Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Finding Your Tribe

... or when you realize you're weird.

  Six years and ten months ago we had one child.  And our family was complete.  We shopped for housewares at Ikea, bought groceries at Sobey's or wherever the almighty flyers told us to, and used Pampers and formula faithfully (not that there is anything wrong with that, obviously).  Our daughter was born in a hospital, delivered by an obstetrician, and the only farm association we had was that we enjoyed a nice drive 'out in the country' on the weekends where we would throw out half hearted desires to one day live there.

  Yesterday I went to my midwife appointment, where we discussed my desire to birth our fifth child at the house (I mean, the farm! Sorry, couldn't resist). We discussed our chickens, and she was so excited to hear about them (I've become accustomed to the glazed over look people tend to get when we mention that we may or may not have poultry in our backyard) and was eager to share her contact info for her 'milk and goat man', something I'd been looking for for the last year or so.  We discussed the local homeschooling groups, her other patients with larger than average families, my cloth diaper order that was coming in, and how long I planned to nurse.  While I was sitting in that cozy room with the late morning sun filtering in through the large front windows I was almost knocked over by the realization that I am absolutely not who I used to be. Or who I thought I was.

  I know we'd made family changes in recent years, we usually buy our furnishings and what nots by thrifting them from stores or auctions, we buy 90% of our family groceries at the local farmer's market, or directly from local farms where we know what went into our food, how it lived, and how it arrived on our plate, we're making the move to a farm where we plan to grow our own food, and were now entertaining plans of a homebirth.  But I hadn't really realized how far outside of mysef I had stepped.  I've always been the 'weird one' in the group, and usually have very little in common interest and moral wise with the people I encounter on a daily basis.  Usually people just find that I'm 'different' and are okay with that, but it always kind of troubled me that I didn't seem to fit in anywhere.  But sitting there and discussing homebirth and raw milk in the same paragraph with someone who would come to my house to deliver my child made me realize, these people are my tribe.  There are families out there who practice all the same parenting and lifestyle techniques we do, I just hadn't realized we were one of them! How do you not realize who you are?

  It's such a breath of fresh air to realize that you aren't alone after all,and you might be different, but you're not different from everyone, because after all,  you've just been looking in the wrong places. 


1 comment:

  1. Should you manage to find any other families in your new rural area that are close to you, you'll probably discover more of your tribe. Things change slowly, if at all, in the country, and the old ways (which are now the "new" and "green" ways) are still prevalent. Cloth diapering, home births, raw milk, breast feeding? Yup, it's all right here. In fact, you'd be different if you DIDN'T do that stuff. Well, maybe not the home birthing. That's still a tricky legal issue in New York.