Losing My Fertility in Cambodia

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I’m riding through the back roads of Siem Reap, Cambodia, on the back of a motorbike.  As much as I’d love to be the one driving, that just isn’t done in Siem Reap.  They’d rather have tourists hire drivers than attempt to drive on their own.

That said, I’m having a great time exploring the temples of Angkor from here – I’d much rather be on a bike than in a tuk-tuk.  On the bike in front of us is a family of four: a father driving with a little girl in front of him, a mother on the back holding a baby boy.  Just another day in Cambodia!

My driver is trying to make the baby laugh – waving at him, dancing, pointing to him and laughing.  The baby stares, his eyes like obsidian marbles.

“You love babies?” I ask my driver.


“Me, too.  You have a baby?”

“No.  You have baby?”

“No,” I laugh.

“How old are you?”

Oh, here it comes.


“Ack!” he chokes.  We both laugh.

“Yes, I’m old!  I know!” I say.

“Twenty-two, twenty-three is good to have baby.”

“Yeah, that’s nice.”

“Maybe you have baby in September,” he suggests.

We make boom boom today, you have baby in September? I know that’s what he’s thinking.  “Jesus Christ, let’s hope not,” I tell him.

As we drive on, the landscape is as dry and dusty as my twenty-six-year-old uterus.  And I think to myself…I love my life.  I love my life so much.  And I love that there’s no baby in it.

Will that change someday?  Maybe.  Maybe it won’t.  For now?  Play on, playa.

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27 thoughts on “Losing My Fertility in Cambodia”

  1. Funny post Kate! I kept running into the same questions while traveling in Asia as well. Imagine the horror when I tell people I’m 30! They practically fall over but I’m in the same boat as you so play on, playa! And I’m going to give you a fist bump for that! =)

  2. Funny post, And I can relate to that. Im not planning to have one anytime soon. I tell them im helping the world with it’s overpopulation problem.

  3. As a born-and-bred Southerner, I have to contend with this regularly. I’m 27 (almost 28!) and married, and we have NO PLANS of kidlets. And people just DON’T understand this–not the people back home, not our friends in San Francisco, and especially not the people I meet on the road in countries where they have a small army of 10 kids by the time they’re 30.

    Play on, playa. I’m with you 1000%.

  4. My mom is the only person in my family that DOESN’T pressure me to have babies… and I’m 22 and single! In the US South, particularly, most people are married, have kids, or sometimes both by my age. (Another reason I’m dying to get out of Alabama.)

    But I’ve been telling my mom since I was 15 that I didn’t want kids and that still hasn’t changed, despite having a niece and nephew and various HS friends with a brood of their own now. And anyway, it’s not so much the older kids anymore (they’re ok, sometimes) but I still hate babies and their disgusting everything (ew poop and pee and barf and gross), and pregnancy still FREAKS ME OUT. Honestly, everytime I see a pregnant woman I’m like, “OMG SOMETHING IS GROWING IN THERE WTF” So if I ever do change my mind about kids, I’d rather adopt a needy one from Africa or Asia or somewhere than ever pop out one myself.

  5. Wow if you’re too old to have children, I’m practically dust. 37 years young 😛 … Eh, you know, not that I can bear children anyway.

  6. Oh yes. I was cornered this Christmas by my aunt and chastised for not having children while I was “young” (20/21). The “young” boat has sailed at 28 and I’m still not sure if and when!

  7. Well, they do say the quality of your eggs starts to decline at age 30! If you do want kids, have them within the next 10 years!

    BTW, I had a dream the night before you posted this that you had to come home from your trip because you got PREGNANT!!!

  8. Oh, cultural differences…. I went to visit my family in Syria at age 15 and my grandmother told my father to leave me there because she could probably find me a husband within a month. Needless to say, he told her I had to go home and finish high school first. But I was looking around my mom’s group the other day and realizing that, at 28, I was the youngest mom there.

    I eagerly await the moment far off in the future where you have kids and start blogging about traveling to exact locales with small children and give me hope that I’m not condemned to spend the rest of my life hanging around the suburbs of Massachusetts changing diapers!

    1. LOL! Too funny, Karawan. Thanks for stopping by the blog…I know how busy you must be with the baby! (And…check out ourtravellifestyle.com and soultravelers3.com for great sites for traveling with kids!)

  9. Oh man! Everytime I go visit my family in Alabama, everyone is so mesmerized by the fact I’m 24 and I don’t have children, nor am I planning on having any until I’m at LEAST 30. This post is HILARIOUS!

  10. lol and you are only 26.. I just turned 32 and have no intention whatsoever to get married. Besides, I’m in China right now and I’m too old even to hope to find a husband, so no problem at all 😛

  11. I’m not even close to thinking about children yet, but having said that I’ve been inspired by all of the awesome family travel blogs out there. I now know that if I do have children some day it is possible to travel and raise children. 🙂

  12. Cynthia McCulley

    Hilarious post! I suppose I should get on this baby thing as I will be 27 next month….man, who knew people could live this long!?

  13. The boom boom line is hilarious!
    We are 30 now and we choose traveling life still. It’s difficult for family back home in Indonesia to understand the decision, to not settle down and have babies. I think my every month I will hear the baby-plan question from family or friends at least once.

  14. Nice post, don’t let Cambodian man make you feel bad for no baby. We would not be hearing adventure from Kate if baby was coming. I want to keep traveling as much as I can before babies come, so I’m right there with you.

    One day, I want to be blessed with that next stage, but right now… I like skipping meals and sleeping late…and starting my road to grad school. Life is good.

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