I was cranky today.
I’m a sensitive soul. I have way too many feels. I want a lot of things to change in this world. I want to accomplish a lot and at the same time I want to hide away in my hole and see no one and do nothing. I want to wake up to the sunrise and fall asleep with the sunset. I want to sit in quiet, quiet silence and watch carrots grow and listen to dragonflies or waterfalls. Or waves in the Philippines and the wind through palm trees.
I realize how different I am.
I am a proud weirdo. A misfit. A black sheep.
I’ve been ever since I came to Canada when I was 4.
The things that get my heart going are when I get asked to speak to a group of students about not making garbage. My soul soars when I find someone who is living a nomadic lifestyle and then I yearn for the same. I get excited when I know someone has planted a garden and is giving food away for free. Or is living off the grid.
I’m weird because I cringe when a friend tells me that they just got accepted for a mortgage and that they will be buying a house. It’s not that I am not happy for them, but because I can see that they want it only because they think it will make them happier. And will make them feel successful. Because that is what society tells you is success.
But all I can see is how much debt it creates. And how unnecessary it is. And how unhappy people become. And how much stuff they try to buy into their lives to make up for their unhappiness.
But here is where I take a deep breath and let go. Let it all go.
My life is not their life.
My idea of success is not the same as most.
I must be accepting of everyone as they are and be non-judgemental of their choices.
Because I too once believed in having a fancy car like a Mercedes, a nice condo or house with a big backyard, a family of 4, vacations every year and everything I ever wanted to buy just be within reach. I too thought I needed to fit in, dress nice, look pretty. Get my hair done, nails did and have sexy heels on and have a colour coordinated walk in closet.
Yes. Really. I was all of that once too. In a previous lifetime.
But when I am sitting still, I remind myself that even though those things may look good on the outside, they will never make me happy. That’s why I’m here now. Because I was on that path to all of those things and I felt miserable.
Of course I do want a relationship that is secure and committed but I remind myself that I do have a family now, even if it is not what I imagined. What this space is giving me now is the room to work on making myself happy first. Working on making myself happy is making sure I am taking care of myself. And reminding myself that where I am now is actually where I wanted to be 5 years ago, with the added bonus of extra love from a beautiful, incredible wide-eyed, nature loving, toddler.
I remind myself that the things I want most in life are:
1) Zero debt. I have one credit card that I am still paying off but it is a few thousand dollars. Ok, like $6,000. But that’s pretty good considering that is all the debt I have. I promise you, I will not have anymore.
2) Time with my son. And while I work really, f’in hard to provide for him and I cry sometimes (ok a lot) wondering if I’m being a good parent or if he’ll have a good life and especially when I have to stress about finding a babysitter (like this weekend where he needs to be somewhere overnight for just under 24 hours at someone’s house who is not family that I need to pay) or whether or not I can even afford to put him in swimming lessons – through all of this stress – I remind myself I get to be home with him. Every day. I wake up to his face and we wake up slowly. Really slowly. And eat really good food every day. On rare days I have to rush off but 90% of the time I’m with him doing whatever we want.
He’ll be almost 4 soon and I get told: he’ll be starting school soon! It will give you a break, they tell me. Well, I have no clue yet if I want put him in school. And to add that to the list of the already weird things I choose, is putting me further outside the norm of society. I’m ok with that because there are beautiful families who homeschool their incredibly bright, happy children. Even on the road. Like Our Open Road, who inspire me all the time with their family of 4.
3) The flexibility to work where ever, whenever and accept work or decline it. No matter what that looks like. Be that here where I am in this city now, in an ecovillage, in my tiny home or in a van moving across the country to connect with everyone that has reached out to me on here. I’m being serious here. I started creating a map. With a timeline. Holler at me if you want me to come say hi. I promise you it will be within the next 3 years.
4) Inspire and help others.
5) Live within my means. Consume and own only the things I need.
When I look at this, I think ok, I’m good. I’m doing really good. Because aside from not being debt free yet, I’m living my dream.
And I know I’ve said all of this in previous blogs before, but I need to remind myself every now and then. I need to be responsible for my own happiness. And that means I need it written down for me to see in plain sight.
Because anyone who is different knows it is hard. It can be hard to look around you and have no one else that not only remotely looks like you (because honestly everyone I know doing anything like traveling in a van, living on a boat and making zero waste videos are all white people), eats like you, is zero waste like you but is also a single parent as well.
I just needed to remind myself today that this little zero waste, self-employed, veggie eating, black sheep with a gypsy heart and a homeschooler in the works, is doing alright.
20 thoughts on “The feels, ramblings and doing alright”
It sounds like all the responsibilities of your life as a single parent are weighing heavily on you at times. Just know that I really admire what you are doing and the strength and conviction it takes to swim against the (main)stream. Hang in there, we need more people like you.
Thank you! I appreciate this more than you could even imagine.
Mailyne – I am on the organizing committee of a climate change conference to be held Oct 1, 2016 in Augusta, GA. We’ll look at constructive changes that can be made at individual, household, and organizational levels. Right now we are organizing groups of students at different age levels and let them choose what kind of behavior(s) they’d like to change. We’ll ask them to measure the baseline behavior and track it over a period of 5 or 6 months, then report the end results at the conference. People do not have to be present to participate but can send in their results and we can read them at the conference. I can think of many zero-waste related activities – reducing or eliminating plastic water bottles, plastic packaging, buying bulk food, reducing trips made in cars, etc. If you are personally interested in participating or announcing this thru your network, I’d really like that. I can be reached at Anaber99 (at) aol (dot) com for more info.
I’ll be sending you an e-mail. This sounds really interesting. Thank you 🙂
Very nice post written from the heart…I also have many of your values in place regarding what is really important in life. To lie under a beautiful autumn maple in New England hearing the leaves rustle in the warm breeze and slowly letting go… 🙂
I love this. Thank you for making me smile 🙂
Articulate and beautifully written. I feel your pain and concern both for you and your child and while you are concerned about political, economical, social and technological issues which impact the environment you are also subconsciously implementing safeguards for you and your little one which can only lead to a positive outcome. All the Best. RB
Thank you for taking the time to send my positive and kind words. I appreciate it a lot. I hope you have a beautiful day.
I came across your blog today from Exploring Alternatives’ video about your Zero Waste life. I have already devoured every blog post you’ve written and have been further inspired to go Zero Waste. This post especially resonated with me as I also feel like my values and dreams do not always align with those around me. I just wanted to reach out and tell you that you are not alone, and that you are doing a GREAT service to the world by running this blog and sharing your life (including the hard parts). You have inspired me to make a list of what I really want in life, and my goals, a lot of which are very similar to yours. Keep being awesome to yourself and to your son! You are a big beautiful beam of light, and I appreciate what you do.
Abby – thank you for your kindness. I appreciate that you have taken the time to read my blogs and connect with me. Your words are truly appreciated. It makes me really happy to know that you are also on a similar journey and I wish you all the best on your path too.
hello- i found you via a video on youtube- which is NOT where i hang out, so it must be meant to be. 🙂 i found your story so inspiring! you have a beautiful family. i love that you share your feelings…it is not all rosey and happy all the time…and i, for one, am glad to know that someone else has to remind themselves of all this sometimes (i know i do!). just wanted to give my support on all of your black sheep-ness…i’m right there with you on so much…even homeschooling! just thought i’d say hello…and let you know that i’ll be following along! 🙂
Jane – thank you for taking the time to visit my site and I guess to YouTube for bringing you here to connect and share your kind words with me. It’s nice to hear from a fellow black sheep 🙂
I thinks what you are trying to do is awesome. I started being mindful about not taking plastic bags when shopping, but now I started thinking more about how I don’t like the amount of paper and packing material there is from groceries. So I am going to re-think how to do even better. Thank you for sharing your journey. It is inspirational.
Hi Angela, thank you for taking the time to write me and read my blog. It makes me happy to know that you had already put in an effort such as not using plastic bags – that’s so huge already even if such a small step. It can get overwhelming to look at all the packaging, but you are definitely on the right path, one little step at a time 🙂
I’m a weirdo too 🙂 Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I’m SO excited I found your blog!!! I’m from Windsor ontario!
YAY to meeting another weirdo!! Hello to you in Windsor 😀
I totally get you and feel the same way. Really emotional reading everything you wrote. I will say for what it’s worth, you are doing an awesome job and are an inspiration to a lot of people, myself included. And it made me really happy to have come across your video on youtube and now your blog ^__^ Keep it up girl, you friggin rock!
Asra – thank you for your kind words! My heart feels full reading this and it feels better knowing there are others who feel the same.
I can relate to some of the things you said in this latest posting. Along the way, there have been a few difficult times for me, but girl, determination is everything. Were you born in June or July? You seem like you are astrolocially a Cancer or maybe a Pisces. I am not sure I buy into astrology, but your sensitivity level reminds me too much of my own and I was born in July. When I was started reading this latest post, I was standing in line somewhere and I had to put it away and read it when I was alone because I found myself starting to weep as I read each line. Touching. Thank you.
Cheers and hello to a fellow sensitive Cancerian 🙂 Thanks for sharing with me a little of your heart too.