“Love you first, you just might realize that you’re enough!”

Lesley, 49, USA

Hello, I am a 49 year old married woman, from Phoenix, AZ.

As a young girl, I always knew I was a nurturer. I began babysitting at the ripe age of 11. During the summers, I had clients, and took my job very seriously. Later, my single mother would remarry my stepfather and make me a big sister of three toddlers. While I transitioned from babysitting to “real” work, I still played a huge role in helping out with my siblings.

By the time I graduated high school, the farthest thing on my mind was having children. I had already cooked for, cleaned up and driven my younger siblings to daycare all throughout high school. I learned early on that having babies was a lot of work. I didn’t think about becoming a mom or getting married like a lot of girls I knew.

I was focused on doing me and gaining my independence. Because I instinctively have an affinity towards children, I went to school for elementary education, after a lot of soul searching…. yeah, that’s what I’ll call it! I’ve been in education for 20 years now and love making a difference in the students I serve. Being a teacher, a big sister and having more nieces, nephews, and cousins than most, along with my godson, I have never felt the need to become a mother.

After getting married, there was definitely pressure but I’ve been able to have a fulfilled, blessed life that I appreciate more and more each day. My husband and I are quite content being the best aunt and uncle we can be.

Being childfree is something that should be talked about and considered when our youth are learning about life and what it means to adult responsibly. I also wrote my first memoir (Child-Free, A Journey With Me) about the option to live childfree AND live your best life!

My hope is that young ladies will take time to learn who they are before making such a critical, life-altering decision. Love you first, you just might realize that you’re enough!