Monday, March 6, 2017

Why I Became a Crazy Crunchy Mom

There are lots of articles out there about things crunchy moms do, like cloth diaper, eat organic, and buy only sustainable clothing. I've written some of these articles myself.

But I've never seen anyone write about why they decided to become crunchy.

Now, I'm not one for labels. In the sense of degradation or shame, I mean. I'm all for labels for, well, labeling stuff. Calling an apple and apple. I am a crunchy mom. I like being a crunchy mom. I'm not trying to call anyone else a crunchy mom, or make you feel bad for not being a crunchy mom. I am who I am because I made these choices and I like them. I assume the same for you. Let's just get that out of the way, shall we?

First off, a "crunchy mom" is a mom who likes more natural products and more natural parenting. Think elderberry syrup instead of antibiotics, cloth diapers instead of plastic, and babywearing. Lots of babywearing.

I didn't know I was going to be a crunchy mom.

Really, I didn't. I didn't know what kind of mom I was. I was only afraid at first. Reuben was so tiny, I was so...tired. That sums up the first few months.

But every mom has to make decisions, and my decisions have all been crunchy. Except for my laundry detergent; that is not crunchy. We use Tide Free and Gentle. I wash poop, people. In my washing machine. I need a strong detergent.

Every parent makes decisions. I think as long as you love your child and are making well informed decisions that you are a good parent. As in, try. Don't guess. Be deliberate about it. Your child is worth researching all decisions that impact them. In matters where it might be gray (most matters, honestly) at least make an educated guess. Obviously, my parenting won't look like yours because I am not you. I also am not parenting your child. I don't have to understand your parenting decisions either, because we are different, but I can respect them even if I'm confused. At least, that is what I think. I don't get why people are mad because I don't understand why they do a certain thing to their child. Um, explain it to me. Or tell me to mind my own business. But I'm entitled to my opinion and you to yours.

I don't go around telling people what I think of their choices usually, but sometimes it comes up when, they, you know, ask me. Don't ask if you don't want to honestly hear why I don't understand that you feed your child sugar. Because I won't understand.

I think a lot of moms go into this thinking many things are black and white, when really nothing is. We all make mistakes, we all fail. We don't need other people to validate our opinions either. Many moms want this, and that is why they get their proverbial panties in a wad when people have the audacity to do things differently.

If there was one thing I could tell moms, it would be that: you don't need other people to validate your opinions or choices. Make them, and then OWN the crap out of them because you know your child and you are his/her mother. But research first, of course. You get the drift.

But back to why I'm a crunchy mom.

It really has to do with choice, with my background and experiences, and my research. That's it. I choose to be one because I feel like it is the best choice for my family, and because my research and experiences have led me here.

I'm not a crunchy mom because I think eating non-organic carrots is sinful and should be punishable by stoning.

I'm not a crunchy mom because I think drinking pasteurized milk is horrific and you deserve to be smeared on twitter.

I'm not a crunchy mom because I think putting a disposable diaper on a child should be met with the evil eye of wasteful doom. Or that every time you do it you need to hear a lecture about landfills. No parent deserves to be lectured, and least of all about landfills. That we all use. And are grateful for.

I'm not a crunchy mom because I think if you feed your child day old pizza from a chain store on plastic plate is synonymous with child abuse. Because pizza equals hitting your child? Clearly not.

I am crunchy mom because I made the choice for my family. I enjoy what I do and I feel my family benefits from it. Sure, I believe cloth diapers are more sustainable for the environment, but that doesn't mean disposable diaper users have to feel guilty for making a different choice. I made a choice that was best for my family, and I own it. I love it, and I celebrate the freedom to continue making that choice, as should you.

And that is why I became a crazy crunchy mom.

(My husband said I became one just to annoy him) (hahaha husband) (he didn't mean it, he loves me)