Every day I am pretty sure I do at least one thing wrong. Most days I do more. I used to think I was alone, until I talked to other parents who were honest. Here is a place for more parents to feel less alone, and more "good enough".

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

To each their own, to each their life, what brings one peace, brings another strife

So, I searched for a poem or quote about judgement, thinking there would be many. And surprisingly there really isn't. I found this poem, and I like it, I have ensured to copy and paste in completeness and with a link to it's author, as I have put this on my blog because I like the sentiment, and for others to go and read her work, not to try and plagiarise it. Please click on her name and read her other poems, and again let me repeat this poem is not by me, nor do I personally know the writer.

Who Are You To Judge Me?

by Ashley

Who are you to judge me,
Based on the way I look,
Do you always judge a story,
By the cover of the book?

Who are you to judge me,
By the way I dress and what I wear?
Who are you to judge me,
By the way I wear my hair?

Who are you to judge me,
By the things you imagine I do?
When you don't bother to figure out for sure,
What exactly is or isn't true...

That's my point,
You're no one at all,
You judge me for one reason,
So you can feel tall...

You judge me because you want to,
And because it makes you feel better inside,
Because my imperfections aren't yours,
But your flaws won't always hide...

I'm my own judge,
And you're your own too,
So judge yourself,
And the things that you do...

Because I'm tired of being judged,
By people who think they know me,
Who refuse to judge themselves,
Because they aren't as perfect as they could be... 

It makes me sad, as a parent, that I am almost shoved as an unwilling competitor into a world where one wrong move can mean you are scorned by others. Where mothers feel the need to justify whether they work or do not work, instead of simply being able to say "I am doing the best I can for my child and family at this moment in time", and being proud of that. Nobody can judge another person, nobody can say that they are wrong for working, that their children are being raised by others (what utter rubbish, I have worked in nurseries and can assure you I raised no children there apart from my own that came with me for a little while!). And when I studied and then worked, my children were definitely raised by me, they were cared for WELL by their child-carers, but they were raised by me. However, nobody can say either that children who have a parent staying at home do not then have a work ethic, also utter rubbish, I currently stay at home and my children know that when possible, people need a job to earn a living and pay taxes in to pay for the running of the country, and also to help people, and themselves if they need it in the future. I hope to raise my children, as do the majority of parents I assume, to be open-minded, honest, caring, understanding, non-judgemental and hard-working, however they choose to apply that to their individual circumstances in the future.

I just feel sad, that when there are so many positives that could bring people together, instead the negatives always come out to play. Did you breastfeed? How long for? What formula do you use? Do you use cloth nappies? What brand of disposables do you use? When did you wean? How did you wean? What pram do you use? What carrier do you use? Are you going back to work? Are you leaving your baby with a childminder? Are you putting your toddler in a private day nursery? Haven't you seen the news about *those* places? Are you staying at home? Don't you want your children to have the latest things or have a work ethic? When are you getting rid of dummies? What about their teeth? Are they allowed chocolate or sweets? When are you going to make them walk instead of being lazy in the pram? When did they learn to read? When did they walk? Do you have stair gates? Do you have a fireguard? She's run away to play on the grass, aren't you going to stop her? Aren't you going to let her run away to play on the grass?Are you sending them to nursery school? What do you mean, home education, is that not illegal? Why do you make them go to church? Why do you not make them go to church? Do you make yours do their homework? Do you do practise SATs? Are you going to get a maths tutor? Do they go to clubs, do they have *socialisation*?

I know my children. Parents know their children better than anybody else in the world. Just CHILL THE HECK OUT!!!

I like to chat with my friends, about how I've done things, and pass on advice if they ask. But that doesn't mean they have to follow it, or that I will scorn them if they don't. It's their choice, because their children are not mine, I don't live and breath them every day like they do, and I can not possibly know what is right for them. Heck, I struggle to know what is right for my own children half of the time. And in a world where parents are questioned at every turn, this is not something many will admit. It is time that us real mothers took the stand and said:

"Hey, do you know what? I do a bit of this, and a bit of that, and the stuff that doesn't work I lose and the stuff that does I keep. And sometimes it changes and I have to try the old stuff again, and find some new stuff. And sometimes I mess up and have to say sorry, I messed up. When I was a kid, I thought one day I would grow up, but now I've figured out that nobody ever does, we just spend our whole lives figuring stuff out, and it would be a whole lot easier if we were all honest with each other about that."

We should feel privileged that we are able to make these choices about how we bring up our children, or at least more of them are choices than they are for many other people in the world. I am not perfect, I am guilty of judging others too. I try not to, but am human and so fail. I am not ashamed to admit that. However, from now on, I am going to try harder. I am going to try the Complaint-Free approach to life, with a slight adaptation to fit my own life, cos, well, it's my life :P I am going to wear a hair band on my wrist, and everytime I judge somebody, or complain in a negative manner (I feel there are positive ways to complain, some matters do need bringing up, but can be done so in a positive *let's change this* kind of a way), I am going to swap it to the other wrist, and see how long it takes me to keep it on one wrist for a whole day. And then a week. And who knows what the future holds?????

I am sure I will fail many times, but it's not about the end result, it's about the journey.

No comments:

Post a Comment