A Case of Kefir.
Lifestyle. Good morning from chilly Vermont. Between the time I graduated from college in 1985 and the time I got married in 1996, I held and lived by this theory that I should eat healthy food 3/4 of the time and junk food 1/4 of the time, so if an apocalypse came and our healthy food sources disappeared, my body would still be able to tolerate whatever garbage was left to eat. (Remember: I have a good imagination.) This is how I justified eating locally sourced organic burgers with a Ring Ding topper. During this same time I eschewed secondhand clothing. Having been unblessed with my sisters’ hand-me-downs during my growing up years, I used part of my hard-earned money from my first post-college job to buy new suits, skirts, blouses, dresses, and fun athletic wear, just because I could. I continued to shy away from clutter, though books were my weakness. Books, music and clothes. I never thought about who was making my clothes and in what conditions, and I never thought about the toxins I put into my body with my 1/4 rule.
All that changed when I became pregnant with Serena and her twin, Nathaniel, who died in my first trimester. Wanting Serena to live and thrive, I spent hours researching the best ways to create a nontoxic environment–and that included my own body and what I put in it (although I had terrible cravings for cream horns), and I found my way to hand-me-downs thanks to my sister’s earlier delivery of my wonderful niece.
I planned to work part-time when Serena was born; my job at the Institute of Sustainable Communities fulfilled and challenged me. But when we met face to face for the first time, I couldn’t go back to work. I tried for two days, picking Serena up at day care sick to my stomach as I wondered what I missed in her young life. So, shocking our financial picture, I stayed home and embraced frugality. I have no regrets.
Sustainability. Minimalism. Simplicity. I grew into this lifestyle, and I continue to do my best to model and live it. Sometimes I make horrid decisions. Like buying a case of Kefir. But as I get older, I fit better into my belief system. Wisdom does come with age. So you won’t see much excess in my books. I just don’t know how to write about that anymore. Tell me about your lifestyle. Did you also grow into it?
Check back next week for another segment of Finding Home.