I often want to say, "I'm just doing the best I *can*", but usually the words get caught in my throat as a voice inside my head reminds me that, really, I could be doing better. Sometimes, that voice is joined by a chorus of outside speakers, but usually is just in my own fears.
I breastfeed, but... I babywear, but... I eat some organic, but... I homeschool, but... I raise and grow some of my own food, but... I know. You can relate, can't you? That voice that says, but I could be/should be... If I only... I know this is good, if only I had the time, the money, the whatever... To that voice, I wish, "I'm doing the best I can.", was good enough, but it isn't. That voice is riddled with guilt, shame, and worry.
The truth is, we could probably raise our animals on organic, grain and gmo free food. Probably even grow our own. All while making sure that anything we don't raise or grow is also organic, grain free and non-gmo. The reason we don't? As important as it is to me to "do my best" to eat well, I don't always care. Honestly. I just don't. I know I should but I don't. How could I not? Well to be honest, there are a few reasons. One would be that the bible does say not to worry about what I eat. (Maybe I'm taking that out of context, but hang with me) Even beyond that, it says not to worry about ANYTHING but to pray about EVERYTHING. I struggle enough with worrying, without adding more to that plate. Secondly, my priorities do not always align with using so much money/time on food. I know... I know... It will cost me more, in the long run, eating "garbage" foods than eating "real" food. The fact is, I'm going to die eventually anyway. Let's be real here. I could die right here, right now, as I type this. We don't know the day nor the way (usually) that we will venture out of this life. If I have to choose between living a completely organic, gmo free life with little to no money/time for other things I enjoy, well... I'm going to choose to split my finances/time differently. Am I bagging on people who do choose to utilize their time and funds this way, NO! Absolutely not. I really don't care what other people eat. It simply means that I won't always choose the best foods.
And it is true, I do babywear, when it works. But sometimes, it just doesn't. I'm only 5'1. Trying to do dishes, pick things up off the floor, etc... etc.. wasn't comfortable when I was pregnant and it isn't comfortable when I'm front slinging my baby, either. Does he cry when I don't? Yeah, he usually does, if he isn't sleeping and no one else is entertaining him. I know, crying is terrible for brain development, emotional development, etc... But it's ok, because I breastfeed and co-sleep, right? Really, I could be/should be doing better, because I can, but I won't. Sometimes, what is best for me, will not always be what is best for him, and sometimes I have to choose me.
It is also true that I homeschool and, often, try not to stress by comparing my kids to public school kids, or even other homeschool kids. (Although, I usually fail at not worrying about it, because I tend to worry about everything...Did I mention I'm trying to work on that?) My 5 year old doesn't care about his ABC's. My 8 year old is just now, sort of, kind of, starting to be interested in reading. My almost 3 year old, still doesn't say a whole lot. Thankfully, I have my girls. My girls, who now attend public school, have shown me that in all my "unschooliness" they are actually doing just as well, (in some cases better), in just about everything they are doing academically, as their completely public taught peers. This gives me both hope and understanding, that I may be right in trusting that my kids will learn what they need to to live the lives they feel called to live, even if they don't learn everything someone else thinks they should. Still, much more could be getting done with them.
The fact is, there is always going to be something more, something else, something better that I could be doing, and yet, I'm not. Not because I literally can't, but because I just don't. I have to come to terms with that and be ok with it, regardless of what I *think* others are thinking of me or how worried I *could* be about all the damage I'm doing with the choices I am making. No, I'm not doing the best I could be, but I'm not doing the worst either.