I was going through my notes from years back and I found this personal essay which captured my strange reaction to a photo posted by a friend. I have no idea why I was referring to myself as a third person then…
He posted a photo of him.
There are tear stains in both of his eyes and he’s half naked, mostly because the other half couldn’t be seen. His mouth is open but he looks peaceful and silent. It’s his first post for his first born. The first of many.
I guess this has to be that one side of every 28-year-old unmarried woman living in the 21st century. Every month She’s flooded by baby photos, news of engagements, ultrasound images, relationship status and you know what I mean I don’t need to enumerate all of them. But before you start catching up some hints and start thinking you already have an idea where this talk is getting to, first let’s make it clear — She is not complaining.
She always finds it nice to see people she’d known for a long time, people She had met during grade school, people who have reached and got over puberty the same time as her; It’s nice to see them sharing the big steps in their lives to everyone, including her. She feels grateful to be able to see these people start taking responsibility for their lives, for the lives of those who are significant to them, for the lives they themselves created.
This 28-year-old unmarried woman living in the 21st century is a mere observant in this side of the world that is exposed to her.
Sometimes she expresses her joy, sometimes she sends her wishes for them through scattered molecules off the air, doubtful on whether they will ever reach them. But sometimes she stops being an observant and starts relating the unrelated milestone of someone else’s life to her own, and her mind starts wandering.
He posted a photo of him. A new being with a unique DNA combination of two people she knows.
Somehow, he looks so familiar. Not because he looks like anyone else other than some newborns she had seen before, after all she’s terrible recognizing similarities in facial features of her fellow specie even if some find them too obvious. Maybe he looks familiar because she knows his parents. But what strikes her while looking at his photo is that even if it has been a general knowledge that two heterosexual human beings with healthy sperm and egg cell can actually form another life, it seems that it’s just now that this fact has dawn into her. She has no idea why and how come this sort of enlightenment happened only now.
Maybe because now she already has a significant other, who still wasn’t sure if he wants to share his DNA to create another life with her. She knew about this and she respects and understands his choice no matter what it will be, even if it will turn out unfavorable to her. She already made up her mind that when the time she’s ready and he’s not, she will find a generous being who will be willing to share his DNA to her to form a new life. She thought it won’t be easy for her and her significant other, but she knows she has to do it because she doesn’t want to live in regret for not having a child just because he doesn’t want to.
But he posted a photo of him and now she’s troubled.
She imagined posting a photo of another him or her, a photo of someone with half of her DNA. She wonders how familiar would it be, if the other half of DNA would be from someone who is not familiar to her. The generous being who she never loved and will never love. It scares her, that one day she might need to take that milestone that will change her forever, and might take her apart from the significant other.
She doesn’t know how to end this thought. There is no conclusion. Apologies to the readers who read up to this line.