Sunday, May 23, 2010

She's Growing So Fast

Little Miss Pre-K Graduate. 
Gracie, age 5

Saturday, May 22, 2010

"So, you must be one of those feminists, huh?"

Last night I ran into an old co-worker at the gas station where he was employed. He didn't recognize me at first, as it's been a few years since we worked together and I look a little different now. When I mentioned working with him at McDonald's he remembered my name and asked how I was doing.

"As you can tell, I haven't really moved up in life. How about you? What are you up to these days?" he asked me.

I told him that I'm a stay at home mom, to which he smiled and said that he thought that was really cool. Then I told him that I was about to start school again.

"Oh," he said, his smile dropping slightly, "so, you must be one of those feminists, huh? You think you have a voice, I bet."

I was a little confused. The last I'd heard, at least in this day and age, just because a woman is in school doesn't mean she's necessarily a feminist. Not to say that I'm not a feminist or that I'm against feminism - I just didn't see how it was related. I asked him to elaborate.

"Oh, I just think that women, especially mothers, belong in the home."

I was becoming aggravated, but I had people waiting for me in the car so I kept my cool.

"You know, I'd love to stay at home with my kids and be there for everything that happens, but I can't really afford to do that. And I can't afford to continue living paycheck to paycheck like I've done my entire life up to now, so I have to go to school. I want to provide my children and myself with a better life. Otherwise, I might work, you know, in a gas station."

I turned and left, leaving him in a state of silent confusion.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

My Inspiration

Welcome to the May Carnival of Natural Parenting: Role model

This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. This month our participants have waxed poetic about how their parenting has inspired others, or how others have inspired them. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.


It's carnival time again and this month I'm supposed to write about how I've inspired others to parent naturally. However, I'm not sure I've been much of an inspiration... More like a cheerleader to friends who have already decided to use various kinds of natural parenting. So rather than writing about what I've done to inspire others to follow in my footsteps, I'd like to write a few short letters of thanks to those who have inspired me.

To Natalie and Aliceann -
You two rock. Two of my best friends who both had babies within 6 months of mine and you both breastfed. Knowing that some of my closest friends were preceding me in that, especially that you were going to be continuing as I was beginning, was amazing. It really made me sit up and think about what a big choice it is to decide to breastfeed.

I'm so glad I did too! Kairi is 13 months old and still breastfeeding like a champ! I am now a breastfeeding advocate, attending La Leche League meetings in another town and working towards becoming a leader so some friends and I can start our own local group and help other women.

To Annie at PhD in Parenting -
I don't even know where to begin. One day not even a month after my daughter Kairi's birth, I StumbledUpon your Economics of Breastfeeding post. Before that I hadn't TRULY begun to see what I was doing for my daughter other than giving her what was natural. I read up more and more about breastfeeding after that, which further led me to become the lactivist I am today.

And then you exposed me to the Nestle Boycott. I had no idea what a terrible, horrible company they are and I am still learning more and more about them and their horrible morals.

To my March Mommies -
You all have been so great. It's such a great resource I have in you, that we all have babies the same age. It seems that most of us share a lot of the same principals and it's been great being able to lean on one another for support when needed.

Jessica and Nikki -
You girls exposed me to the wonderful world of fluff. My goodness. What an addiction. I told Jason that it would cost less to use cloth diapers and I find myself making excuses to by more each month. Haha!

Tori and Andrea, as well as the rest of the Birth Connections and La Leche League Ladies -
It's so great getting to know you all! I'm loving learning more and more about natural parenting and getting to attend structured groups where we can discuss different areas of parenting and childbirth and pregnancy.

Twitter friends and everyone else who has ever supported me -
What a great support network you've been! I don't know what I'd do without you. Someone is always there when I need it thanks to you!

And to those who have argued against me -
Thank you for forcing me to further research my points, only further validating my faith in them!

I hope I've not forgotten anyone. If I have, it's certainly not intended.


Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!

Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants: