Wednesday, August 26, 2009

I'm Back

So basically, what I've done is start a blog and then drop off the face of the earth for a couple weeks. Sorry about that! I just started working from home last week and I'm still getting used to it. It's quite an adjustment!

I actually have several things I want to write about, but none of them fit nicely into this post. So stay tuned. :-)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

May Frighten Small Children

Last week, I was given one of the strangest, most disturbing items I have ever received:

Yes. That is, indeed, a sad, crying clown statue with its hand on its butt. Holding its happy mask in the other hand. I won't even begin to speculate at the implications of this. It is just disturbing. It will be leaving my house very soon.

Friday, August 7, 2009

In Honor of World Breastfeeding Week...

Five Reasons I Love Breastfeeding!

1. It's easy, convenient, and free. No buying formula, no preparing bottles, no washing bottles. I can just feed Isaac whenever and wherever he's hungry. Easy peasy. (Although I totally understand the need for working moms to pump and use bottles; I think it's awesome to do whatever you can to give your baby the benefits of breastmilk!)

2. It's great for mother-baby bonding and attachment. I get a chance to slow down, relax, hold and snuggle with my baby when I nurse him. It's such an amazing feeling. <3

3. Breastmilk is seriously awesome. It changes based on your baby's needs (throughout the feeding, and also as they get older) and it boosts their immunity since babies don't come equipped with strong immune systems.

4. Breastfeeding burns calories. True story: I gained 28 pounds while I was pregnant with Isaac; he's now 8 1/2 months old and I've lost all those 28 pounds AND another 24 pounds besides that. Yes, folks, I've lost over 50 pounds (which I definitely needed to lose), mostly thanks to breastfeeding. :-)

5. Breastfeeding is nature's design. Breasts were made to nourish babies, and babies were designed to grow and thrive on their moms' milk. There's a reason, I think, that breastfeeding is amazingly simple, great for the mother-baby attachment, perfectly suited to each individual baby, and so good for the mother's health: it's not a fluke, it's God's design. :-)

Thursday, August 6, 2009

A Great-Grandmother's Perspective

We had lunch with my grandmother and great-grandmother today.

When I was pregnant with Isaac, as soon as my great-grandmother found out I was planning a homebirth, she was excited for me and would tell me every time she saw me about how she had all her babies at home. She was so encouraging, and kept telling me positive things even when my grandmother (her daughter) was sitting right there shaking her head and musing at how "brave" I was for not having my baby in the hospital. (As a sidenote, my grandmother made this comment again today, and I told her that after all the research I had done on hospital birth and homebirth, I think it would have taken more courage on my part to have had my baby in the hospital. It's true, too.)

Since Isaac has been born, every time I see my great-grandmother she talks about how wonderful breastfeeding is for the baby and the mom, and how it helps them bond. Today when I mentioned that Isaac sleeps in our bed, she told me that all her kids slept in her bed until they were weaned, and encouraged me not to be in a hurry to wean (I'm not in any hurry, but it was still nice to hear, especially when so many people look at me like I have three heads if I mention that we'll wean when Isaac is ready, and not at a set time).

It was truly encouraging and refreshing to talk with someone who is so supportive of the choices we've made, and to hear about her experiences with her own babies. It makes me laugh a little when people act as though homebirth, breastfeeding, and co-sleeping are these new, weird ideas, when in fact, these things have been the norm throughout much of history (rather than hospitals, formula, bottles, and cribs).

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Not Ordinary

I should probably get something out in the open before we get started on this blog. Some of you already know this, some probably have your suspicions, and others may not yet know me well enough to have noticed.

I'm a little... different.

There are things I do and believe in that wouldn't be considered normal by the mainstream's standards. I do these things not for the sake of being different, but because I deeply believe in them. I'll be writing about them plenty on this blog in the future, so I won't list them here.

Sometimes I get lonely. When you do things differently from the mainstream, it's easy to feel like people don't really understand you. In some cases, not only do people not understand, they may stare, talk about you behind your back, or even make hostile or derisive comments to your face. You may be written off as silly, rebellious, or eccentric.

This morning I read this on the Stuff Christians Like blog, and it encouraged me:

"...only ordinary things ever get full consensus from people. Doing something extraordinary should never make complete sense to everyone in your life. People will always support photocopies of what's always been done, but if you start something new, something different, you should expect resistance."

I needed that reminder. It's okay that not everyone gets me, because that's what happens when you don't do things the "ordinary" way. If everyone understood and agreed with me, chances are I would be doing the same old things that everyone else does. And I know, from looking at our broken world, that I don't want to be doing the same old things.

So here's to those of us who refuse to swim with the mainstream when we see that the mainstream is going in a direction we do not want to go. Here's to those of us who, in the face of resistance, hold on to what we believe. Let us not give in to the temptation to become prideful, or to think we are better than others because of the choices we make, or to judge others who don't agree with us. Let's keep doing what we believe in without judging and without fearing judgment. Let's remember that we don't want to merely be different, but to make a difference. We are not silly, rebellious, or eccentric. We are doing extraordinary things.

The Beginning

Welcome to our blog.

Clark and I have talked about starting a shared blog for a while now, to write about things that are important to us individually and as a family. Life, faith, marriage, parenting, community... it's all a journey. I hope to update frequently, so check back soon or add us to your reader. :)