I’ve talked about choosing to be happily childfree on here a few times (that’s still true – #sorrynotsorry). I think people want kids purely for narcissistic reasons (I can raise a great child!They’ll so pretty like me! Or my husband! They’ll have great values that I will instill in them! etc.), which is fine because we’re all biologically programmed to want kids to some extent, although some people are probably just pressured into it, too. I think babies can be really cute sometimes, for sure. They’re cute if they’re not ugly (yes, they exist), or happen not to be vomiting or crying, or spitting up, or pooping. Basically when they’re just little giggly blobs is when they’re the best. (And I use the word “best” lightly.)
But here’s the thing: since this is something that a majority of people are going to decide they want, I do believe that we should make it easy to have them and also continue to be a working human being. One of my oldest friends, who is more like an older sister, really, is a stay-at-home mom of three and I have no idea how she doesn’t come close to blowing her brains out on a daily basis. (Her choice, and I hope she’s happy, but OMGKILLMENOW.)
My managing director just had a baby four weeks ago. She is adorable and has a great name. Instead of sitting home, doing nothing, or sitting home and trying to work from home (while possible, it’s still probably annoying), she’s in the office one or two days (usually half-days) a week with her baby. The first time I heard her cry, I was like, “OMG MAKE IT STOP.” But that’s only happened once and then I chilled out.
The baby likes to be held a lot, so while my managing director is sending emails or whatnot, she’s holding the baby or someone else in the office is holding her (quite happily, I might add, because like I said, most people want kids). I’m pretty sure this is the modern-day equivalent of your fellow tribe numbers helping to take care of your babies.
Something that’s really weird about being 22 and finished with university is that you have to have conversations with your older relatives about what you’re going to ~do with your life~ as if the current life you live is not, you know, your life?
I studied Journalism at uni and throughout my entire time studying I worked as a journalist in various facets of the industry. I decided I don’t fucking like it and I don’t want to do it as my ~career~ a long time ago and I’m intelligent enough not to do anything that makes me miserable, even if it is the conventional or sensible route. Could I go and get a job as a journalist doing practically anything in the industry, tomorrow? Yes I literally could. I’ve travelled for international media projects. I interned for Chuck Palahniuk’s web editor. I have a professional portfolio longer than I am tall and I did exceptionally well at a very prestigious university.
But I don’t want to. I don’t like the industry or the work. That’s not to say something won’t come along that makes my heart beat faster, but it hasn’t come along yet and I’m too damn young, too damn smart and too damn interesting to settle for less than what I deserve. (I’m not saying I’m special here - I hope for a world in which EVERYONE gets to do whatever they damn well want rather than going into shitty ‘careers’ to please those around them.)
So yeah, I talked to my mum’s dad the other day and he wouldn’t ease up about what I was going to do with myself now. No congratulations by the way, haha - those around you who criticise without recognising your achievements typically aren’t those you want to impress, keep that in mind. Apparently selling out of three separate self-published poetry collections this year isn’t that impressive because my desk is in my house, not an office building, and I package up my zines myself and send them into the world with love, rather than delegating someone else to do it. The fact that I also work in a bar, that my partner and I are living the dual-income-no-kids dream lifestyle with an overseas trip every year at no strain on our budget is incidental, because I don’t wear a fucking white collared shirt and drag myself out of bed at 7am five days a week to be my definition of miserable.
Where am I going with this rant? I don’t fucking know haha.
All I know is, EVERYONE should live their lives according to their own standards and be happy, or at least surviving on their own terms. Fuck anyone who disagrees tbh - it’s 2015, office jobs aren’t all that’s available to us now and more importantly, fuck the notion of work being the most important thing in life. Find what you love and try to get paid for it. If you can’t get paid enough to support your lifestyle, find work that can and do what you love in your free time.
I work two nights a week, sell my poetry to people all over the world, and spend the rest of the time exploring, writing, travelling and loving. If that’s not success I don’t know what the fuck is.
With that idea and $15,000 in capital, Hilger and his tiny company, then called JBJ Industries, changed […] American shopping and dining habits. No longer did parents have to beg off an evening out because of the effective impossibility of toting their babies along. The diaper-changing station was a response to the increasing number of dual-income households, and working parents’ increasing desire to be with their kids as much as possible. Now 68 and something of a racehorse mogul in Minnesota, Hilger hesitates before finally allowing: “Well, yes. We changed the public restroom. We got the babies off the floor.”
Jeff Hilger, on revolutionizing American parenting with one simple object: the public restroom changing station. Fortune has a great article on the history of the changing station, riffing on a joke published in the Onion. (x)