I have recently made the mistake of asking some questions or for advice for my baby on social media. While most people are kind and helpful, there are a few that have no place in giving their opinions. Men (no uterus, no opinion about pregnancy or breastfeeding). Women that have never experienced pregnancy, have no children, or even worked with children. People who are judgmental or unkind. You get the idea…
If I want to raise my baby vegan; that is MY right, and I do not need judgment from others. Especially from people who eat or feed their little ones red meat often. Do I go on their social medias and tell them how disgusting it is for them to feed their innocent babies animals’ bodies or taking photos of the animal they just killed? NO. Even though I do not agree with their choices and obviously think it’s disgusting and inhumane, it is not my place to tell them what to do. I can talk about it on my own, like I do blogging or on my pages, but I do not go out of my way to ridicule their lifestyle choices.
We have about 4 weeks until baby is due, and I am sick and tired of people’s unwanted opinions. I’m sick and tired of men giving anything more than their support. As a man, do you have a uterus? Have you ever carried a baby in your womb, experienced menstrual cycles, given BIRTH, or have the ability to nurse your baby? No? Then I (and other women) want nothing other than your support! Sometimes SILENCE is best.
Most thoughts and ideas I have kept to myself. I have a great support group who I trust completely, but the most important opinion is that of my husband. WE and we alone will name our baby, and then announce the name after the baby arrives. As two creative people, naming a child is sacred and special, and we want our child to feel that. In this case too, other people’s opinions matter less. Much less. If someone does not like our name choice or our way of parenting, then they do not have to choose it for themselves. We have to learn to trust in our abilities. We all have to learn to be kinder to others, and to ourselves.
A few weekends ago, I woke up in tears. Sobbing. The baby was not moving, and I immediately panicked. I am so used to little baby moving and dancing in my belly like it’s a party. My husband was in Nashville, and I was home alone with two kitties and our puppy. I got up to feed them and begged the baby to move. I prayed so hard, and thought I would have to go to the hospital if nothing changed. Thankfully, after I ate a bowl of oatmeal and drank some almond milk, the baby started moving. THANK GOD. I took a little nap and then drove to another town to teach a yoga class at a convention. The baby was back to normal, their usual action. I think they needed a little yoga encouragement to feel like themselves.
Did he/she sense my anxiety? Did baby know how uneasy I was feeling with Papa being out-of-town and worrying I would go into an early labor? I am not sure, but I hated feeling the way I did. My mind took over, and all I knew was fear. I was absolutely terrified of what could happen if my baby would not move.
This whole experience has taught me to think for myself, trust my instincts, and ask questions to specific people (doctors, trusted friends, experienced or new mothers, fellow vegans/vegetarians, etc.) when I need to. There is nothing wrong with asking for advice, but I also must protect my thoughts, heart, and decisions when reaching out. In turn, I also must think about how I give advice and use my own words to help others.
It always comes back to AHIMSA (non-harming/non-violence). If what I say is hurtful, the better choice is silence. Truth is wonderful and so important, but first must always come L O V E.