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Don’t Have Kids

Don’t have kids if you’re not ready to not be ready
or if you want to be in control or
if you don’t want to be completely swept off your feet.

Don’t have kids if you’re not ready to let go of your life
and create a new one, and
if you’re not ready to say I’ve been tired for 7 years
but I’m good.

Don’t have kids if you don’t think you can hold another person as long as it takes
period.
And don’t have kids if you’re not ready to clean vomit off a cat or
sleep on the floor or wonder when it is, exactly, that people learn to blow their own nose.

Don’t have kids if you’re not ready for more screaming and crying
than you’ve heard in your entire life, and
don’t have kids if you’re not ready for squeals of delight
when you walk through the door.

Don’t have kids if you’re not ready to do everything you know how
and still not have it be enough, but also, please,
don’t have kids if you’re not ready for a tiny face to be entranced
by everything you take for granted.

Don’t have kids if you’re not ready to carry someone until it hurts
or feel like the world’s strongest person for doing so.
And don’t have kids if you’re not ready to nurture the most fragile
and resilient thing you’ve ever known.

Don’t have kids if you think eating is easy, or
if you’re not ready to give up your cinnamon roll
because you can’t say no.

Don’t have kids if you like quiet car rides
or quick trips to anywhere.
And don’t have kids if you’re not ready
to lose track of time.

Don’t have kids if you don’t have room,
they don’t deserve that.
And don’t have kids if you don’t want another shadow
(or 40,000 pictures of that shadow)

And don’t have kids if you’re not ready to give
everything you’ve got, every single day, or
if you’re not ready to be annoyed at people saying
“it’s the toughest job you’ll ever love”
(because they’ll be right)

Don’t have kids if you think you’re ready for all this;
I can tell you, you aren’t.
And don’t have kids if you don’t want to end up writing something like this,
or sit here smiling, laughing, and crying at the end.

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