I love my life. I’m married to my very best friend, I have a business that feeds my soul, and I’m surrounded by smart, strong, capable women every day. I get to travel and go on grand adventures, and I get to experience things that some people only dream about. But, as happy and fulfilled as I am, there are still those few days each year when the feeling of loss weighs on me hard. The days when I feel that despite all my accomplishments, there’s still something big missing. Something I’ll never be able to experience for myself.
When Christmas morning arrives, and there’s no pitter-patter of little feet, I feel it. On Halloween, when I drop candy into pillow cases, I feel it. When I sit through the gift-opening portion of a baby shower, I feel it. When I have a great conversation with my mom and realize that I’ll never have that relationship with another person, I feel it. As much as I love the life I’ve created, I still have those moments when I feel like I’m missing out on one of life’s greatest joys.
I’ve come to a place in my life where I truly feel peace about being childless, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t hard moments. So, for all of you childless people out there shaking your heads in agreement, know that it’s okay. It’s okay to be sad, and it’s okay not to be sad. It’s okay to be both sad and not sad in the same day. It’s okay to have a good cry Christmas morning before spoiling you nieces and nephews all afternoon. Your feelings are valid, wherever you are on your journey.
I think that childless aunties and uncles are some of the most magnificent and influential people in a child’s life. We love your kids like they’re our own, and we love spoiling them even more! We’re happy to step in when mom and dad need a break. We’re able to be both friend and authority figure like nobody else can.
As I write this, there’s a pile of gifts under my Christmas tree waiting for all the special littles in my life. I feel so blessed and honored that my friends love me so much that they want me to be a major influence in the life of their children, and I take that responsibility to heart. I know so many others who feel this same way.
So, I implore you, dear internet friends, this holiday season and always, be kind to your childless friends. Invite them over to watch your kids open up gifts Christmas morning. Ask them if they want to partake in your family’s traditions too. Just check in on them, and remember that this joyous season brings up painful emotions for many of them, even if they never mention it.
Wishing all of you the happiest of holidays!