Thursday, May 26, 2011

The problem with sheep

Hello hello!

Yes, it's been a little while but i think i mentioned that my life has been a bit busy. 
But i'm alive and here and about to let off a little steam. 

So i've had many "people" out there complain about me sharing information about things i am passionate about or find interesting.  Most of the time it stems somehow around others not agreeing with my point of view.

And this is FINE.

I do not expect every human being in the world to agree with me.  It would be a very boring world if that became the case.  BUT i do expect people to do their own research.  I have a big issue with people who just follow blindly like sheep.  They may think they have all the information but they are just going with the flow and doing what they think everyone else is doing and what is best because that is just what the world does.  They become sheep.

Wanna know something i've noticed about sheep? (seeings as my family owns a herd)  They will be out grazing and everything is good.  Then one sheep gets ahead of the rest.  The sheep behind her think "WOAH, i must be missing out on something, i need to get ahead!"  So that sheep runs ahead.  Well, not to be outdone, the other sheep start trying to get ahead and before you know it the whole herd is in a full blown run up the dirt road headed to nowhere!

What does this have to do with the "people" you might ask?  Well, like i said, i feel many times people follow blindly.  They see someone doing something and they decide to do the same thing, or even try to one-up them without even knowing the reason why they are doing it in the first place.  (other than they *think* it is the right way to do things, only because they know NO other way)  Soon they are running full speed to no where and they have no idea why.

Life is a journey, and it should mean something!

Please do NOT be sheep!!

I feel in any part of your life, whether it be education, religion, health, parenting, etc etc, you should not just follow someone else, or take someone else's word.  Take a little time and do a little research (and researching both sides of a subject is always best to get the whole picture) and decide what is best for YOU. 

Do something because you actually feel is is the best thing in your life, not because you're trying to make a point.  People like that just make me think of the teenager who is rebelling against their parents just because they don't want to listen to their parents.  They don't even take into consideration that their parents may be more experienced in that certain subject and *might* just might know a better way.  All they think about is 'there is NO WAY i'm gonna listen to my parents' and off to nowhere they run (or off the cliff lol).   Sure, i rebelled against my parents but it doesnt' mean it was the smart thing to do!

I am constantly learning new things and changing my mind about things i thought i'd never do.  Before i had children i thought that we would have hospital births (natural of course), breastfeed for a year, have a nursery, use disposable diapers, let baby 'cry it out', circumcise, use a stroller and other things. 

Then my sister planted a seed in my mind that i am forever thankful for.  She mentioned things she was hoping to do with her future child.  When she first started to share them i literally though 'YOU ARE NUTS!! Your child is going to turn out so spoiled, you're putting their life in danger and i just can't believe you'd do this!!!'.  But instead of stopping at that thought i instead took things further.  I checked out some books from the library and started to do some reading on the "other side" of things.

I am forever thankful for those seeds my sister planted, and for the common sense i had to research things for *myself* because you know what?  I pretty much turned around 180 degrees in my views about parenting.  Sure, once i started parenting for myself i'd probably figure out how i thought i would do things was not really working for our family, but how long would that would have taken?  And how happy would i be during that time?  I am so thankful i learned about different ways to do things before!

I've had this same experience happen with many other parts of my life.  If my entire viewpoint in life can change about so many things when why can't yours?  Are you really sure you want to do things they way you think you want to do them?  Are you really sure you want to public school?  Are you really sure you'd never consider that religion?  Are you really sure you would never consider going green?

How can you know if you have never really seen the other side of the story?

So please, take some time and consider the choices in your life very carefully.  Go pick up a book and do a little reading.  Has someone mentioned something that you think is crazy?  Go look it up and do a bit of research and see how truly crazy it may not be.

Is there anything in your life that you have changed your mind about once you did your own research and learned more?


Hannah said...

NFP was the first thing that I researched (I had some moral and health reservations about the pill) and found out that most of what I had "heard" was totally wrong. I thought that it wasn't possible to know exactly when you ovulated because it varied month to month, and that natural methods were not significantly effective; those are both myths. It only took a tiny bit of research and then a few months of casually observing my own body to know that it made sense and was true. Then I took a home-study course on it and learned the details. In my experience, most people, including doctors, are hesitant to believe it works and will even make fun of you for using it. I got told "see you soon" by my doctor at my 6 week postpartum checkup when I told him I was using natural methods for family planning. Thanks, doc.

Learning NFP introduced me to the concept/benefits of nursing past 1 year of age.

After researching those two things I questioned more, even when I heard things from authorities like doctors, experienced adults, and teachers. I think it is possible to question with respect.

I've been having a hard time lately dealing with a friend's decision that I consider ignorant. I have to remember that I too sometimes make decisions based on the culture around me rather than what God tells me through his Word and what he has made evident his creation. I need to keep praying that God would point out to me the things that I am doing out of ignorance, wrong priorities, or having my heart in the wrong place, and what I should do to change.

Thanks for writing this, Jillyn. Sorry I didn't get a chance to talk much at the park, I'm going to try to come again one of these weeks.

Kitt Gibson said...

Sweetie, I love you for not being a sheep. You were the one who first planted the seed in my head about certain parenting issues and I am SO grateful for that!

I also feel like this is how people are a lot of the time about veganism. People want to scream and yell and tell me that my choices are "dangerous" and "ill-advised nonsense" without ever having done the research! My aunt is a nurse and seems to think that that gives her almighty authority over diet and issues thereof... let me tell you though, she has a lot of misinformation about veganism in particular. It really bums me out when people not only are sheep, but seem to be pleased with being sheep!

There are all kinds of reasons why people act like this, go with the crowd and all that, but to me, it's almost empowering. It's like, in the end, at least I know I can say, I went against the flow and I'm so PROUD of that. :)

Also, never EVER stop posting about things you're passionate about - they are so interesting and they never get old. If people don't want to read it, they can move on. But for those of us who love reading it, often we wouldn't see particular things if it weren't for you. :)

Keep on truckin'.

Jillyn said...

Hannah: Thank you for sharing your journey! I can understand you somewhat since i've been looking into NFP as well (just have not taken the plunge to read what i need to).
I fully agree with what you said here: "I think it is possible to question with respect."

And i'm sorry i had to leave the park to quickly, i had somewhere to be. Next time!!

Kitt: Well well said! Especially this point!! : "It really bums me out when people not only are sheep, but seem to be pleased with being sheep!"

I know SO many people in my life who are like this, and i just have to try to take a step back and breath and remind myself we are all in charge of our own lives.

And don't worry, i will never stop posting and sharing <3

Katie said...

I don't know why I didn't comment on this sooner, but I LOVE THIS POST! Jillyn, it is awesome!

I also credit you to opening my eyes to many of the alternatives out there, and am developing some VERY strong feelings about the way our society treats women (in general), but particularly pregnant women and childbirth and raising children. And as I learn more and more, I become more vocal. The word will spread this way.

The problem is that women are afraid of their own bodies. We are afraid of our fertility, we are afraid of pregnancy (it is, in fact, a "medical condition" for many), we are afraid of birthing children, and we are afraid of raising children without the newest gizmos out there. Our society has created an environment where mothers aren't the most important thing in a pregnancy, birth, or raising a child, but where a doctor and medical intervention, machines, and expensive toys are the most important things.


Women should be empowered, but this will happen little by little person by person, not in one fell swoop. Unfortunately, women are told everyday by people they LOVE AND TRUST that what they desire is not safe or is somehow wrong (something I have run into with my own mother when expressing my desire to have a home birth) which for many, would make them doubt their plans.

Let's keep thinking positively, ladies, and we'll change minds one at a time!

Jillyn said...

Katie, i am so happy when i hear that something i shared has led to further research and knowledge learned in someone, and especially when it is a dear friend i care about :)

Gaylynn said...

Well, when I was pregnant for the third time (after two miscarriages) and realized that I was going to finally stay pregnant, I had to figure out how I was going to handle labor and delivery. I decided that I needed to have some sense of control over that situation. I didn't have much to go on with my mother's experience, as those were the days when ether was used and father's were not allowed to be with the mother's as they labored. I made the decision that I needed to get enrolled into a Lamaze class with my husband, and that we needed to be a team working together to get our baby out as safely as possible, and with a minimum of pain. I say that tongue in cheek, for any woman that has delivered a child *naturally* knows that even the best of techniques will never block all of the pain. Anyway, long story short - because of our positive birth experience I went on to be a Lamaze instructor so I could help educate other women, and help them to know that they had a say in how their labor(s) turned out.