We're not handed situations based on our established likes and dislikes; we get what's available.
In about an 18-month period, my mother got sick and died, and then I had a freak illness less than a year later and almost died myself. And I found in both of those situations that there was this expectation to have a kind of transformative experience.
It's great that Time is moving in the direction of validating those who, by choice or circumstance, will never be parents. But the point is not simply that society should stop judging those of us who don't have children. It's that society actually needs us. Children need us.
When I talk to students or young writers about the importance of being unafraid to take controversial positions, I'm struck by the degree to which they can't entertain a thought, much less commit one to paper, without imagining the cacophony of snark they'll get in response.
Mother's Day, like motherhood itself, is fraught with peril. There are so many ways to get it wrong, so many opportunities to disappoint and be disappointed.
When I made my final reckoning with the decision not to have kids, I also decided that I would use at least some of my extra time to better the lives of kids who are already here.