When I became pregnant with my oldest daughter, my life changed in many ways. I learned that everything that I ate, breathed, and put on my skin would be passed along to my precious unborn baby. And I realized that for years I had unknowingly been using products that contain known harmful ingredients. Boy did this open a whole can of worms. Enter: completely new lifestyle and lifelong quest to choose the most natural and healthy options over synthetic chemicals and toxins. Along with pregnancy, birth, and mothering young children, “green living” has been a huge interest of mine since late 2010.
Living green actually means a lot, to a lot of different people. I think the most general definition, for those that are not as familiar with the topic, would be: a conscious effort to minimize exposure of environmental toxins, seek holistic treatments, minimize direct impact on the environment, and an all around attempt to live a more self-sustainable life style with simple/nature based options. Its now been about 3 years since I have taken on this consciousness and I have found my endeavor to become “green/earth conscious” has been very rewarding. Knowing that I am not slowly poisoning myself or my family and the environment and not wasting money on toxic products has been an obvious benefit. But honestly, understanding that I am a being of nature that can greatly benefit from healing (or otherwise useful) things that come directly from nature has truly enlightened me as a human being. I feel more connected to the planet we live on, knowing that its more pure substances provide the highest amount of benefits for my body or even my environment. A big example of this is essential oils (which I will, no doubt, be expanding on in future blog posts). I know that by the merit of my own deeds, though seemingly insignificant, I am taking a small amount of action against a way of life that is damaging to humans and environment. I guess you could say that this is a way for my to fight the status quo in my own way, to hopefully help affect the change that we so desperately need as a civilization.
So how do I apply this to real-life? For me, this means many different things. To name a few: cloth diapering, having the hobby of reading the ingredients on just about everything, avoiding certain harmful ingredients, buying and eating organic wherever possible and feasible, doing as many do-it-yourself projects from home as possible, reusing anything and everything, choosing natural fibers in products over plastics and/or synthetics, pursuing a diet that is simple and plant based as much as possible, avoiding petroleum, avoiding the word “fragrance” on ANYthing, minimizing my general consumption of any given product, avoiding pharmaceuticals as much as possible, utilizing the therapeutic benefits of essential oils, and choosing nature and simplicity over what is usually accepted as the norm in today’s society.
As I continue to add to my site here, I will take specific aspects of my own personal “green living” approach and expand on them. I hope you will find that such a lifestyle is not as extreme as one might believe. It’s actually a very freeing thing to live more simply and naturally! My interest in this topic and gradual attempt to shift to a more earth conscious way of life has spilled over into other areas of my life as well. For example, I am beginning to evaluate the amount of waste my family produces makes me question what it is that I am consuming… and, do I really need it? Naturally I have become more minimalist in my approach in food consumption, pharmaceutical consumption, pest repellent, beauty regimens, and overall consumerism. And after all that, I just know I’m leaving some things out. What I ultimately mean to say is that the green living approach really begins to overflow into other areas of life and can become an actual mindset that is applicable to other things.
What’s fun about it is that it’s not just all or nothing! You can really pick and choose what is most feasible and makes most sense to you and utilize it the way you see fit. I am definitely not a perfect example of what it is to “be green” and I have a long way to go to be where I’d like to be with it (for example: I would like to make my own laundry detergent, quit buying and using plastic bags altogether, grow my own food, etc) I do, however, think that I can be a little bit helpful to those that are interested in it and maybe just don’t know where to begin, or to those who are in the game with me and just want to learn some new ways to reconnect with and respect this earth a little more. I am always down to learn some new things, so if you take the time to share your tips and secrets, I would love hear them!
I can’t wait to share my various approaches with you. What I’d like to do is title any post where I specifically expand on this aspect of my life is title it “Green Living: _______” to distinguish it from my other posts. You will definitely find me mention some of these things amongst my other reflections though! Hope you enjoy what I have to offer. Until next time…