Something that I do understand is that everyone cares. In some way, shape or form, everyone cares about someone or something. And a lot of people care about my daughter.
Something else I understand is that God gave me Gracie because for one reason or another we are the best for each other. I will learn from her. She will learn from me. I am meant to be her mom.
Another thing I understand is that I don't necessarily have the most experience with babies. I get that. This is why I did a LOT of research about certain baby-related things while I was pregnant. I was online all the time looking things up. Another thing I understand is that research and reading aren't quite the same as actual experience with children, but you can learn a whole lot from books. Seriously. A whole lot.
One thing that I don't understand is why others feel the need to constantly tell me I'm doing things wrong.
I am a smart, responsible woman with common sense. I love my child more than anything in the world. Except maybe chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream. That's a joke, people.
I know that 26 years ago when I was a baby I slept on my stomach. Yes, I lived. No, nothing is wrong with me. Other than that funny looking nose and the occasional need to interject people's stories and state some sort of "fun fact". But nothing serious. I also know that there was a lot higher rate of SIDS back then and there may have been other babies who had lived if only they had slept on their backs. I am not a crazy free-thinking young whippersnapper for choosing to have my baby sleep on her back. (This doesn't apply so much anymore, but when she was a newborn I would put her on her back and certain people would think I was crazy.)
I make all of Gracie's baby food. Well, unless we're going to a restaurant or something. Why in the world do people think this is crazy? Quite frankly, I think it's crazy to feed your infant sugary, salty, processed foods from the get-go of their life. Really starting your little one out healthy there, aren't you? Or how about choosing the ones that contain traces of arsenic? It almost makes me wonder how anyone who has access to this information could possibly give this food to their baby day in and day out. People say I'm crazy. Well, I guess I'm just a total loon for wanting to not give my baby poison before a year old. Nuts. Was I fed jarred baby foods? Yes. Am I ok? Sure. But maybe - JUST MAYBE - Gracie will be smarter than her mama. Maybe Gracie won't have weight issues like her mama. Maybe she'll live longer than I will.
Some are concerned because they think my baby will choke on what I feed her. First of all, I blend all of her food right now with very few exceptions. All of the "exceptions" are foods that are perfectly fine for babies to eat. Feeding a 10- *almost 11-month old things like Cheerios, Gerber Puffs, small (small) chunks of cheese, tiny pieces of bread... It's all ok. Feeding them a fair-sized hunk of steak is not. So when I am literally told that feeding my child spinach will cause her to choke I want to scream. Spinach (along with all of the other foods listed) is perfectly fine and normal for a baby to eat. I'm not handing her a string of frozen spinach and telling her to go at it. I use organic spinach, cook it, and blend it. (I don't always necessarily go organic, just here and there.)
I wonder why it is that I constantly am finding people sneaking her snacks and saying she's fine. Read the ingredients. Why would I want my baby eating diglycerides and carrageenan? I'm not saying she can NEVER have dessert, I'm just saying let's not feed her those things every single day before she's even able to walk. Ok?
Here's the deal: I've thought about my baby since I myself was a wee one. I've thought about how I want to raise her. I've dreamed of things we would do together. I get excited to do things for her. know I want to raise her to be smart, respectful, honest, quiet (with an opinion ;) ), loving, healthy, God-fearing... Why is that I make these decisions and choose that I want her to be honest, then I leave her with someone for a day, then find out someone has been feeding her foods that they KNOW I don't want her to have behind my back? Way to teach her honesty. Not to mention - way to make ME trust YOU. I really never want to leave my kid with you again if you're just going to go against my wishes behind my back.
Don't question me. Don't doubt me. Trust that I'm doing what's best.