It’s happened to me a few times over the years. The first time an ex resurfaced was pre-Facebook through a site called Friends Reunited. He was my first true love and it was fun to see his face and remember the good times we had when we were way too young (and thankfully smart enough) to do anything more than fantasize about getting married and having kids together. When he told me about his wife and two little girls, I felt a little melancholy for the life I could have had, but knew I made the right choice when we broke up and I pursued a different life.
The next run-in was in-person with the ex-fiancé who had never wanted kids. I ran into him with his new wife and daughter when I was right in the thick of my infertility madness. That time I was livid, furious, jealous, feeling that the world had done me wrong, thinking how he’d wasted five years of my life and frittered away my chance to have children of my own. Fortunately my husband was with me at the time and I was instantly reminded that my ex’s lack of desire for children wasn’t the only reason we were no longer together.
This week another ex resurfaced on the dreaded Facebook. He was a high school boyfriend and we “went out” for a few months, as I recall. Nice guy, but I think I was probably about 15 at the time. He friended me on FB and I accepted, and of course went straight to his photos to look for evidence of his current life. There were photos of two little blonde girls and him playing board games with them, and I felt…nothing. No envy, no sadness, not even relief.
We all choose our paths in life. Sometimes the path choses us, but even then we still have choices to make about how we walk that path. I didn’t plan to have a life without children, but I always planned to have a good life, and I do. When I look at the lives I might have had with the men I might have had them with, I realize that they weren’t the life I wanted. I like my life, it’s a good life, and even if it’s a life without children, it’s still the life I want.