My niece, Lilah

For a long time, I never wanted children. I never wanted a marriage. I wanted love. I wanted to be with someone. But marriage and children were commitments that I was not confident I could fulfill and keep. They say you are the product of your parents. Therefore, would not a divorced family create more divorces? Would I want to be a divorcee straddled with children? It seemed ridiculous!

But as I passed 25, I started to think about children more. With no luck of marriage in sight, I formulated thoughts and ideas. Raising a child is hard, raising one alone is even harder. But I wanted one sometime in the near future. I didn’t want to wake up one day at 40 with a dead end job or a flourishing career and regret not having one of my own. By then, medically, I might not be able to have one or run the risk of having an ill child.

Maternal instinct comes natural to me having taken care of my baby sisters. My mother raised 4 children alone. She raised 4 great children. She taught me well and I wanted to pass that knowledge, our history, and our heritage to my own child.

People have all sorts of reason to have and not to have children. Some don’t even make reasons—they just happen. Some shouldn’t and some should. And you’ll never be ready to have a child, no matter what you think. What I’ve learnt from watching my sisters grow up is that you can never expect children to be the way you want them to be. But they bring so much joy because of its unconditional love.

I knew that if by 30, I didn’t find a mate, I would have a child alone. I saved well, I worked hard, I have a portfolio to take me to a better job, and I have a family who is willing to support me if I needed them.

But now, it’s even better that I did find someone. Best of all, it’s someone I feel strongly about who would make a great partner, a father, and a friend—someone I know our child will be proud of, look up to, and have fun with. And even without him, my child would have a system of aunts and uncle, cousins, and grandparents who he can look up to and be proud that he is part of this great family.