Lessons from Oprah: You Know Better, You Do Better





I am addicted to Oprah, yeah! confession is good for the soul. When I heard her in an interview with Maya Angelou say that ‘you know better, you do better’, I had an aha! Moment- she has lots of this in her interviews-.

I know enough times we as mothers go with the notion that my mother did it and I turned out just fine. I have told myself that several times or even women from the slum and rural areas do it and their children are just fine, I have used that too a couple of times. The very first time I told myself that was when I discovered I was pregnant and I hated the taste of folic acid, as my friends explained graphically how it would affect my unborn child, I just told her, I know women in Kibera do not take folic acid supplements but their children are fine. However, I was so terrified of something happening to my unborn child but still hated taking those little tablets that made my mouth have the worst taste ever, that my diet was full of foods rich in folic.

As pregnancy proceeded I was given more supplements that I just shelved and took to diet, no wonder I added almost 30 kgs during my pregnancy.

With the Internet, wide knowledge and research, we know there are certain things that are ill advised but we often tackle them with, my mum did it and I turned our fine attitude. For example, we know sweets and candies affect teeth but we go ahead and let our couple of month olds have them, we had them anyway and our teeth are fine.

One of the widely researched foods is actually salt and most researchers show that babies do not need salt added to their food because the sodium will overwork the kidney. However, because our mothers did it and we turned out fine, we push on with the same ignorance yet we know better. I am sure if our parents knew they would have probably not used salt. We cannot use the ignorance of the past to justify mistakes of the present. We have better access to information than our parents did yet we want to stick to the old ways.

Not just salt, I know we all know milk is good for baby, doctors are researchers advice cow milk from 1 year but we compare ourselves with those who cannot afford formula and or our parents and say that we just turned out fine. As a parent, you should aim to give your child the best you can, why take chances with the health of your baby in the name of others do it or did it. You know better, you do better.

I boil drinking water in my house, enough times I have heard, you know children in the slums and shags drink water from the sewer and they are fine, my first thought, I am not in either of those places but also my child has enough dirt for where he is currently, I know there are people who would come to my house and wonder how comes my child has not been diagnosed with cholera. You know better you do better. It is easy to forgive lack of knowledge not ignorance.

This has made me wonder if we have become lazy parents, we want the easy way out when it comes to raising these little ones. No I am not saying re-invent the wheel when it comes to parenting, by all means if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. Whatever works let it work but if you are basing your argument on my parents did it our women in the slum and rural do it then, that is not reason valid enough.

Happy Parenting


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