I’ve been a crunchin’ on some confusion this week.
Confessions time, its pretty out there. This is my place to write & be open. So if you aren’t open minded, you may want to skip this one!
I’m a crunchy mama. I don’t deny it… I didn’t set out to be this women, it just kinda happened.
I try to live organic & green on a budget. Love cooking & baking from scratch when possible too.
Cloth diaper & wash those dipes ourselves!
I wear Silas a lot. More so as a newborn, but I often pack up the little man in the Ergo or sling for a walk, errands, or work around the house still.
Ok, so not too bad right?
But I’m a…
…non vaccinating, co-sleeping, breast feeding on demand mama.
Somehow these things just came about. I didn’t set out to rebel against the Medical Community on vaccines. I didn’t plan to co-sleep with my newborn, now 9month old son. I didn’t intended to breastfeed on demand ever hour or two for the next few years. IT JUST HAPPENED. I read, and researched, I asked questions, talked to those in these fields, I prayed about it, I talked with my guy about it.
Why are these things so risky to talk about in public? Aside from a very small circle of friends, I don’t really bring up these subjects. I have 3 mama friends whom I generally see eye to eye with on these topics. Once in a while someone may agree with me on one of these things (Vaccines, co sleeping & breast feeding). But generally, I feel like I’m “wrong”. I feel like I need to hide the fact that I adhere to these principals. Funny thing is, for much of history, children haven’t been vaccinated. They co-slept as a family and were exclusively breastfed until they were much older!
Now I’m not here to condemn those who vaccinate. To each their own completely. This is just what we have chosen for our family after much research, reading & prayer. I don’t look down on anyone for any decision they choose to make. To me, the “risks”, controversy & cons out way the pros by far for me on Vaccines. But I make this choice because I feel it to be in the best interest of my child. And I know that other mamas & papas out there are doing the same for their children. But why does our society look down on the un-vaccinated child? Why is it “not” ok to choose the “natural” way? I’m having a hard time with this. While I never want to push my ideals or thoughts on anyone else, I do SO want to encourage my friends to really read & make an educated decision! Nothing worse then hearing parents talk about how they have no idea how many shots their child received, or even what they got, at an appointment!
I don’t think I have really ever publicly announced I co-sleep or still do for the most part. I remember thinking, “Eww, what? Why? Gosh no…” But honestly, maybe it’s been my stage & circumstances in life right now. But I get such a great night sleep with co-sleeping. Hardly every waking up, or having to walk down the hall, Silas sleeps way better, etc… It’s been a great thing for us, and I will be sad when Silas sleeps thru the night in his own crib (a little tear, okay??!). The day is coming. And I’m sure in the next few months, Silas will be back in his crib for the majority of the night.
And lastly, breast feeding. Wow, those first few weeks, I was praying I could just jump to Silas’s 1st birthday and be done with it. But I really have come to love the time we spend together. It took me almost 8 months to get Silas on a predictable, good, daily schedule. Before his birth I’d planned on maybe taking 8 days. HA. Was I so wrong. But now we have a good rhythm. The boy eats like a cow, nursing more then the 3 hour system we are told is “normal”. Welp, I guess Silas isn’t normal, and I’m not confining him to a rigorous eating schedule. Sue me. He doesn’t sleep thru the night, or even close to it. How dare he right? Yeah, he’s a babe. So i don’t hold it against him that he would like to eat when he is hungry. Co-sleeping makes this super easy and bearable. I can function during the day & am a happy mama! So I don’t really see anything wrong with this life we have come to love. I’ll even put it out there… I’m planning to nurse my kid past his 1 year birthday. I’m fine with it and even welcome the idea. *gasp* I know.
I guess in all of this, as I have said before, there is a small circle, who really knows the kind of mama I am. But I am torn between sharing and hiding. While I don’t want to push any of my ideas of what is “best” onto any friends, what is the line TO share? Is it what is socially acceptable? What is too much to share? Do you wait until asked? What if they don’t know to even ask because they don’t know you do something? I’m struggling. I’m struggling being proud of the mama I am. Proud of the practices we hold to. Proud that I haven’t taken myself to seriously, and let this little guy teach me a thing or two. Proud I have come so far, learned so much and enjoy this new job more then I ever imagined possible. I want to share with those looking into natural living. I want to encourage friends to do with they think is best for their children, weather it’s what i have chosen or not! I want to encourage open discussion without judgement or fear. I want to continue to learn and grow and be a better mama , wife & friend.
How do YOU go about your lifestyle & sharing with others? Weather its parenting, or anything else! What and how do you like your friends to share with you? What is over the socially acceptable line? I want to hear your thoughts!