I wasn’t going to write about this on here, at first, but I feel like I have to get it out in writing. Writing has always helped me to get feelings out and is one of the reasons I love to blog.
Lately I have been having problems with people I consider friends and family, even close friends, who have really made me upset when it comes to the topic of raising children.
Don’t get me wrong; I greatly value people’s advice and especially value those who have helped me when I have asked for it. I am beyond thankful for those who have given me some great tips and ideas, or recommended a good book to read, or have said “Breastfeeding is tough at first, but don’t worry, you can do it!”
However, it seems that when you are the one pregnant, everyone else who has had a child turns into “the expert.” I’m sorry, but if you are a first time parent of a 6 month old, you are no expert at raising children. The only person I would consider a “know-it-all” when it comes to babies/kids is Michelle Duggar. Yet I am quite sure even she would tell you that every child is a different story, like her little Josie who was born extremely premature.
I know people say they can’t help giving their opinions on something, but I find that hard to believe. I’ve never told a friend how I think they should raise their child, though I pray for those friends who are not raising their children in a home full of God’s love, peace, and joy. I would never send anyone, at all, a text message telling them I didn’t like the name they had chosen for their child. Nor would I walk up to a random stranger in the baby section of a store and tell them what brand of burp cloths to use. I would never tell a friend of a friend, one whom I’ve never met, what kind of stroller, diaper, car seat, bathtub, washcloth, or anything else, to use. I guess I just have a bit more class than that, and I try my hardest to respect others’ ideas and opinions about children, even if I don’t agree.
I’m not sure why the fact that I have chosen to breastfeed and use cloth diapers (though not all the time) has suddenly made some think I am a liberal, feminist, “Save the Whales,” hippie-like, mama-to-be. I think breastfeeding is the most natural and wonderful gift that God gave to mothers to take care of their children. Besides, I am not rich – I cannot afford formula just because “breastfeeding is weird.” Second, I know an incredible amount of wonderful, Christian women who use/have used cloth diapers and have not gone overboard on environmental issues.
I’ve also been told that I am moody and hormonal because these things have made me upset. I’m also moody, according to some, because I don’t believe every old wives’ tale about having a boy or girl (I know plenty of people with morning sickness who had boys, and plenty of people whose belly poked straight out that had girls). I think that even if I wasn’t pregnant, this is something that would bother me. And it honestly does hurt that any friend would say something like this at all.
Right now, I am not enjoying being pregnant because I feel alone, except for my fantastic, sweetheart of a husband. I am longing for some loving friends who have the guts to admit they don’t know everything about raising a baby, that their child is not perfect, and that even if you raise a child in the most structured, calm, Christian home, not everything is going to go according to your expectations or plans.
I long for a friend who is willing to walk beside me during this time, not one who points their finger and says “Do it my way.”
I am praying God will send me a fellow Mommy who loves the Lord and wants her children to know Him, without making me feel as though I might do something wrong and prevent my children from knowing Christ.
I hope that after our precious baby is born, he or she keeps me humble. I hope that I don’t ever think that I am a perfect mother or that I have all the answers. I hope that if and when my child chooses The Way, Truth, and Life, I don’t take the glory because of how I raised him or her. I pray every day that God will give me the strength to provide everything my child needs while keeping Him at the center of it all.