I was in the mall with the three kids. Hubs had taken the van in to have an oil change. The kids and I went and walked around Chapters and Toys R Us. Their favorite places to window shop. When we were done, Alex and Nick were ready for a snack, and I was ready for a coffee. It was about 930 in the morning. I hadn’t brought a snack, because I though Hubs would have been back to pick us up by this point. There isn’t much option in a mall for snacks for kids. So I went to a fast food joint. I got me a coffee and I got some hash browns for the kids and I. Not the healthiest, I’ll admit, but it’s called a treat for a reason. There was a woman, who I had never met before, who felt the need to let me know that she felt that what I was feeding my children was wrong. I started to explain to this woman why I was feeding my children what I was when I suddenly realized, she wasn’t even listening. She was judge, jury and prosecutor without the need for me to say a word. This. This is why. I am done.
Since I got pregnant with Alex just shy of four years ago I have spent so much time justifying my choices and trying desperately not to appear like a bad mom and to look as if I have it all together. I didn’t breastfeed BECAUSE….. My kitchen is a mess BECAUSE….. This is that BECAUSE….. So on and so forth. I was constantly explaining myself to everyone and constantly being judged regardless. And being judged on everything all the time…well… I said it didn’t bug me, but I have recently realized that it has.
You see, over the last few weeks I have been doing a lot of soul searching and a lot of figuring out me and what I want. Who I was 5 years ago and who I am today are very different. And while I know that in the last 5 years I have become a wife and a mom and therefore was destined to change, there were parts of me back then that I like better then the new version. Such as not caring what people think of me and not feeling like I needed to justify myself to anyone but me. (obviously, in a way I do need to justify myself to my husband, but I see that more as holding myself accountable to him. If I am going to do something big that we haven’t discussed, he deserves an explanation)
But, why I am always feeling the need to justify myself to people that I shouldn’t? Why do I feel the nosey old woman in the store deserves to know my intimate reasons for choosing not to breastfeed? Or why I had my kids close together? Or why my two year old still has a soother? Why do I think that explaining myself to these people will make them judge me less? It won’t. It doesn’t change how they think. They still think my way is wrong and feel the need to educate me on the ‘right’ way to do things.
So now. In addition to trying to look at things from a more positive light and not get caught up in the negatives, I am also going to stop explaining myself to those who are demanding an explanation they aren’t entitled to. Because I am done.
Love, hugs and more to come later