In one month my husband and I will be having our first child. I can’t begin to describe the whirlwind of emotions I’ve experienced over the past 9 months. There is part of you that is so excited to meet this new person but there is also a part of you that must let go of the old you. The old you that always put myself first, I didn’t have consider other people with my actions. I slept when I wanted, I drank when I wanted, and I ate what I wanted. Of course everything within reason but you had control over your life, I got up and traveled when I had the chance. All that changes when you’re pregnant, your body is not yours alone. You have to be considerate of this other precious life you are responsible for. Now that the pregnancy is almost complete I’m beginning to think beyond the physical responsibility and how to become a better person for my child.
I’ve always been semi-health conscious, making sure I have vegetables in every meal and eating 7 grain bread instead of white. Small adjustments to get extra fiber and lean protein to maintain a healthy diet, but I do have my weaknesses. My husband and I enjoy desserts and fast food on a regular basis. We are not avid sportsmen so maintaining a healthy weight is a struggle. Now that we are adding to our family I feel an overwhelming burden to be a good example for our child.
You are your child’s first exposure to the world, he looks to you for answers and watches how you respond to everything. It’s not enough to preach about being healthy, I recognize there must be a general shift to becoming healthier. That means I’m eating my fair share of healthy snacks, buying organic or straight from the farm. This also means being more active and setting an example that physical exercise is essential to a healthy body and mind so I’ve hired a personal trainer.
Politics have never been a great interest I’ve mine. It never seemed that the people representing my community ever made a difference. This year all of that changed. I sat and watched how racist rhetoric was being justified and how violence against black men was so prevalent. This was not the country I was so proud of or wanted my child to grow up in. I knew then that my vote in the primary and general election meant something and I needed to get out to vote and campaign. I was responsible for the world my child grows up in and I could not afford to be a bystander any longer. Having a child is making me a better person by making me pay attention to how we treat other countries and foreign people.
How to begin to introduce the concept of God into my child’s life? My husband and I have different views on the matter but I think it’s something that should not be glossed over. First I will tell my son God is all around us and a part of each one of us. I will introduce to him nightly prayers to open up the dialogue of being thankful and forgiving. Eventually I want him to make his own decision on what God means to him and how he should go about praising him. I will introduce it to him and make sure I am a constant representative of the good person I know God wants me to be. This is more than going to church; it’s about not gossiping or being overly negative. It’s also about being forgiving and understanding everyone is not as close to God and has their own burdens. I aim to show him how to be closer to God with his actions and with mine.
These are all ways that I am becoming a better person for the sake of my child; please feel free to share how your family has made you a better person.
- A the word changes Contributor.