I get a lot of compliments on my daughter’s diaper bag. It’s black and white with these really big funky circles on it, and on the side, embroidered in a whimsical purple font are the words

CRUNCHY MAMA.

People often ask me what that means, having never heard the term before. I am always happy to tell them, after all it is a big part of who I am as a mother and the person I am growing into as I get older.

For me being a crunchy mama means doing my research before I just go with the status- quo. That pertains to everything from what we put in our mouths to what we listen to on the radio. It means being conscious of the repercussions of the decisions I make, in my child’s life, and in the world at large.

Being crunchy means that instead of buying disposable diapers, which although easier and definitely more absorbent, I invested in cloth which is more cost effective and easier on my baby’s skin.

It means that for the first four months of my daughter’s life I co-slept with her, in the bed right beside me, despite many well meaning friends and family members warnings that she could suffocate and die in the crook of my arm.

It means I don’t vaccinate my child because the hundreds of hours of research I have done has told me that the harm those shots can do is far worse than the harm that COULD happen should she get an STD at the tender age of 3 months…

Being crunchy means that I fought tooth and nail to nurse my daughter until the last possible moment when I was no longer able to, because to ME that was the best I was able to provide for her….I could go on but you get the idea.:)

The more I try to assimilate into the crunchy culture around here, the more I realize it is a losing battle for me..Why you ask? Because somewhere along the lines, Crunchy became synonymous with exclusive, that is: either you are.. or you aren’t.

And this frankly pisses me off…

Apparantly unless you agree to all 745 tennants of the “crunchy mom’s handbook”, then you might as well feed your kid draino. So what if you breastfeed, baby wear, and cloth diaper? You plan on circumcising? Out of the clubhouse… Don’t believe in EC? (that’s when you hold your kid over the toilet until they pee or poop..) We don’t want you here.

It’s ridiculous. I actually left one group a few months ago because they were speaking so awfully about folks who choose to circumcise. Being that I was due with a girl it was kind of a moot point, but even still I offered my two cents (bad idea) stating that some people are bound by religion to practice such a rite.. for example.. Jews like… well me?

The answer came as bluntly as the original sentiment:

It’s not up to the parent to choose. It is the child’s choice and anything else is BARBARIC…

Yeah.. they called me barbaric!!

Needless to say I left that page in a jiff. There are no shortage of pages to join for like minded mommies…

So long as you don’t formula feed…

and have the most innovative (read: expensive) baby harness/sling/apparatus….

It’s downright obnoxious!

I wonder how many “kind of” like minded mamas like me have been alienated in just this way.. Imagine how much more effective these “support groups” would be if they weren’t so quick to look down their noses at people…..

The same groups who wonder why they can’t get the attendance up at their meetings or why the same old people show up to all their events…

So I find myself kind of stuck in the middle.. Not quite vanilla but not “crunchy enough for the cool kids” either… I still have my group of friends.. some crunchy, like me and some as mainstream as they come..

I am not mainstream, and I guess I am not cool enough to be crunchy.. I guess I am just me..

Come to think of it, that is who I was all along wasn’t I? I wonder how many Me’s there are out there?

I assure you, you aren’t alone:)

<3NSMM

P.S  Here is a link to a new group I created on FB just for folks like us!

https://www.facebook.com/groups/579887695385244/579890228718324/?notif_t=like

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