The other day I was reading an article on MSN raising a question, 'Why it is that people are continually investing in the heaviest unprofitable venture - children?" Over a period of 17 years each parent for each child spends thousands of dollars, depending upon their income. Sometimes, even to the tune of hundreds of thousand. Besides being expensive, the studies show that raising kids is one of the most stressful jobs. Right from the birth and small sickness to the teen years and not even until establishing their successful career. The worry does not end after their marriage ' it only changes its course. The causes of pain are different now. Why is it that we crave to have children?
Why do we do anything for that matter? Why an actor who has made big already struggles to stay on top or be famous? Why a philanthropist gives away his treasures? Why a father works harder and harder to provide for his children? Why a mother loves her child selflessly? Because we like it! Fortunately, even today, lots of things we do and enjoy are not about money. This is the need of the soul. Thank God for these emotions, that we are still going strong. We are humans and not machines. Other wise the world has become so much business like.
It's true that raising children is very stressful. But the day my daughter left home, I surprised my family by breaking the norm of not putting any picture on the walls. Her photo went on the strategic wall where I could see her almost doing anything. Even the thought of her brings a fresh breeze of joy on my face. The studies show that people who do not have children are happy. I can't imagine how any one can possibly miss something that he hasn't experienced. People who do not have children don't know the endless joy children bring ' way too much to surpass the stress they bring with them. It doesn't end there! I hear from everyone, wait until you become a grand parent! Everyday, I see my colleagues who are already grandparents, go around showing off pictures of their grand children. It is an immense bliss.
And besides, how can we be so selfish and think of only our future, comfort and material happiness ' what about our obligation towards nature. A seed fallen into earth sprouts and gives birth to a sapling which in turn becomes a tree and dedicates it's life towards the benefit of humans. The Hindu's believe a man and a woman together repay this earth by becoming parents. Becoming parent is a very holy experience; it's not like giving birth as an outcome of sexual pleasure that ends your responsibility. It's an experience which ends with one's life itself. It's a total dedication not just towards your child but also towards this society. It's your contribution in making good citizens and in your effort to make this world a better place.
Once a couple sets mind to start a family they wait anxiously to get a confirmation. One can imagine the amount of incomparable joy it gives. Just the fact, 'We are pregnant!' I remember, when I got married, till I became pregnant, the only predictable question from the family was ' When? Nothing much has changed, ever since my daughter-in-law has got the confirmation from her doctor, I see glow and immense happiness on her face all the time - priceless. In fact, I some times envy and wish I could enjoy the anticipation of motherhood as much as she does. I was asked to accompany them to the sonogram. Boy! Was it amazing!
One cannot answer this question of why one wants children unless he or she has experienced the ecstasy. It's a different kind of joy that can't be explained. It's a kind of sharing with your child that is out of this world. A mother can even communicate with her children miles away merely through her thoughts. It's a bond that one feels so grateful for towards God for giving it to us. It's a pain that a parent feels for his child's suffering (God forbid) that is beyond imagination. It's a love that's superior to any kind of love between people.