One of the foundational bricks upon which my music is built is that of unconventional womanhood. So, though I have been sitting on a lot of ideas for blog entries about the songs on my album-in-progress, tonight I am going to write about the documentary I’m currently watching: Maxine Trump’s To Kid or Not to Kid.
I don’t usually write about a thing in the middle of watching it. But in this case if I don’t ride the immediacy, I probably won’t get around to writing this.
My emotional investment in the documentary is only marginal, simply because it is not quite representative of my viewpoint. Not to detract at all from Maxine’s, but it makes me wonder: where are all the women who a have chosen not to have children AND are truly unburdened by this choice? Who didn’t grow up in religious families with the accompanying feelings of obligation and guilt, and whose lack of desire for children has nothing to do with concerns about career/time management/sacrificing dreams/spreading oneself too thin? Who, from childhood, simply never recognized the concept of “mother” as being any part of them? Who view their uterus as something akin to an appendix?
To be fair, women like these, like me, are touched on peripherally in the documentary, but they are not at the center of it.
The answer could be that those women are rarely, if ever, moved to make documentaries or write articles exploring their decision, because there is no stressful ambivalence, no driving anxiety. Granted, that’s just me surmising.
Anyway… it turns out that this documentary is maybe, more than anything, the story of a woman trying to reconcile with an old friend, and about women who make very different life choices learning not to judge each other. Which I certainly support.
At the end of the day… for anyone who may stumble on this who doesn’t know me, or know me well… the way it feels for me is that I never even made a decision not to be a mother. I simply was born NOT one. As I have gotten older, my sensitivity to tiny humans has increased; their warmth and vulnerability is almost painful when it is placed very close to my person (this after years of a certain feeling of numbness/impenetrability). But this evolving acuity never crosses the line into my wanting to bear and raise them, or even spend prolonged time with them, myself.
And this is one of the many things that informs my music, even when I’m not 100% aware of it.
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