV writing – has rallied the kids to the cabin early to surprise mom when they walk into the same exact cabin from all those years ago.
Can you hear my heartstrings?
So, in my ruminating, I’m back to the big life questions…what’s missing from my reality, the potential family cabin scenario or the romance of simply having someone in my life who cares enough for my emotional needs to get me the equivalent of Tea’s family getaway?
That’s a tough one.
But then it isn’t.
I’ve never wanted kids. I’m probably too selfish to make the life changing sacrifices good parents make. I think I could instill great values in a young ‘un, though, don’t get me wrong.
So, I guess as I tap my way through this thought exercise of an essay, it’s not children that my psyche is telling me I’m missing out on. It’s screaming out a warning to not abandon my expectations for a long term relationship in my life. It’s that level of intimacy and nurturing that parenting and raising children represents that I think is what drives my desire for a relationship.
Not built in dates on national holidays.
Or an end to the sad looks single people get from couples.
Ok, maybe a little bit that last one.
You’d think that realization or the recognition of the meaning behind the propaganda my subconscious has been hurling at me would simplify things.
But at least it provides some clarity before I went all Mia Farrow or Angelina Jolie on my life.
Which returns me to the future reality of growing old without built in caretakers.
Oddly, that I can imagine without freaking out. Unlike, it would appear, imagining the potential of growing old without an intimate partner in my life to accompany me on that (mis)adventure.