Culture may be something we don’t consider, although due to it meshing with the daily life practices we do without much consciousness, it is integral to wellness during pregnancy and throughout parenting. It defines our approach and expectation of pregnancy, the care provider we opt for, the type of birth and setting we plan and eventually attend. Culture is the characteristic and attitude of our social group, our family and community, the foundation behind they ways and manners in which we behave. All of our norms have been taught since the moment we were born and mostly we follow them without doubting their source, the benefits, and sense that this is the right or best way.
Culture as learned programming of how we live and behave in our society forges us to be the people we are. There are practices that we will happily keep forever, others we may exercise our choice to change. Life moves along, what works in one era is not necessarily best or right for the next. Change is inevitable, and to live the life we want, we must be the change we want to see. This is a huge challenge for people in families defined by tradition and national culture. We see Culture most clearly by observing another’s life, the differences are obvious and may not seem the best to us. It is natural, to question what we do by observing others and gaining reassurance in ourselves, or to create change accordingly. Otherwise, what we see amongst our society is so normal that for many years we may accept it wholeheartedly after all, we only know what we know. The entire journey of parenting is ensconced in self-evolution, through reflection and adjustment of lifestyle practices.
Cultural practices are designed to bind people together, create unity, strengthen family and community ties through structure and be ready to welcome new life when a baby comes into the fold. As we become parents, we will start to question the practices and ways we want to raise and care for our baby and children as they grow. Becoming a parent crosses a boundary, parents in the making are already responsible for the holistic wellbeing of a new baby from conception until its adult independence. The culture we introduce them to and reinforce has its origin in language, routine, clothing, how we educate, our healthcare practices, food culture, socialization, housing, its literally everywhere.
We choose for our family culture from pregnancy, by either agreeing to keep or to change practices were acclimated into thus, pregnancy is a vital time for conscious preparation, discussions and considerations. Leaving important child raising decisions unaddressed has the capacity to disrupt relationships in ways not expected. Culture is intrinsically connected to robust communication and eventually to agreement.
Culture has rules and boundaries that you will meet in parenting groups, friendships through the friends your children meet, early childhood centers, schools, churches, local public places, and every form of retail. Each of these influences our cultural ways daily. Being true to yourself and how you want to be, in yourself and as a mother, will determine what groups you participate in, what food or cooking style you have, how you dress. You are culture, exotic and unique.