Well, it is official, we are having a little girl. Arabella Lorelei is still due July 22, 2014 and she is developing perfectly. The anatomy scan was amazing.The baby is only half a pound and yet we can observe the kidney function, watch the blood flowing through the umbilical cord and see baby open and close her mouth all while doing little flips and twists right there in my tummy. I understand that ultrasounds have been around for quite sometime, but the advances in technology have been vast and the certainty with which health care providers can give out information is astounding.
Arabella will be the first child in a long line of family births to not be baptized simply out of tradition. The topic hasn’t caused a stir as of now, though to be fair, we have yet to discuss it with those who will care. However, I am sure that once baby arrives the backlash will begin. No matter what we encounter from either side of the family, I assure you that the Couple of Atheists will not back down. I know that some people will say that we should not sacrifice the baby’s “soul” simply because we choose not to believe… or that because of our atheism the ceremony is meaningless and should be viewed as drops of water and words… with a chance at redemption of her soul should me and Rich turn out to be wrong. Well, that is fine for some, but I take a different view.
I believe that participating in this, or any inherently religious ceremony, is disrespectful to those who do believe. Unlike many relationships, there is no internal conflict between Rich and myself and therefore no reason to compromise our ethics simply to appease others. I also do not view this as keeping Arabella away from God, but more not forcing God onto her. If at any point she finds that a life of faith is right for her, that will be fine, but I will not pressure her into something that I do not find beneficial to life. Despite having one openly Atheist parent, I was baptized, confirmed and made my confirmation within the Catholic church… and though this did not instill a belief in Christ, it forced onto me the stigma of being Catholic… and I won’t do that to my child.
As I watch the development of the baby progress, I begin to think more of her future. I know that we are going to encounter many situations along the way where the faith of others will attempt to overstep and cross the bounds of our rights as parents. There will be compromise at times, but not to the point that our family forgets what we believe in. And if you really find fault in a secular, humanist household, well I encourage you to keep reading and prepare to change your mind.