Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Building Up and Tearing Down

It all started when someone I was speaking with started bragging about their "natural birth."  Now, what that person meant was that they had a pain-medication free vaginal delivery.  Good for her.  Does this not somehow imply, though, that those who opt for pain medications or those who have to have cesarean sections have had UN-natural births?  Why do we try to make ourselves sound like better mothers in such a ridiculous way?

That thought led me to another . . . .

Why do we brag about our children's development, something over which we have no control?  Oh, Suzy started crawling at 2 months and was running independently at 6 months?  Wow, Petey was potty trained in 2 days by the age of 8 months?  Oh, Johnnie was fluent in 4 languages by the time he was 9 months old?  Wow, Ariel had 10 teeth at 6 months old?

Well, good for Suzy, Petey, Johnnie and Ariel.

C'mon, people.  WHY are we bragging???  Did you somehow make your child's teeth come in?  Did you give your child motor skills crawl/walk/potty train "early?"

Don't get me wrong:  there are many things about every child that are impressive.  I know first-hand how exciting it is to see your child learn and grow.  (See my previous post on "firsts.")  However, you wanna know what's impressive to me?  Not how old your kid was when they first did whatever.  No, not at all.  What's impressive to me is if you've managed to raise a creative, obedient, loving child who cares about others, who takes his turn, who encourages other people.

Right now, my Nathan is 9 months old.  He is 21.5 lb, 28.5" long and has a giant head.  He has 8 teeth and army-crawls everywhere.  He rarely crawls "for real."  He loves to stand and pull himself up to standing on things.  He loves to be tickled.  He likes waving to people.  He loves to be held.  He hates it when I'm in the room and NOT holding him.  He is insanely stubborn and gets very moody when he's sleepy.  He rubs his eyes exactly like I do.  He is fearless and is a thrill-seeker.  Do I find all that to be impressive, especially considering his rough start in life?  Absolutely.  What's most impressive, though, is that he is a child of God and NO ONE loves him more than He does.

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