"My couch smells like shit," my best friend said to me today. "The kids probably spilled milk on it and didn't tell me."
Of course there’s an element of selfishness to my lack of desire for kids. I think everyone should look at the decision to procreate from a selfish level to help understand the reality of what aspects of their life they will be losing if they add a kid to their life. One of my big hang-ups is that I really like my stuff. I love being surrounded by beautiful things. My art glass collection brings me joy. I enjoy lighting candles throughout the house, setting a pretty table. I am proud of my meticulously alphabetized media collection, my beautiful chess set, our office full of blinking lights and expensive technology… all sorts of non-kid-friendly things.
When people with kids come to my house they love to tell me what nice things I have, and a resounding theme is “I wish I could have nice things”, or “it’s so much easier to decorate when you don’t have child safety to think about”. A living room free from bright plastic toys and random kid crap strewn about makes me really happy.
The loss of my pretties would be damaging to me, as would the need to more seriously consider purchases. I don’t want to go into huge debt to be able to have nice things. My husband and I are materialistic, but not to a fault in that we have no credit card debt and continue to have savings as a major part of our budget.
But the thought of my sofa smelling like shit (and my best friend has BEAUTIFUL furniture) makes me really sad. Her beautiful Victorian home is still gorgeous (I’m constantly envious) and she does have beautiful things, but the corner protectors on the coffee table, the scratched up hardwood floors and random cars and toys strewn about the house kind of screamed “mom’s house”.
Of course it’s not all about the stuff and all about the money. This was just on my mind after my conversation with her this morning.