father with daughter

I remember when I was younger, my cousin and I would go to a NYC project to visit an older cousin who had the latest video game system. We would always play a basketball game, of course. Being much younger it was always cool to be accepted as one of the guys, especially when we were at least ten years their senior. It meant a lot for me, because these were the only male figures who took the time to chill with us. We respected them and they respected us.

I happened to run into one of my older cousin’s good friends that watched us grow up. Now that I’m approaching thirty it seems as if people are always asking when I am going to start to have kids. I was only asked, if I had any at all, because for some it just happens. I do not have any kids, but it is by choice. His response was, “You are smart.” It was this response that inspired my post today, and I thank him for sparking the conversation within me. It is a fact that kids are not born by mere happenstance. There are a series of decisions made, which bring about a baby being born. The first decision made is to have sex. The second decision is to not use a condom, or for a woman not to be on birth control (Please note, that even if a woman is on birth control you should still use condoms). The third and final decision is to have the baby after discovering that the woman is pregnant. Some women may decide to have an abortion, which again is a choice.

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There are a series of decisions being made that we should all take some thought. I just wish more people would have more conversations about having children, especially if your relationship with your partner isn’t that great. I have noticed some family patterns that I want to come to an end, but they first have to end with me, so I won’t inadvertently continue the cycle with my own future children. On top of that you need to make sure your partner recognizes their own family patterns, so you are aware, and vice versa. This creates an environment that is a clean canvas, for a child to really have infinite possibilities, as opposed to be limited to continue what the family cycle. Not all family patterns are negative, but just be aware.

With the plethora of young men out here without fathers present in their household, more men need to step up as mentors. That’s another discussion for another time, though. I look forward to the day that I do decide to have children. I will be everything that my child or children need me to be. I am not by any means disrespecting parents, who ushered children into this world with no discussion, conversation or thought. Life happens, but what I do know is that being a parent is by far the toughest calling of any human being. My decision to wait is how serious I take that calling. If you are called earlier than the average person, it is up to you and your partner to see that your child is taken care of, nurtured, and loved.

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I look forward to your thoughts. Did you wait to have children? Are you waiting now? Are you having the discussions with someone you are serious with?

*Don’t forget to remember Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on this day through community service, fellowship, or however you see fit*

– Alacrity Amir