Out of the Mouths of Babes

Joanne Tombrakos

A Different Kind of Giving Birth

I’ve never been a mother. I’m not really sure how that happened but it did. I always thought I would have children. A boy and a girl. I remember having this discussion as a senior in high school with my BFFs. I would graduate college, work for a bit, get married around 25 and then have kids before 30.

But I didn’t.

My philosophical bent tells me that I never really wanted it that much. If I had felt that pull, that maternal instinct that I hear other women tell me they had, I am sure I would have made it happen. I’m like that. What I really want in life tends to show up. Not necessarily in the visual picture I might have started out imagining, but there nonetheless.

But it didn’t.

It has little to do with my own mother whom I have more than once apologized to for not giving her grandchildren. She was the kind of mother everyone should have. The kind that tells me never to worry about the absence of grandchildren. The kind that assures me that by being me I’ve given her a wonderful daughter and that is enough. Although a little over protective at times, she created a warm, loving home filled with the aroma of baking cookies and lots of hugs. One that felt safe. The kind that most young girls would be all too anxious to replicate.

But I didn’t.

While at first glance one might not have thought it, I have always been a bit of a non-traditionalist carving my own path, one that meandered through two careers, one as a public school teacher, one as a corporate sales executive before finding this one. Ironically, now in that part of my life when the child-bearing years are behind me, I feel as though I have given birth. The first offspring arriving this past September in the form of The Secrets They Kept.

So I guess I did. Give birth. To books.

I suppose I am a mother, with a second child, The Seduction of Darlene, planned for summer. One who has no idea how many offspring she has yet to create, but is making room for a very large family.

Joanne Tombrakos is a writer, business coach and speaker who inspires and creates change. She blogs on living and working after corporate America at One Woman’s Eye. Joanne was born to first generation Greek-Americans. She lives in New York City. The Secrets They Kept is her first novel.

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