Wednesday, February 12, 2014

On Peer Independence, Part 1

Why is is that we read something written to encourage or edify us and end up feeling horrible about our own lives? Why is it that we sit down with our cup of coffee to chill and surf a few blogs and end up feeling like horrible mothers or wives or friends?

Case in point: I checked in to one of my favorite blogs yesterday, read her interesting post on homeopathic remedies, and ended up feeling as if I've been poisoning my children all these years because I take them to the pediatrician, feed them food that is not organic, respond to their tantrums with discipline rather than essential oils, and let them use Crest toothpaste bought off the shelf at Target.

The blogger is a really cool person. She lives on the other side of the country and is pretty much nothing like me. She raises chickens in her yard, delivers her babies in a bathtub, and probably does not vote the same way I do. Through the beauty - and I use that word tentatively - of social media, I've found her, and read bits and pieces of her life as she's chosen to share them, and actually think of her as a friend. Over the years since I found her blog, I have been encouraged by her countless times. Yesterday she was writing about something she's passionate about, something she's discovered as she's stumbled through life. Her commitment to feeding her family food that resembles tree bark has ignited a passion within her that she wants to share with whomever is interested.

I'm certain she never intended for me to feel an almost unbearable sense of guilt as I toasted four frozen waffles this morning, smeared on non-organic butter, and poured sugar-filled maple syrup (think Mrs. Butterworth, not trees in Vermont) all over them before sliding them across the table to the kids on plastic plates that are probably going to give us all cancer.

She isn't personally offended that I vaccinate my kids and give them Tylenol when they spike a fever.

She was simply writing a bit about something she's passionate about; judging from the comments, I think she helped a lot of likeminded people who needed some direction and encouragement.

This post is getting crazy long, and if you're still with me, I'm guessing you have other things to do with your day. Will you join me tomorrow?

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