I don't have children. I don't plan to.
I have animals. Together, my partner and I have two cats, a dog and a bird. These are as close to having children as I plan to come.
Another kink in bidding is whether a country permits you to bring pets. For example, Cairo has positions that would work for both of us. But because of bird flu, they don't allow birds of any kind to be brought into the country.
So my African Grey could not come.
For me, that is a deal breaker. I have had her for 13 years, since she was four months old. I got her one month after my mother died.
She is my baby.
We give up a lot to be in the Foreign Service. We miss our nieces and nephews growing up. We miss precious time with our extended families. Milestones, birth, deaths and marriages, are the stuff of emails, not memories.
We shouldn't give up everything. In fact, I would argue that being willing to give up everything means you have a commitment to nothing. And I think that makes for a worse, not better, FSO.
So I am not bidding on Cairo.