Peeta: Katniss... I don't know what kind of deal you made with Haymitch, but... He made me promises too. He can't save us both.
Katniss: *shrugs, tries to downplay it* I'm not sure he can save either one of us. I mean, where's he been? So far the games have begun, we've gotten one spile and that's it. Where is he?
Peeta: You know what I'm saying... If you die. And I life. I would have nothing. No one I care about. You're my whole life.
Peeta: Your family needs you. You have to live. For them.
Katniss: *photos in locket bring tears to her eyes, she turns to Peeta* What about you?
Peeta: *he smiles and gently shrugs, without any self-pity* No one needs me.
Katniss: *looks at him, almost seeing him for the first time* I do. I need you.
Peeta: *he turns -- not quite believing this*
Katniss: *leans in and kisses him -- THE FIRST PASSIONATE KISS OF HER LIFE, when she breaks he starts to object and she quiets him again*
Peeta: *finally he just kisses back, then takes the locket off, puts it around her neck*
Katniss: *smiles, locks in his eyes, touches his face, kisses him again*
Do you think that Katniss came around to the idea of having children? In MJ's epilogue she says that she had children because Peeta wanted them so badly. I've always thought she'd come around to the idea because the hunger games are no longer in existence and her children would be safer.
Just Me. Answer:
Yes, definitely. If you’re implying that maybe she was forced into it or didn’t want them herself, I don’t think that’s true. She did want them. For Katniss, having children would be everything she feared rolled into one and magnified.
Fear from her past:
- She didn’t want them to go into the Games.
- Katniss didn’t want to bring them into a world where they would have to starve and survive like she did.
- Children would also be something that she would love so much that the loss of them would hurt and break her. A love that she’s afraid of.
Being a mother, there is a level of fear when becoming a parent. There is responsibility and sacrifice involved. There is caring and loving a person. We feel these weighty things normally and we aren’t in a struggle for freedom like K&P. So, along with the natural fear of being a mother, Katniss carries an even greater burden.
In the quote I posted earlier, she mentions what she would ideally want for Peeta’s child: a world with no Games, no Capitol, where his child would be safe.
In the Epilogue, she says:
It took five, ten, fifteen years for me to agree. But Peeta wanted them so badly. When I first felt her stirring inside of me, I was consumed with a terror that felt as old as life itself. Only the joy of holding her in my arms could tame it. Carrying him was a little easier, but not much.
I think this is where people feel like Katniss didn’t want kids, but Peeta begged for fifteen years, and she finally relented. I don’t think that’s what the text is saying at all.
I think that there were these fears that she had to learn to live with and eventually overcame them which helped her to “agree.”
She learned that love was worth the risk of getting hurt:
it feels impossible to take pleasure in anything, because I’m afraid it could be taken away. That’s when I make a list in my head of every act of goodness I’ve seen someone do.
She also needed to see that the world was safe for their kids to live in and that would take time.
The arenas have been completely destroyed, the memorials built, there are no more Hunger Games. But they teach about them at school…
Basically, it took time for her to want to be a mother. With healing, with the Games gone and with Peeta there to reassure her, she was able to agree and have these babies with JOY.
I will always point out that the text does not, in fact, actually say that Peeta constantly asked about kids for fifteen years straight. It says that he wanted them, and Katniss knew. That’s it.
I also really dislike the implication that sometimes comes up in that discussion that if a woman says she doesn’t want kids at one point in her life then obviously she would never change her mind, ever. And I say this as someone who is quite ambivalent about the prospect of parenthood.
As someone who has resolutely not wanted children since a young age (though I am happy to be the eccentric auntie), I also fail to understand any reader outrage that Katniss has changed her mind. Admittedly, reproductive choices are extremely personal, and maybe that leads people to project their own feelings/thoughts onto the text, but I just don’t see any basis that Katniss’s decision to have children was OOC (even a little), that it was made under duress, or that Collins just slapped on the kids and marriage stuff because that’s what makes for a happily-ever-after and damned what Katniss wanted. And, to be honest, that last assertion (which I have seen) just makes me laugh because it’s not as if Collins portrays Panem family life in an idealized manner.
No matter what certain characters say, Katniss is not naive and Collins portrays her as being fully capable of making the decisions that are right for her. She may need to overcome of her fears of losing her children enough to have them, but I don’t see anything in the text to support the notion that she was childish or silly or immature to have those fears.
I think it’s important to remember also that Katniss and Peeta are barely 18 when Mockingjay ends and given their histories, it would be unwise (to say the least) for them to jump into starting a family. I have a very hard time thinking that Peeta, especially, would be eager to bring children into a relationship still struggling under the effects of the war, not to mention their own dysfunctional upbringings. It seems as though Peeta was raised in an abusive home (or, at least a home where abuse was sometimes present), and Katniss raised with an absentee parent. Those are DEEP issues to work through. It is a reasonable thing for two people to wait to have children until they’re ready, and there’s more to being ready for parenthood than just wanting children.
My love for the character may be blinding me, but I tend to imagine Peeta as being very thoughtful and deliberate, and I would think that he would, desire for them not withstanding, wait for children until their issues are resolved.
In other words, people tend to blame Katniss for the delay but I think Peeta had something to do with it, too. Deciding to have children is (should be) a decision between two people and there really isn’t a time limit for when that “should” happen.
I just love how Stelena fans and Dullena fans be like
“Caroline would never date Stefan because it’s breaking the girl code!” or “Bonnie won’t date Damon. Elena’s her friend she wouldn’t do that!”
But it’s totally ok for Elena to go back and forth to each brother and for Damon to break the bro code…#Logic right?
Perhaps three of the most depressing — subtle — things about Mockingjay are 1. how she imagines her reunion with Peeta
Alive and well — maybe not well but alive and here. Away from Snow. Safe. Here. With me. In a minute I can touch him. See his smile. Hear his laugh. … I’m lightheaded with giddiness. What will I say? Oh, who cares what I say? Peeta will be ecstatic no matter what I do. He’ll probably be kissing me anyway. I wonder if it will feel like those last kisses on the beach in the arena, the ones I haven’t dared let myself consider until this moment. … I’m disappointed that [my] face wasn’t the first he saw when he woke…
versus how it actually turns out.
…but he sees me now. His features register disbelief and something more intense that I can’t quite place. Desire? Desperation? Surely both, for he sweeps the doctors aside, leaps to his feet and moves toward me. I run to meet him, my arms extended to embrace him. His hands are reaching for me, to caress my face, I think.
My lips are just forming his name when his fingers lock around my throat. (all of the above, Mockingjay, pgs. 176 - 177)
and 2. the fact that this happens at midnight. At fucking midnight. Katniss keeps her promise to see him at midnight, and it’s subtle but Collins slips it in there…and it kills me every time.
It must be midnight, it must be tomorrow when Haymitch pushes open the door. ”They’re back. We’re wanted in the hospital.” My mouth opens with a flood of questions that he cuts off with “That’s all I know.” — Mockingjay, pg. 175
and 3. she keeps that promise more than once. “I’ll see you at midnight,” is everywhere.
At midnight, I’m standing outside the door to his cell, hospital room. — Mockingjay, pg. 229
and another one…
At midnight, I crawl out of my tent and position myself on a camp stool near the heater to take my watch with Jackson. — Mockingjay, pg. 269
And “The Hanging Tree” is there, and it reminds her of Peeta, perhaps because midnight is there as well…
If we met up at midnight in the hanging tree. (various page numbers)
Oh, and as far as the east coast goes…the teaser was released at midnight…I’m wondering if that’s just a coincidence…
What the fuck man. Now, I have to re-read this book.