Where EVERYONE is a maker

Episode 18: Your Childfree Cheerleader with Breanna Aguilar

Episode 18 cover art featuring podcast guest Breanna Aguilar

Ever feel like you need a little more support? Like maybe the cheerleader in your head could use a louder voice? Allow me to introduce you to Breanna Aguilar, your childfree cheerleader. 

Breanna is a second-generation Mexican-American, childfree advocate, and a warm-hearted woman who is “here to cheer you on in life.” She wants you to succeed, and ”to give [your] voice an ear. It’s something that a lot of us want, but not a lot of us get.”

Discussing her giant life transition and how the events of 2020 really turned life upside down, Breanna shares how she found the confidence to advocate for a medical treatment through the power of public speaking, and how that led to the creation of a children’s book (of all things!).

Breanna’s journey to finally schedule a hysterectomy is a wild ride—including topics like infertility, PCOS, endometriosis, HPV. If you find these to be a bit too sensitive for you, there will be a trigger warning inserted in the episode so you can skip past this portion of the show. You won’t want to miss out on her nerdiness around baseball, her desire to include you in the conversation, and how to join her community.

Find Breanna online at:

DM me on Instagram if you have questions about this week’s episode. And if you would like to apply to be on the podcast, fill out this form.

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[00:00] Paulette: Buen día y welcome to The Maker Muse Podcast, the place where childfree Spanglish speaking mujeres fuertes are inspired to find their confidence through creativity. I’m Paulette Erato the Maker Muse. I have Breanna Aguilarr on the podcast today, who is a second generation Mexican woman living in Arizona and a huge Diamondbacks fan.

[00:22] But I’ll let her tell you more about that. Two things I want to note for you. One is that there was a little bit of construction happening when we recorded this, which it was impossible to edit around, but I don’t think it’ll distract you from Breanna’s story. And two, we’re gonna hit some pretty heavy subjects around women’s health and hysterectomies and the like. If that’s too much for you, that’s okay. I’ll warn you before we dive into it and suggest how far to skip.

[00:48] So today we have with us Breanna Aguilar, who is a childfree woman, also of Latina descent .And Breanna today, you’re gonna to us about what your experience as a childfree Latina woman in the United States is like, and also, what else is going on for you?

[01:06] Breanna: Absolutely. I am so excited to be here. Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to share some of my story today.

[01:12] Paulette: I am really excited to hear it. You live in Arizona, is that correct?

[01:17] Breanna: I do. Yes.

[01:17] Paulette: But you were originally from LA, which is where I’m from.

[01:20] Breanna: Yeah, just a little bit north of LA, but Los Angeles gives people a good like perspective of where I would be from absolutely.

[01:27] Paulette: Um I hear you’re a Diamondbacks fan.

[01:29] Breanna: Oh my gosh. I am a huge Diamondbacks fan. I love baseball in general, and I love football as well, but baseball has my heart. Baseball has my heart. So we are in the thick of baseball season right now, and I couldn’t be happier.

[01:43] Paulette: So for those of you who are listening, we are actually recording this in June of 2022. So it is boys of summer season, which is I, I don’t, I don’t understand baseball at all. Football, I can get behind. Basketball, yes. Baseball’s so boring. Breanna, please tell me how could I get into the game?

[02:00] Breanna: So part of my love for baseball is the fact that I grew up playing softball. Um, so I have the hands on experience behind the mechanics, behind the strategy.

[02:12] What goes into making a good play? I was a pitcher when I played as well. So, you know, learning to throw different pitches, kind of getting to know your batters and what they like. And then using that, you know, that strength of mind to their detriment and being able to place the ball in different area.

[02:30] It’s exciting when you strike them out. It’s exciting when you know, they don’t hit the ball very far and you’re able to throw them out. So that started my love of everything. And then I actually had an injury when I was around 11 or 12 years old that took me out of softball completely. So this is kind of my way of still being involved with that world, with that community.

[02:50] Even though I had to end my softball career very early on.

[02:53] Paulette: That is so young to be taken out of a sport that you love.

[02:58] Breanna: Yeah, it was unfortunate, but that just was not the direction my life was meant to go. So this, you know, having baseball in my life definitely helps kind of fill in that void.

[03:06] Paulette: Everybody needs to have hobbies and sometimes, you know, just watching sports is a hobby. Like if that brings you joy, you don’t have to apologize for that.

[03:14] Breanna: Absolutely. And everybody kind of has their area of what I like to call like nerdiness. And so baseball is my area where I know a lot of, you know, statistics and who’s doing what and what teams are in what place. And to some people, it might sound like a completely different language.

[03:32] But when I get to talk to somebody that understands that language, I just it’s like, word vomit for me, it’s so much fun.

[03:40] Paulette: That’s how you know, you’re passionate about it. Right?

[03:42] Breanna touched on something really important here. Speaking the language with someone who understands it. Whether it’s an actual language like Spanish or the language of baseball, we have a tendency to gravitate towards people who can speak it too.

[03:55] That’s one way of describing community and I’m really big on community or what I call a support system here on this podcast. I’ve mentioned it on the marathon episode, the creative burnout one, and definitely in one of the weight lifting ones. I’ll leave you links in the show notes to each one, so you can check them out later. But we’re gonna come back to this idea later in the conversation too. For now, let’s learn more about Breanna.

[04:18] So now that we’ve like gotten the nerdiness into it, like our, our audience is now endeared to you because you love baseball. What else do we need to know about Breanna Aguilar?

[04:26] Breanna: Oh, my gosh. Well, I could, I could fill up hours talking about myself, which wasn’t always the case. I used to be very shy. I quite honestly, until recently did not feel like I had a story to tell. But when my eyes got opened up to the world of podcasting, it was something that I very much felt like that’s so cool.

[04:44] That’s something I would love to do. I would love to be a guest on a podcast. I’d love to have a podcast. What the heck am I gonna say though? So now I really have come into my own with, you know, I, I grew up in Southern California realizing the way that I grew up in a diversified environment is not the norm for everybody.

[05:04] Not everybody has that opportunity. Growing up in a Latin household is a whole experience on its own.

[05:11] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[05:12] Breanna: And actually going through a lot of life experiences to, you know, now where we’re in this pandemic for how long and the pandemic has actually completely changed my life, both for the better and for the worse.

[05:27] So right now I’m just in the middle of this giant life transition. You know, changing career, actually on a work break, there’s a lot going on.

[05:38] Paulette: Before we dive into Breanna’s life transition, I’m gonna take this opportunity to let you know there’s some heavy subject matter coming up. We’re gonna be talking about the pandemic lockdown, catching COVID, polycystic ovaries syndrome also known as P C O S, endometriosis, HPV, and hysterectomies. If this isn’t something you’re in the right head space to listen to right now, that’s okay. I’d recommend skipping to the 17 minute and 26 second mark instead.

[06:04] Breanna: I can start with June of 2020.

[06:07] Paulette: Okay. Let’s

[06:08] Breanna: that was, that’s kind of,

[06:10] Paulette: that was, that was kind of a big time in our, all of our lives wasn’t it?

[06:13] Breanna: Yeah. I mean the world shut down, you know, March of that year and in June, unfortunately I came down with COVID.

[06:20] Paulette: Oh no.

[06:21] Breanna: My whole family came down with COVID and it was extreme. I mean, it was not one of the cases, unfortunately, where it was just, you know, you don’t feel great for a couple of days and then you’re back on your feet.

[06:32] I was down for about three weeks, and then I just wasn’t getting better. And through a lot of testing, a lot of doctor’s visits, we actually figured out that I have P C O S, which is polycystic ovarian syndrome.

[06:46] Paulette: Oh, wow.

[06:47] Breanna: So got that diagnosis and then was also diagnosed with endometriosis, which is not fun.

[06:53] If you are familiar with what that is, you know, that it can be extremely painful. And it’s really taken the wind out of my sails. Trying to go back to work after that felt nearly impossible. And actually at the beginning of this year, so January of 2022, I actually had to stop working.

[07:11] Paulette: Yeah.

[07:11] Breanna: Because my body just couldn’t handle it anymore.

[07:14] So I’m very fortunate that I have financial support from my family right now. And I’m living with them as a 32 year old adult. That is not the easiest thing in the world to do, but I’m so grateful that I’m in a position where I was able to put my health first. And so right now I’m actually in the process of seeking a hysterectomy.

[07:36] I’ve been in this process for 10 months now. It’s been a real fight between doctors visits and insurance, but I do finally have my procedure scheduled for July 25th. So…

[07:48] Paulette: Congratulations!

[07:50] Breanna: Thank you. Yeah. So it’s, it’s really been a lot. And I don’t plan on going back into the field that I was in. I was in the pet industry for 14 years.

[08:01] I did everything from dog training and grooming to customer service. My most recent work was as a ,pet sitter. I really dove into the world of pet nutrition was helping people with, you know, their pet’s allergies, various illnesses. Helping them through the nutritional aspect of it to help whatever treatments they were going through.

[08:22] So it’s been a long time that I’ve been in the pet industry and it’s all that I know. So taking this break from work has been very interesting to kind of free up the opportunity for me to see what I actually want to do next. I mean, this was an industry I just kind of fell into. There was never a plan to be in it for this long.

[08:42] And now I have so many options and opportunities in front of me. It’s a little scary to try and narrow down, you know, what you wanna focus your energy on.

[08:53] Paulette: Oh, the wealth of choices.

[08:55] Breanna: Yes, absolutely. It’s endless.

[08:59] Paulette: it’s both good and bad, but I think we should just focus on the good, because you get to try out a lot of things now then, and see really what fits.

[09:08] Breanna: Yeah. I’m excited for it.

[09:11] Paulette: So am I. I’m excited for you. I’m really sorry to hear that you were diagnosed with PCOS and endometriosis, and now you need the hysterectomy in order to, to function, right? And that’s something that a mid thirties woman, I’ve had that discussion with my gynecologist as well, is hard to come by.

[09:28] Even when like, that is the solution.

[09:30] Breanna: Mm-hmm.

[09:31] Paulette: Do you wanna talk about what that has been like?

[09:33] Breanna: Sure. And actually those two diagnoses were not what sealed the deal for my hysterectomy. It was actually that some of my tests had come back high risk, HPV positive. So yeah, human papillomavirus, which causes a lot of cervical cancers.

[09:51] And that was a big concern for me as well. It wasn’t something that’s actively affecting me right now, but it was definitely a concern of mine. So those three things combined have… sometimes it’s hard to find the words for how much of an adventure or a rollercoaster, whatever words you wanna put to it have been the last couple of years. But in reality, I’ve had these for a long time.

[10:16] We just didn’t have a word to put to it. In my family those symptoms were normalized. In my family you didn’t go to the doctor really, unless you were like dying. So, you know, not having the, the knowledge that something could actually be wrong and maybe something could be done to help treat and having gone through all these years of suffering…

[10:35] Now that I’m aware, I’m able to process a lot of the things that are going on. The decision to have a hysterectomy, for me personally, it was not that difficult of a choice being that I am decidedly childfree.

[10:50] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[10:51] Breanna: And a lot of people were saying like, you know, you have to really kind of prepare to mourn and grieve after, and I don’t know how I’m gonna feel after.

[11:00] So I’m still preparing for that. But because I have made that decision to not bring children into this world, I feel like maybe it’s a little bit easier for me to go through with this procedure, knowing that I’m hopefully going to feel better on the other side of it.

[11:16] Paulette: I hope so for your sake too. Did the decision, first of all, let’s talk about being childfree, if you don’t mind. Is that a conscious decision you think you’ve made and did it come because of these diagnoses or before that?

[11:31] Breanna: So the diagnoses were kind of the icing on the cake for me. If you wanna get into like the bread of the cake.

[11:37] Paulette: Yes, let’s please. Bread is delicious.

[11:40] Breanna: Oh my gosh. And then you put frosting on it’s even better.

[11:42] So I from a very young age, did not want children. My earliest memories are me telling my mom I’m not gonna have kids until I’m 50, because it wasn’t something that I was interested in. And I have, uh, an older sibling that had nine children, you know, she, so my first niece was born when I was five.

[12:02] Paulette: Oh, wow.

[12:03] Breanna: And then my mom opened a daycare when I was eight. And she opened the daycare so that way she could stay home and be present more for my brother and myself, my younger brother and myself. And at the same time, she’s running a business. She’s making money. So kids were a constant in my life. You know, there was not a summer vacation where kids didn’t exist in my house.

[12:25] We might go on vacations and we did. Every summer my mom made sure she took a couple weeks off of work. We would go somewhere on vacation. But children were constant in my house until I moved out when I was 17. So that, to me validated a lot of the feelings that I was having about really not wanting a family. It was, I’ve been around these kids for so long.

[12:43] I see what’s going into it. I see that how much time they spend here with us at the daycare versus with their parents because their parents are having to work. So it just, it wasn’t really something that I was interested in. And as I got older, you know, we hear all of those childfree bingos. If you’re not familiar with what a childfree bingo is.

[13:02] Paulette: Oh my gosh. Bingos.

[13:03] Breanna: Yes. It’s just, it’s a statement that we’re used to getting a response that we’re used to getting when somebody doesn’t necessarily believe that we truly don’t want children.

[13:13] Paulette: If we can delve into that real quick. So think of like a bingo game for those of you who are, have never heard this term where it’s just a series of statements that come up so often that we can win bingo in one conversation with somebody who does not believe that we don’t want children. Things like, oh, you don’t know, you’ll change your mind. You know, when you get married, it’ll be different. It’s different when they’re your own and so on and so forth.

[13:38] So being bingoed means you hear one of those statements.

[13:41] Breanna: Yeah. So most you know, most of my twenties, I was bingoed. I was in a six year relationship where I thought, this is it we’re gonna get married. I vocalized that I didn’t want children. He really wanted children. He said he was fine with just having one. And at that time I thought, okay, is this what I’m supposed to do?

[14:02] Am I supposed to settle? Am I supposed to get married? Am I supposed to have the kid? All these people are telling me, you know, this is what you’re supposed to want, but I don’t want it. I don’t see this for. Those feelings were very, very strong. And then that relationship ended. And when I came out of it, I could not be more grateful for the fact that I did not have children with that person.

[14:25] And so going through, going through a couple years of dating, finding a new relationship, that person was completely fine with not having children. That that was something we actually discussed when we really decided, okay, this could be something serious and something special. He made sure to let me know that having a family was not something that was going to be in his future.

[14:48] And if I wanted to do that, he was very okay with me walking away and he wouldn’t hold it against me. And that conversation was such a relief for me because it allowed me to really vocalize I’m on the same page. I don’t want children. I don’t want a family in the traditional sense of having lots of children, because we can define families in many different ways.

[15:09] So that was a huge relief for me, that took a lot of weight off of my shoulders. And then getting diagnosed with these things, I almost feel like infertility might have been a weird little guardian angel on my shoulder that allowed me to get this far without ever having a child.

[15:28] Paulette: Wow.

[15:30] Breanna: So it’s a really weird twist for me to come this far and realize like, I, I may have been infertile all this time and I didn’t know it, but I arrived at this choice on my own before I ever realized that it might not be an option for me.

[15:45] And that allowed me to really move through some of the issues that I had without that extra factor that some people who experience infertility unfortunately have to go through. There’s a lot of emotions involved when they’re actively trying to have a child and it’s not working for them. So I truly feel, I still feel strongly that the decision to be childfree was my choice.

[16:07] My body just happened to align with what I wanted.

[16:10] Paulette: That is a beautiful way to spin what can be a very tragic situation. So I applaud you for having that outlook and, you know, for those of us who, who have never really wanted children, it’s almost a relief to be told you can’t have them. And we recognize that that’s not true for everyone, but it is true for us.

[16:28] And it’s okay to be okay with that.

[16:31] Breanna: Yeah. And you know, I feel like one of the bingos that’s out there is how could you waste your womb or your uterus, because you don’t wanna bring a child into this world. And it’s like, that’s one that I, I don’t ever wanna hear from somebody, but if it happens to come up, it is a perfect teachable moment to say, Hey, let me welcome you to this world of problems that affect 10 to 15% of our population and causes fertility issues.

[17:01] Because you could say this to somebody else and it’s gonna be taken to heart and it’s gonna cause some real hurt feelings. So I haven’t had to do that yet, but I’m prepared just in case.

[17:12] Paulette: You’re out there fighting the good fight, Breanna.

[17:15] Breanna: I try.

[17:17] Paulette: Well, I applaud that and I congratulate you. And so your hysterectomy is scheduled. That’s gonna go forward. So I wish you much healing, much super fast healing on that. I’m, I’m really happy that you’re able to have the procedure, even if it’s not for the, the best reasons.

[17:33] As you listen to this next section, I want you to pay special attention to what Breanna says about art and some stories she used to tell herself. See if you can catch it.

[17:43] So, Breanna, what are you creating these days? Because on this podcast, we celebrate that everybody is creative. Everybody is a maker. So what is it that you make? What is it that you put out into the world?

[17:54] Breanna: I’m actually really excited to talk about this because I was somebody that used to tell myself this lie that I wasn’t creative.

[18:03] Paulette: Mm.

[18:03] Breanna: But it was in my head, I had this idea of what creativity was. It was people that could draw

[18:10] Paulette: mm-hmm

[18:10] Breanna: really amazing art. It was people that could paint these beautiful pictures and portraits. So I have really had to tap into my brain. And let it know those are not the only ways of being creative.

[18:23] Paulette: See what she did there? Someone’s been listening to this podcast. If you have no idea what I’m referring to, then go check out episode six from the first season, it’s called the lies we tell about ourselves. Breanna recognized a story that she used to believe was true. And has since overcome that. Yay.

[18:39] Breanna: So one of the things that I’m really proud of, that’s a little bit on hold right now, but it’s a passion project of mine that I would really love to finish, is I wrote a children’s book. And it happened completely by accident.

[18:56] I was actually taking a speaking course with this wonderful, wonderful Canadian by the name of Jam Gamble. She teaches people how to trust in their voice and make it their superpower regardless of setting. A lot of people perceive it as a public speaking thing.

[19:13] It really helps you in all areas of your life. So for me, it helped me with medical advocacy and it helped me even communicating with my own family. But one of the assignments that we had to do, I didn’t have the proper material for. And I ended up writing my own children’s book to complete the assignment based off of some jokes between my boyfriend and I, that we had had.

[19:34] So. The story’s written, the story wrote itself I just happen to be the one holding the pen. And I am very much looking forward to being able to illustrate it and get it out to the world. I don’t have any expectations. I’m not attached to an outcome other than just to finish this process and publish it.

[19:53] Paulette: How exciting.

[19:55] Breanna: Yeah. It’s I never, never, ever planned on doing this. I do love writing. And that’s something that I’m tapping into as well right now with just really trying to document this whole process that I’ve been on this whole adventure that I’ve been on of trying to seek a hysterectomy, going through some of these issues that I’m going through.

[20:15] So writing has been my creative outlet, which I never really perceived writing to necessarily be a creative outlet. So it’s been really nice to reframe how I look at writing and dive into that world.

[20:30] Paulette: Did you hear how she said she didn’t think writing was a creative outlet, but she’s reframed that thinking? That’s growth! That’s recognizing that art exists everywhere, which I talked about all the way at the beginning of season one. That made me so happy for her. Not only is she giving herself an outlet for all the turmoil in her life, she’s allowing herself to enjoy making art.

[20:55] Breanna: And then another creative adventure that I have recently started with the wonderful LeNora Faye she’s @childfreeblog [on Instagram].

[21:03] She’s a huge childfree advocate. And we do a weekly Instagram show called Boobies, not Babies.

[21:11] Paulette: Such a great title.

[21:13] Breanna: It’s so fun. And it’s just her and I popping on Instagram. We, so we talk on Clubhouse often, we host conversations on clubhouse often, but Clubhouse isn’t always accessible the times that we do it, aren’t always accessible for everybody.

[21:27] And we realize. That some people just don’t like the app. We realize that we understand it. It’s totally okay. So us doing this Instagram show has just allowed us to change up the times for certain people based on their availability. It’s really nice to also chat with somebody when you can see their face.

[21:45] Like I love Clubhouse but there’s just this certain level it goes to, I feel like, when you can have a face to face conversation with somebody. And we talk about everything. We talk about childfree things. We talk about our personal lives and things that are going on. We talk about maybe some things that are going on in the world at that moment.

[22:05] You know, current events we throw in a, you know, celebrity or two, that’s nice to look at. So we kind of go all over the place with our conversations, but we really like to let it flow. We like to get interactive with whoever happens to be watching. And it’s just a really fun thing to do that I never imagined myself doing, opening up and putting my face out there for the world to see. You know, my little corner of the internet. So, I mean, that kind of rounds out. What I feel like is my personal creativity right now.

[22:37] Paulette: We’ll leave a link in the show notes for anybody who wants to go check out these Instagram lives. Do you also want to invite people to Clubhouse?

[22:43] Breanna: Oh my gosh. Yes. So Clubhouse is a free app that you can download on your phone and you can search –if you are a childfree person– you can search for Childfree Club. And request to join, let them know that Breanna sent you and you’ll get approved. So it’s a lot of fun. LeNora runs what we call Childfree Morning Chat. That’s Monday through Friday at 10:00 AM Eastern. It’s usually an hour long room and it’s kind of, of free flow.

[23:10] Sometimes we might have something that we really want to discuss. Sometimes we’re just kind of running around the room, not really sure, and somebody will bring up a topic. But yeah, absolutely. If you guys want to join, I highly encourage you to download the app search, for the Childfree Club.

[23:28] The rooms are a lot of fun. It’s a great way to meet people. We’re very global. It’s incredible to meet how global the childfree network is. There are people that come into the rooms from Pakistan, from India. We’ve had some Japanese people join, people from the Philippines. So it’s, it’s a lot of fun to meet new people from different places in the world and hear their childfree stories.

[23:52] Paulette: It is. And that’s part of why I’m, I’m, I’m enjoying these conversations with other people who we share a cultural connection. And full disclosure, this is how you and I met. We met in Clubhouse Childfree Club one morning, not too long ago. And I was like, wait, you’re Latina and childfree. We need to talk. And she’s like, yes,

[24:13] So here we are. And it’s happening. We make, we make shit happen on this podcast. So that’s really exciting stuff. We’ll leave a, a link in the show notes for the Clubhouse Club right? That’s what they’re called.

[24:23] Breanna: Yes.

[24:23] Paulette: And then there’s like individual chat rooms.

[24:26] Breanna: Mm-hmm

[24:26] Paulette: I’m still trying to figure out Clubhouse. So if I sound like geriatric, that’s why. So last big question for you, Breanna, what do you think about a legacy? Because one of the bingos that we’re so used to getting is, well, who’s gonna remember you if you don’t have kids?

[24:41] Breanna: So there’s a lot of ways to leave a legacy and to make an impact in this world. And mine really hasn’t been defined or, or really presented itself to me until the last couple of years. Going through the health issues that I’ve been going through, I feel very strongly that there needs to be better education for younger people that are going to experience some of these issues.

[25:06] Because it’s not normal. And I don’t want anybody to end up in my shoes, you know, in their thirties wondering what the heck is going on with their body. When all of these things are suddenly just changing and, and not in a good way.

[25:20] And then to find out at this age that these are things I could have been working on from a very young age, and I could have managed from a very young age. That to me is very important. Rather than, you know, having children that traditionally wouldn’t even carry my last name because I’m in the United States.

[25:38] And it’s so common for a woman to take a man’s last name. To me, that’s not important. But I really feel like I can make an impact on young people’s lives just with getting my story out there. Letting people know if you feel that something’s not right with your body, go to a doctor. And if that doctor dismisses, you go to another doctor. Find a support group, find people that are going through the things that you’re going through.

[26:02] Not only to feel validated and supported, but to potentially find people that have found medical help in areas that might be accessible to you. I think that’s very important. If I can help somebody on their journey, maybe cut a step or two, like I said, I’ve been on this journey of trying to get hysterectomy for the last 10 months.

[26:24] It shouldn’t take 10 months for this to happen. My surgery is scheduled almost a year to the date of my first referral that I had. So I really feel strongly about documenting this process and giving it to the world. Whether it’s some sort of memoir, if it turns into a blog, there’s so many ways that it could go, creating a community online.

[26:47] Like, I just want people to know that it doesn’t have to be like this. You don’t have to suffer physically this much for this long. There’s help out there. But when so many of these symptoms are normalized and we’re told it’s just part of being a woman, it’s so hard to find that help, to be believed and to have, you know, a support system that’s gonna advocate for you, advocate with you and just be there to really hold you when you need that moment of extra support, because things get hard. They get really hard when you’re going, when you’re navigating the medical system. And I realize that there are parts of the world that don’t even get this type of care.

[27:30] And that’s another thing that I feel strongly about. So for me, you know what, I see a legacy becoming is advocacy. Not only for childfree people, but for people that are suffering with medical issue. So that for me, that that is really what’s most important. There can be documents, there can be books.

[27:49] There can be these things that have my name on them that are going to help generations to come. And to me, that really matters.

[27:57] Paulette: That’s amazing. I’m kind of overwhelmed by your story because prior to recording this, we didn’t, we didn’t know this, this is where the story was gonna go. Right? So this has been a very raw and very unfiltered story that you’re telling.

[28:08] And I’m a little bit. I got in my emotions over here, listening to you talk about this, because you’ve spoken about it so eloquently. It’s obvious that you have taken this suffering that you’ve endured and are going to do something about it. And I’m very proud of you for being able to do that because it takes a lot of strength.

[28:27] So congratulations to you for even having that. Oh, thank you. And I love what you said about there’s there’s different ways to leave a legacy and yours is advocacy and that’s super important.

[28:38] Breanna: Mm-hmm.

[28:39] Paulette: In this last part of the interview, I asked Breanna if she’s the first childfree person in her family. And she said, yes! She also talks about this quote unquote life formula that we all think we have to live by. I’ve talked about this topic before and I call it the life script that society makes us believe we have to follow. Like going to college and being married by a certain age and having kids and a dog and a white picket fence.

[29:03] And I always follow that up with: that’s bullshit. Breanna talks about how following the life script or life formula isn’t for her either. So listen closely. And what I really want you to take away from this is how much thought Breanna is given to this decision. Contrary to popular belief around people who are childfree, Breanna isn’t being flaky in her decision. She’s weighed her pros and cons, as many of the people you will hear on this show have too. This isn’t a selfish act for us instead. This is a demonstration of true self-awareness.

[29:38] Breanna: Yeah, so grow. I mean, growing up, I’m second generation Mexican, and it’s just expected that you’re going to find somebody and you’re gonna settle down and you’re gonna have babies. Everybody that I knew that’s the direction that they were headed.

[29:53] Everybody in my family. I mean, it was just this formula that you plug in the variables and then you end up married with kids. That, that was it. That was what was expected. And I mean, even. I can remember growing up and saying, I, I really don’t have a desire to have kids. And family members would say, well, you know, you’re still a little young, you’ll change your mind when you meet the right person.

[30:13] Or again, those childfree bingos, certain things I would vocalize. And I would hear, well, just wait till you have kids. You’ll understand. But I’m not, I’m not having kids. So, but definitely growing up in that Latin culture and that, you know, Mexican household, that was just the expectation. That’s what everybody did.

[30:31] And I always knew in my heart, I don’t wanna do this. This isn’t something that feels right to me. But again, at one point I had kind of settled in that expectation of, well, I guess this is gonna happen. It never happened. And I’m thankful for that.

[30:49] Paulette: Did you get a lot of pushback from your parents or other family members?

[30:53] Breanna: I don’t feel like I got pushback necessarily. Well, okay. I take that back. I, but I wouldn’t call it pushback. I know for a little bit, there was some expression from my parents of wanting to be grandparents. They wanted me to bring grand babies into the world. And for a little bit, it did weigh on me. Like, am I letting them down?

[31:14] Is this something that I’m really supposed to be doing? Everybody has done this for so many years, but I couldn’t get past the fact that I really didn’t wanna do this. And I would sit with my own thoughts and think like, if I bring a kid into this world that I really don’t want, but I’m filling other people’s needs, how is that relationship going to go between me and that child?

[31:35] They’re going to be able to pick up, you know, even if I had the kid and I was like, this is the greatest thing to happen to me, but that resentment. I, I couldn’t bear the thought of possibly having that resentment. I would rather regret not having the child, and not having to worry about that type of resentment being passed on.

[31:57] And also the genetic factors of the things that I know now that I’m going through, those would’ve been passed on as well. How can I consciously bring a human into this world knowing that they are going to suffer at a certain age because of the genetic issues that I have?

[32:13] That was not okay with me either. So I did get some pushback for a little bit. I think a lot of it just had to do with my parents wanting the grandparent experience, which I can’t blame them. That’s again, something that’s just expected. There’s this whole life formula that we’re all given. So it was a change for them.

[32:29] And. I, I think that they’re okay with it now, especially knowing the medical issues that I’m going through. They want their daughter to be around, you know, that’s, what’s important to them now. So that has been very helpful to have that support from them while I’m going through this. And one of my aunts specifically, when I was talking to her about a lot of the medical issues, I remember her telling me, you always said you never wanted kids and that’s okay.

[32:55] It’s, it’s not a choice that everybody has to make. And she, herself as a mother.

[32:59] Paulette: Mm-hmm.

[32:59] Breanna: So having her just say that straight out to me was very helpful as well. Knowing like she heard me all those years ago. It just, it made me feel good to know like, okay, somebody heard me back then. And they’re seeing now that what I said was truly what I wanted.

[33:15] And hopefully that helps the younger people in my family that are gonna go through these experiences too. If they decide that they don’t wanna bring children into the world.

[33:24] Paulette: So Breanna, is there anything else that you would love for people to know about you, about your experiences, anything to like cap this all off?

[33:34] Breanna: That is such a good question. I would really hope that anybody that resonates with anything that I said, and feel free to find me on social media and reach out. I love having conversations and I love talking with people. I truly treasure the people that I get to have conversations with. And that’s really what I wanna do is just have conversations right now at this point in my life. Be an open door for people to come and, and speak with me.

[34:05] Even if we don’t necessarily have the same viewpoints on things. I am willing to have the conversations with people just to listen to them, just to give their voice an ear. It’s something that a lot of us want, but not a lot of us get. And if anybody out there is suffering from any of these issues as well, feel free to get in touch. I would love to cheer you on.

[34:31] So I actually have a Instagram account that’s called childfree cheerleader. And while it is mainly for the childfree community and supporting people’s choices, I really just want to cheer people on in their lives. I feel like there’s not enough of that for a lot of us. And if I can be a positive light for somebody that to me is helping me leave my legacy.

[34:53] Paulette: Yay. I think everybody needs a cheerleader inside their head, but if you’re still working on that, I’ll definitely have all of Breanna’s social media handles down in the show notes, be sure to seek her out. She is a lovely conversationalist.

[35:08] As you heard from this interview, she was very easy to talk to. But don’t be afraid to reach out to either one of us, quite frankly, but if you are suffering from some of the issues that Breanna discussed, give her a little nudge and, and get yourself some support on that end. Breanna, thank you so much for sharing your story, for sharing this time with us.

[35:29] Can I ask you a favor?

[35:31] Breanna: Sure.

[35:31] Paulette: You’ve listened to the podcast. So you know how this podcast ends.

[35:37] Breanna: I do. Can I say it?

[35:39] Paulette: Yes, please do.

[35:40] Breanna: And that’s a burrito!

[35:43] Paulette: Wanna talk about this week’s episode? Feel free to DM me on Instagram. My info is always in the show notes. And if you’re looking to be a guest in the future for the The Maker Muse Podcast, check out the guest form on my website at the maker muse.co.

[35:56] Yes, the maker muse.co. It’s also linked in the show notes. And hey muchisimas gracias, for listening to another episode of The Maker Muse Podcast. Are you subscribed? If not now would be a great time to do that. New episodes come out every Tuesday. I’m on Apple on Spotify, wherever you listen. And then can I ask you a favor?

[36:18] Could you please tell all of your friends and family about it? ¿Sus amigues, su familia? Because if you love it, they probably will too. And I’d really appreciate it if you could rate and review it wherever you’re listening, right now. ¡Hasta la proxima!

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