I've been thinking a lot about labels lately. I've described myself as "a little bit crunchy". A few months ago, I didn't even know what a "crunchy mum" was, I had to ask my friend. Apparently its those ones that have home births, breastfeed, co sleep, cloth nappying, babywearing, non vaxxing, you know - all those "hippy" types as my mother would say - at least that is a quick sum up of it.
However, in my musings over the past week - I'm really not "a little bit crunchy". On paper, yes, it appears this is the case. I basically had two homebirths. I breastfeed The Baby. I babywear - and own 3 different types of carriers. I haven't vaxxed my youngest. I co-sleep. I use cloth nappies.
If ever I was asked why I do these things - my answers certainly wouldn't match up to the normal "crunchy" type. I had 2 previous c-sections, one purely because I didn't want to ever go through labour. I have formula fed the 3 other children, its only the 4th one that its been successful with. I wear The Baby because she won't let me put her down to sleep during the day, and I have 3 other children to take care of. We haven't vaxxed The Baby because we haven't finished our research as to whether we want to or not. We vaxxed the first two, and delayed with Speedy. We co-sleep because Sparrow and Speedy creep in overnight at some ridiculous hour, and The Baby wakes up if we move her once asleep. So I keep her next to me. Cloth nappies? Disposables are expensive when you have 3 in nappies. Plus, it is less landfill and they are pretty cute.
So I'm changing my "label". I'm not "a little bit crunchy". For me, my new label will be "Whatever Works". All those things work for me. I'm a normal mum, doing Whatever Works for me. For my family. For our family happiness.
I hope people look past "labels" and see that every mother out there is doing whatever works for them, regardless of whether or not it would personally work for you. More acceptance and less judgement is pretty much all we are asking for. Actually, no - its what we deserve. Sometimes its worth pushing past those labels and getting to know the person underneath - because they could turn out to be a pretty awesome friend.