It is possible to be married, focus on your career, and still want to have children. There's nothing wrong with wanting a family. Just like there's nothing wrong with not wanting a family. But the place where we go wrong as a society is criticizing those who do want a family. Whether you're 18, 25, 30, 45, and so on, you're allowed to plan for your future and if that plan involves a family, you shouldn't feel ashamed.
I'm tired of living in this "progressive" time where other women criticize you for being married young and wanting to grow your family. As a 25-year-old married woman, it's not backward to have those wishes because I know I can still put an emphasis on my career. My end goal isn't to have my life revolve around the home, be at home 24/7, putting a hot meal on the table every single day, etc. On that same note, my end goal isn't to become obsessed over my career, never see my future children, and have a nanny replace my familial responsibilities. But I do still feel that women are the only ones who can carry new life into this world.
Sometimes it feels like society forgets why we work so hard. I grew up with family values instilled in me that we work hard so we can provide for our families and create a positive life where we can thrive. Maybe it's my American born of immigrant parents mindset, but I intend to carry this forward for the family my husband and I create. We weren't placed in the universe to live lonely lives, where our jobs and careers fill the space of human connection. I definitely don't think literally searching for a significant other is the way to go either. I do believe that the higher power works a little bit of magic to place the right people in your life at some point. I don't believe the right person gets placed in your life at the right time, though. This is where the "test" aspect comes into play. Which is why it's very easy to overlook this person or occurrence.
We have grown accustomed to neglecting the rights and happiness we deserve from growing a family. Maternity leave sucks at most companies and newly returning mothers face repercussions after having taken maternity leave. Paternity leave is a fairly newer benefit and most companies don't even offer it. Therefore the burden is heavily placed on mothers. Society doesn't make it easy for one to emphasize their home life and create a family. There's a ton of obstacles and then some major career-related repercussions.
However, when I die, I'm not going to wish I had another day at work or I had gotten that promotion. I'm going to care about the family I created and how I positively contributed to society, not my job. Which is why I'm determined to make both thrive in unison. Because ultimately at the end of the day, what makes me most happy is doing rewarding work and leaving a legacy behind.