For a Woman Who Didn’t Want Kids, I’ve Never Been So Excited About a Baby

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When I was younger, all I wanted was to be a mother. In high school, my dream for the future was to find the right guy, get married and have kids. Surely that would be the quickest road to my ultimate highway to happiness.

Days before I turned 25, my dad died of a drug overdose. Apparently, upon hearing the news, the first thing I howled before falling to the floor was, “He’ll never see my children!”

Neither would I.

My dad had many addictions, and my heart continued to break long after he left. Afterwards, my link to what love meant changed forever. I lost all sense of trust and wasn’t going to risk my heart on another relationship, man or child.

For the first time, the idea of having babies was scary rather than romantic. If love brought this much pain, I wanted out of the game.

It took me years to change my mind about getting married. But eventually I met Chris, and felt safe enough to roll the dice with my heart. Best bet I ever made.

Still, the idea of being committed to someone for the rest of my life was enough for me to process. In went the IUD. One relationship at a time.

Chris and I talked about kids occasionally, but whenever I have brought up the subject, his response echoed my own, “I’m not ruling it out, but not now.”

If he had ever once looked in my eyes and said, “Baby, I want your baby!” I might be knocked up with triplets by now. But our shared ambivalence has never motivated me to take on toddlers.

Much of our mutual reluctance comes from years of caretaking troubled grownups. We’ve seen a lot of suffering, and more often we’ve wished for a break, rather than to take on more responsibility.

There’s a form of ‘parenting’ when dealing with a depressed dad on drugs and alcohol. Or with Chris’ mentally ill sister, now in her 50s, requiring the same care as a child. We get to deal with diapers, tantrums, and a whole lot of crying – just not the cute kind.

Soon after we were married, I had my own meltdown. I knew I’d have a few issues to work through, yet I wasn’t expecting to find myself in the fetal position over something that didn’t deserve such a reaction…or throwing arugula across the room for no reason.

When my dad was depressed, I tried to convince him that life was beautiful and worth having a strong will to LIVE. Suddenly, I couldn’t convince myself of the same.

Nurturing others has always been easy for me. Having patience and compassion for my own pain was another story. I didn’t feel ready for or even worthy of a child. Maybe I finally felt secure enough to be one. I’m not much of a crier, but as my soul unloaded deeply held sadness…I was surprised at how good it felt to feel.

Photo: Anthony Goble for Violet Grey

I always got the sense from my mom that I was the best and worst thing that ever happened to her. I used to believe I ruined her life. She was 18 with dreams of becoming the next Sarah Bernhardt…but one fateful night in the back of a Pontiac LeMans, as In A Gadda Da Vida rocked on, the course of her Catholic life would change forever.

Even though she was offered an abortion, then called a ‘puttana’ by her future father-in-law (that’d be WHORE in Italian), she went along with the unplanned pregnancy and was promptly married…

…then divorced.

Living through the aftermath of my single-mother’s messy life while her ex-husband moved on to her sister…also left me feeling less than inspired about raising children.

There are many contributing factors that led Chris and I to choose not to have children. But let me be clear, I LOVE kids. I cry when I hold them. I cry when I’m at a recital and the kids dancing aren’t my own. (Oddly, I was the only teary adult at this recital).

Sentimental stuff aside, the devil has been known to wear Huggies. And with our genes and according to the stars, I’d probably give birth to a “demon” child.

Anthony Goble for Violet Grey

For now, our fur babies are our family. We love them like they were our own – even though Joey’s peed on the bed and still eats clothes.

Babies can be many things. To me, the creative force comes through limitless manifestations. At the moment, I’m birthing a business – which is why you haven’t heard from me for a while. (If you’re interested in launch updates, click here and enter your email address).

In other VERY EXCITING news, my brother and sister in law are about to give birth to a baby girl and I am SO excited to be an Auntie!!!

As miracles would have it, two of our best friends (the beautiful couple we married in Tahiti last year) are also expecting their baby any day!!

I can’t wait to love these little ones. Children illuminate this crazy world and remind us of what’s most important – Love and connection.

The soon-to-be dad on the left

When I was little, I brought a lot of light to my dad whenever he was in the darkness. Sometimes he’d throw it back in a magic ball as bright as the sun. And sometimes, like a big black hole, he’d suck up all the life-force in the universe – at least that’s how it felt as a child. As I’ve gotten older, my perspective has sobered a bit. In many ways, my dad was like a child who never grew up. Which, once in a while, made him reeeally fun.

I still miss him and wish he were here to play with his new grand baby girl. I’m sure she’d love him as much Deli did.

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22 Responses to "For a Woman Who Didn’t Want Kids, I’ve Never Been So Excited About a Baby"
  1. Maite says:

    Beautiful little Sis… i have tears in the eyes. I had some flashbacks of when you wanted me to marry your Dad and to become your “personal stylist/ Stepmom…and our crazy night with Jeanette and THE CAT … Love you and miss you

    • Jeanette says:

      Adele and Maite — love all of our special times together sharing the happy, the sad, the hilarious and the serious. Love your parents, Adele — I am blessed by that time.

      • adele says:

        We ALL love you back Jeanette! Yes, special memories, and I’m glad I got to live through the end of that era…and know/love the special people of that time in history.

    • adele says:

      Haha YES! Great memories. Thank god you weren’t attracted to bald men 😉 I miss and love you too x

  2. Gail Di Santis Dillon says:

    Oh Adele – I love who you are, your own birthing and blossoming and now a baby girl! I am sending you a big hug filled with so much love!

  3. Florentina says:

    Ahhh I just love, love, love this! The courage it takes to open up your heart and post something like this for the world to read, because on some level we can all relate. Xo’s

    • adele says:

      Thank you Florentina! Sometimes I feel alone as if I’m the only one experiencing certain feelings…and it’s a great reminder that we can all relate on the deeper levels x

  4. Lynn says:

    I love love love this! Beautiful Adele:) so glad you wrote it! It could help a lot of others…

  5. Jennifer says:

    This is beautiful Adele and I connect to this on so many levels as I am sure so many will. So special to see your courage and for you to share your vulnerability. Sending you lots of love ❤️-Jennifer

  6. Stephanie says:

    Deli I’m so glad I read this! Your writing is candid and vulnerable. What a talent you are. I love you miss you! So excited that Frankie’s foto be a daddy! Big hugs my friend.

    • adele says:

      Thank you sweet Stephanie! I love you too. So special to hear from dear old friends. Your beautiful children make me melt xx

  7. Hannah says:

    Adele, thank you for having the courage to share words that speak for so many of us. Please keep sharing. I love it and I love you.

    • adele says:

      Thank you so much Hannah. Hearing this makes me motivated when I occasionally wonder what the f*ck I’m doing 😉 I love you too! x

  8. Sarah Taylor says:

    Wise and open hearted words from a wise and open hearted being. This is so beautifully written. One of my favorite of yours. xo

  9. Trace says:

    Beautiful Adele ?

  10. Angela Zeyn says:

    Deareast Adelle,
    That brought warmth to my heart, a smile to my face and tears in my eyes. Bravo! Love you!

    • adele says:

      Oh boy, I love to hear when tears flow 🙂 I wish I could cry more often since I usually feel so much better after a good release from the heart. Thank you and love you too x

  11. Your writing always moves me. Thanks for your wonderful blog.

  12. Nate says:

    Beautiful! What a wonderful read, Deli. Thank you for bravely opening up and sharing this with everyone. I actually could’ve read several more paragraphs from you on this topic. I don’t think those who choose to follow their heart and NOT have children get enough love & credit for making that decision. So…”love & credit” to both you and Chris! Kiss yourselves! <3

  13. Jema says:

    As always Deli you never cease to amaze me. I love your candid courageous style. SO talented

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