"Never say never". It's a fairly common phrase. One of those clichés that became a cliché for a reason--because it's true. As I get older it seems I find myself cringing at memories of times I've said, "I will NEVER ________", because as it turns out--I've gone on to do many of those things. Most of the time, my hasty judgement was born of lack of education. I will be the first to admit that among my serious flaws is my judgemental nature. Why, oh why is it so hard to stop judging? Why do I feel the need to attach absolutes to things with phrases like, "never", or "always", or "I can't believe it"? Sitting here I can see just how stupid that sounds, and yet, give me a topic and I'm likely to have strong opinions about it, and most likely my inital response will be to think that other people's opinions on the matter are wrong. Or stupid. Or both. Putting that in writing makes me sound like the world's biggest brat. Yet I have to think that perhaps I'm not the only one. The good news is: I'm trying really hard to change my wicked ways, and employ more phrases like, "sometimes, and "on occasion", and "I can understand that". Here are just a few of the things I swore once upon a time I would NEVER do (and probably said that anyone who did was weird or crazy)
"I will NEVER have a natural birth": "Why would I sign up for
pain when I have the option to have a baby pain-free?" I would
sarcastically remark when I heard about people having babies the
old-fashioned way. I went into my first labor with one mantra: "Give me
the juice!" I'm pretty sure I also said things like, "They don't hand
out medals to people who did it naturally". What I totally disregarded
was the concept that birth can be a monumental experience in someone's
life, and they just might want to actually be an active participant in
bringing a child into the world. Another concept I totally missed was
that when we numb pain, we also numb our ability to feel joy. Nowadays I
look at birth in a whole new light. We have choices, and dozens of
reasons that factor into those choices. Those choices aren't wrong. They
are personal. And you won't find me trying to make someone feel bad for
any choice they make in that regard.
"I will NEVER buy a minivan": I remember distinctly saying to my
college roommate, "If I ever drive a minivan, just shoot me."
Thankfully she hasn't shown up on my doorstep to assasinate me, because
you know what I'm driving these days? A wicked awesome Toyota Sienna.
Prior to this sweet ride, the Malleycats rolled in a giant Suburban.
When things started to go downhill with the 'Burb, Seth suggested we
look into a minivan. I resisted. Oh how I resisted. "But it's just not
as cool" I would whine. What I didn't recognize was that I lost my
"cool" about 5 kids ago. You know what IS cool? Getting double the gas
mileage, having all the kids be able to get in and out of the car all by
themselves, and not hitting cars on either side of us with our
automatic sliding doors.
"I will NEVER do Crossfit": About a year and a half ago Seth joined Crossfit--a
very intense exercise program that I would describe as one part
workout, two parts torture. When he would tell me what the WOD (Workout
of the day) was, I would often say, "You are completely crazy. Why in
the world would you do that to yourself?" I told myself I could NEVER
do something like that. I was too weak, too out of shape, too chicken.
Five kids in 6 years has done quite a number on my body, and I've spent
years either being pregnant, or trying to lose baby weight only to get
pregnant again. I'm not hating on my body--it's done some incredible
things, namely producing 5 little humans. But suddenly I had the
thought, "What IF I did Crossfit?" And just like that, the seed was
planted. So about three weeks ago I started, and it is to date the
scariest thing I've ever done physically. I have fear, panic and a
little dread before every workout. But I am ALWAYS glad I did it, and
I'm so excited to get stronger. The only "never" I tell myself about
Crossfit now is that I may never not be sore again.
things I happily eat my words about: Homeschooling. Once upon a time I
thought people who homeschooled were weird, and their kids weirder.
Now I think they are not only the bravest people I know, but among the
most selfless and awesome and their kids are brilliant and fun and not a
single bit like the socially awkward kids I imagined came out of a life
outside the school system. I often toy with the idea my own self, so
don't be surprised if I add that to the list of things I said I'd never
do that I changed my tune about.
I can't wait to see what I
eat my words about next! How about you? What did you swear you'd never
do that you changed your tune about?