Unlike Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton, I had no qualms about turning 30. I embraced it, I didn't feel the least bit old, nor did I feel like I should have had children already. No regrets, just an exciting life ahead of me utilizing the many lessons I had learned from falling on my face over and over in my 20s -- in truth -- I was actually looking forward to 30. Then, a few months before the big day, my in-laws came to visit.
"We recorded a show for you while you were at work" oh really, what show might that be? "It's The View. They talked about how 90% of your eggs die when you turn 30. You should watch it honey, it's good information." In other words, happy f'ing birthday, your body is falling apart and Barbara Walters and friends think 90% of your eggs are hard boiled. Hurry the hell up and give us a grandchild already. Awesome.
Though not without their own personal flavor of crazy, my in-laws are, in fact, fantastic. They're supportive and loving people with good intentions and huge hearts. I love them dearly but sometimes, like everyone, they mess up. This was one of those times.
I've since recovered from the pre-30th birthday "egg situation" party foul and though I remain acutely aware that biology exists, continuing to emotionally manage the pressure from family and friends to jump on the baby train often feels unfair. I want to be able to enjoy my life, my husband, give birth to my career, and have a baby when I'm good and not-at-all-ready. In other words...in my own time.
The only thing worse than people wanting me to get pregnant so badly that they're willing to figure out how to use my DVR to passive-aggressively let me know that I should act fast, would be to have a TLC special all about how producing a child is my duty. Or, having an entire country and monarchy counting on the fact that my body is able to produce "an heir and a spare" while I simultaneously look and behave perfectly at every moment, risking media frenzy if I ever walk out of the house on a slightly bloated day. If I were Catherine Middleton, I would have a panic attack for sure.
Last night while I watched TLC's special, William and Kate: Royal Baby Watch, I felt my body tense up and heard my uterus scream out in empathy. Young couples, royal or not, are under different pressures than ever before. The divorce rate is through the roof, along with infertility and difficulty conceiving, and as modern couples, we're a little busy trying to fix the mess of a world the baby boomers have left us with.
If the success of Will and Kate's marriage is so profoundly important to the monarchy and to the world, why not let them get good at being married, then get good at becoming parents. Why put this kind of pressure on them already? Isn't an heir worth the wait?
I said it once, to my in-laws on that fateful day when The View picked the wrong effing topic, and I'll say it again: "The plan is for this marriage to last forever and the plan is for there to be children. That information is enough. Until the next chapter arrives, please just watch Regis and Kelly. Thanks."