When I was about 35 I had a voglia. That’s Italian for a deep yearning. At least that’s what it means from the part of Italy my mother’s family is from.
I could not shake this. It just ate and ate at me. I was a happily married teacher with 2 children and I desperately wanted to have another child. My mother chided me to be grateful for what I had.
And I was! But voglia defies reason. The kids were finally getting older-7 and 11. We were getting older. Everyone was healthy, happy. Everything was really just fine.
I decided what I needed to do was make a pro and con list.
The con list was very long:
possibility of health issues as an older expectant mom
starting all over again
another college to pay for-maybe in retirement years
how would it affect other kids
kids now self reliant
both in school, etc.
Very practical list! Very reasonable!
The pro list had one word on it:
And you know what? Sometimes the pro list wins. Sometimes you have a yearning so deep in your heart, you defy what everyone says, you drop out of a doctorate program as I did, and you follow your heart. You know what is right for you; you know what it is that gives your life meaning.
So when I was 38, at Thanksgiving, I gave birth to our youngest daughter. My husband was over the moon. My son, 12 at the time (now 19), is her godfather and a bigger spoiler you cannot find! Her sister was happy to have a friend. My mother told me to never listen to her again.
And you know what? I’m not as far along in my job as I could be. I never finished my doctorate. But I am content in the places in my heart where you can only be when you know you have made the right decision for yourself.
Each morning I drop my 7 year old off to school and she says, “Mom, we’ll hold hands in our minds all day, right?” and I say yes. I send her off with a kiss and watch her towhead pigtails skip across the grass and I smile to myself. My voglia.