Sunday, March 20, 2011

Progress Faster, Dang It!

I'm totally going to turn into a crotchety old woman one day. I might be one already!

I can't seem to control my exasperation and impatience with people who are not progressing in the way I feel they should. This is a crappy weakness and I'm tired of feeling this way. I wish I could just see everyone as the fantastic people they are and stop worrying about how their ignorance drives me crazy. I'm turning into one of those elitist snobs who feels the need/draw to point out others' flawed thinking, without making room for their own (lack of) experience. It causes me to withdraw, rather than seek out; it causes me to scowl a lot, too. I can't seem to have a normal conversation with anyone anymore, either, because I'm constantly wanting to tell people the things I've learned and hope they'll be as excited about it as I am.

My weakness to judge has caused Facebook threads I've had to delete, Blog posts I've refused to write, and friends I've begun to ignore. Family members have written blog posts defending their right for making their own decisions based on my judgmental "educating" comments.

I get it. I do. We are all broken, different, trying, working, praying, judging, hurting. I know. Everyone is progressing at a different pace and we don't know what anyone else is going through, nor can we claim to know what the Lord needs them to learn from any one of their millions of experiences. I mean, I go to Church too, you know.

Do you know why it's so hard for me, though? It's hard because my experience, although earned after years and years (which, ironically, is usually what will happen to all of those "uneducated" people I'm talking about if I will just give them their own years and years to have their own experiences), is REAL. It's not something I'm making up just to stick to "the man" or "the woman" or "you." Personally, I like to hear from people who have more experience than me on most things. But I have realized that most people don't want to. They don't want to hear from me. Especially if I actually know what I'm talking about.

[Ha! Example: lactation specialists told me to never give my first newborn a binky because of nipple confusion. Mother tells me to give baby a binky. I ignore Mother. 6 weeks after hellish nursing experiences, I finally give baby to Mother and Grandmothers, who give 6 week newborn a binky. Hell turns to Heaven. Bleeding/cracking/mastitis disappears --baby immediately sleeps 6 hours each night and nurses every three hours daily. Mother knew what she was talking about. I should have listened.]

Again, I get it. Most of it is in the delivery. It's all fine and dandy to talk about one's experience in a personal way, but it's another entirely to judge the whole world based on my own standard. It's the passion. If I'm too passionate about a subject, it turns people off immediately. They don't want passion. They want passing mediocrity disguised as humility. The more passionate (and knowledgeable, unfortunately) I am about a subject, the more likely I will be ignored. Or fought. Why? The delivery, man. I told you.

People say we should live by example. It's hard to live by example when the information you've learned could help someone NOW. For example, the things I've learned about childbirth could help a woman whether or not she decided to birth in a hospital, have pitocin or an epidural. But because of my passion, all a woman hears me say is: hospitals and epidurals are EVIL! They won't listen to anything else I have to say because they've already decided I'm an extremist psycho.

Another example: The way I eat. Did you know, dear reader, that I've been reading and researching so much in the last few months that I should have a degree in dietetics? No? Well, that's because I haven't written about it, yet. I've been figuring out what it is that makes the most sense and aligns with the Word of Wisdom the best, pondering my own family's needs, giving my husband time to finish school, and trying to survive. But, I've actually come to a conclusion! I think I know the answer! But have I blogged about it? Nope. I'm too afraid. I'm nervous because I'm too passionate about it. I will, no doubt, offend many, many people. Many people who are wiser than me, or scared of change, or think I'm insane.

So, I sit here, wondering where I became a vigilante for alternative thinking. When did I decide that the mainstream is really stupid? And how I can present myself to the mainstream without actually thinking they are stupid? I'm serious. Jesus disagreed with the mainstream, but He never thought they were stupid. Well, maybe He did, but He still loved them and didn't patronize them. He just taught them with love. And paid for all their stupidity with His life. And no, I'm not comparing myself to Christ. Sheesh!

Anyway. These are questions that plague me because I can't even browse Facebook anymore without becoming all passionate and crazy. "Oh, look, friends! Cheryl is back. Man, she's going to say something that will put me in my place and I'll get defensive and have to start an argument. Why does she think she's so smart, anyway? She's soooo annoying."

Dang. This might become a self-pity party. I should stop while I'm ahead. Or behind. Probably both. So, dear reader, if you find my presence lacking in the future (here, on FB, in person), I'm just warning you --it's totally me, not you. No, we're not breaking up, I'm just backing off before I end up destroying our relationship forever. I've got stuff to work on.

That is all.