So this post might end up being more of a rant and I know many of my friends are going to disagree with me on this one, but we all have the right to our own opinions and our own way of raising a child. As soon as the word was out that I was pregnant, other mothers started giving me all sorts of advice. I also started getting emails from companies and started reading apps that gave me daily advice. There are so many choices to make when you are pregnant that it blows my mind. Doing it alone has it’s good and bad side. Yes, I don’t have a partner in this, but that also means I get to make all of my own decisions. I don’t have to fight anyone on anything. I don’t even have to accept a name I don’t like. On the other hand, I have to make a lot of decisions on my own. It is somewhat terrifying. I am now half way through this pregnancy and I figure I will share a couple things I find important.
First of all is the nursery. I’ve had friends ask what my theme will be and if they can help me design it. The truth is, I haven’t thought of a theme or setting up a nursery because I never imagined having one. Don’t get me wrong, I have a spare bedroom in my house that would make a wonderful nursery, but that won’t happen. I have spent too much time in third world countries seeing how the rest of the world lives to be ok with spending a large amount of money redecorating a room for a child who isn’t even going to appreciate it. I’d rather put that money into a college fund or towards designing a room for my toddler who will actually use it. To top it off, I wouldn’t want my child in a separate room from me. I had a friend tell me not to let my baby sleep in my room because I will never be able to get him out. The thing is that I don’t want my baby to leave my room for a while, so I don’t have a problem with that. When it is time, he will learn to sleep in his own room.
I worked with children in Kenya and I adored them. They grew up with nothing, appreciate everything, and are full of genuine happiness. Many of them live in one or two room houses or apartments. They share this small space with their parents and their siblings and often even their extended family. When I visited the house of one of my students the first time, I had an American perspective. I saw what they had materially and assumed they have nothing and assumed they must hate this life. However, my classroom was full of children with smiling faces and laughter. Not only were they kind, generous, and respectful, they enjoyed life and lived each day to the fullest. I want my child to have that joy and I am pretty sure he will not get it as a result of me buying everything Babies R Us tells me I must have. My child will be well fed, loved immensely, clothed, educated, and safe. I am pretty sure he will learn to forgive me for not having a nursery for him.