Friday, August 28, 2009

Why the Unexpected Hippie

Before I had children I would have laughed my head off if you had told me that I would be a cloth diapering, extended breastfeeding, baby lead weaning, baby wearing, co-sleeping, selectively vaxing, all things earthy and as natural as possible momma.

Well when they say having a baby changes everything boy does it ever! It all started before we even knew I was pregnant, I looked at Chris and said 'I want chickens'. Chris' response "Huh?! Like for dinner?" 'No, like to raise for eggs and eating' He just assumed that I'd officially lost my mind. Well that desire hasn't left and we live in the suburbs so farm animals are a no-no; that desire hasn't left and in fact has gotten stronger (or worse depending on how you look at it). Over the course of my pregnancy in my desire to save money so that I could stay at home with our little one I discovered breastfeeding and cloth diapering. Everyone thought that I'd lost it then. Cloth diapers - 'you know you have to wash those right?' or 'we'll see how long that lasts' (12 months and going strong).

Ladybug was born and we just parented by instinct and breastfeeding gave way to co-sleeping and then to baby -wearing. It just made sense to us. We didn't like her to cry and felt no need to let her if we could help it. So we rock her to sleep, go to her when she cries and carry her around when she wants to be carried (which isn't very often anymore).

We knew that our goal would be to exclusively breastfeed for six months before starting solids - yes I said six months! As we approached that mark I began doing research into making our own baby food and discovered baby led weaning. What a genius concept. Just offer baby what we're eating and they feed themselves what they want. As long as they're six months old or older they are able to handle easily mushed food on there own, no jars or pureeing or spoon-feeding. Ladybug loves being in control of what she eats (from what we're having for dinner) and there's no stress about getting her to eat since she eats until she's full. It's a little slow going at first.

Well since she started eating 'real' food I started getting worried about what was in the food. So now I'm trying to move to organic foods and minimally processed foods. More work in the kitchen but so worth it in the long run. It tastes better and is better for us. My next goal is to have a garden next spring and summer as well as shopping at the local farmers markets for locally grown produce, I've even looked into using raw milk and plan on touring the farm in the next month or so.

As for Chris, he's been wonderfully supportive in my transition to 'hippie' and although he doesn't always agree with me he still loves me and respects my opinions (and calls me crazy behind my back).

Now I have an opinion on why this has happened to me. It's very simple - God's plan and design. I believe that while God is creating our babies inside us he is also creating the mother that he wants us to be. He gives us the instincts we need to care for and make decisions for our individual and unique child. What works for me may not work for you and may not work for any other child I may have, but He's given me the ability to 'know' what's right for this particular child. To provide the best possible for her. I know a lot of the things that I am doing on instinct create a lot of extra work but He has also given me the strength and support (both His and through those around me) to do it. Not only is He preparing me for things to come in my tasks as a Mom but He's enabling Ladybug to reach her fullest potential to grow into the person He has made her to be.

I love to share about all things 'hippie' so feel free to ask away!

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