Part of the charm—and the challenge—of our family is that we really don’t let anyone tell us what we should or should not do. With children, we expect immediate obedience (often for their own safety) but allow them to ask “why?” later. They also attempt difficult things and daring feats that other kids might not because someone is always telling them that they shouldn’t. Jay and I have our own rebellious streak. Without it, we would never have made it this far. The unsolicited advice we receive includes things like how we should not have five children (far too many in this day and age), and how we should not sell our house in this market, but we should be building our careers and retirement savings and not gallivanting around the planet in a boat blowing those resources.
The same goes for advice on pregnancy. Everyone has an opinion about what is appropriate behavior for a woman in my “delicate condition.” Someone stopped me in Georgetown and said they were happy to see that my being pregnant didn’t stop me from cruising. He was just trying to be nice, so I refrained from using the comeback that came to mind—that I was glad that his being old didn’t stop him! Other activities I have been either stared at or scolded for include loading groceries into the dinghy, kayaking, hiking, snorkeling, riding my bike, sitting on a picnic table, moving a lawn chair and having half of a glass of wine.
Anyone who knows me knows there’s not much delicate about me. It doesn’t mean I don’t have limitations, or that I don’t occasionally pay for that can-do attitude. But I feel great. I have even been known to say that I like being pregnant. I can think of nothing better than this lifestyle for growing healthy babies: we eat almost everything from scratch, get plenty of sunshine and fresh air, exercise even when we’re not trying to, and generally pursue happiness and harmony. Some people just can’t handle it and feel the need to put a stop to such reckless joy. Good thing we know how to ignore good intentions.