"Well, I'm not sure if I can even have kids at this point, since I'm in my forties," I said.
The thought bubble over my head was saying, "Why on earth are you telling this man these things on your first date?! Not exactly fun and flirty dinner conversation!"
Another part of my brain was saying, "Oh well, if you're gonna scare him away, make it sooner rather than later, for everyone's sake."
My future husband replied, "I want children, but I'd rather end up with the right woman than worry about what our life should look like. I'd be happy adopting."
I tried to do my best first-date-nonchalant-nod, while inside my heart did a flip of wonder at the man sitting across from me. I don't know how we brought the conversation around to more pedestrian things after talking children and finding 'the one' in the first twenty minutes of our first date, but we did. We also ended up drinking too much wine and lingering at our dinner table longer than the waiter probably preferred.
Claire was born two and a half years later.
I could take this post in a few directions. I could talk about the struggle to date in your 40's, when a large chunk of the male population has written you off as ready for pasture. I could share the story of how hard and easy it was for us to have Claire. I could detail the advantages and disadvantages of being older parents.
But it's the fourth anniversary of that first date, so I want to tell my husband a few things.
George, my first impression of you was that you put relationships above goals. Knowing you as I do now, I've learned that there is no other way for you to be. You have shown me how easy it is to embrace the unknown, when you are loved. You have taught me that hope isn't getting what you think you want, but being open to what you receive.
I may have carried Claire for nine months. But she was born out of this beautiful spirit, which came solely from you.