December 17, 2011

The Crunchy Commune ~ By Zoie

This post, from Zoie of TouchstoneZ, was published on her blog in November.  It really spoke to me of the kind of life that mothers and fathers would create for their families if it was truly their choice.  Would you live in Zoie’s crunchy commune?

There is a need for like-minded families to come together and support one another in their gentle parenting choices. Families can use a safe space where they won’t be accused of acting judgmental because they do things out of the mainstream. A place where following evidence-based practices with full hearts and clear minds, is not scoffed at. They want to nurture families, not in isolation from the world, but in a safe haven when they step back into themselves at the end of the day.

The Crunchy Commune will be situated in a rural area with convenient access to both the beach and the mountains. It will be close enough to a city to enjoy its cultural opportunities, yet convenient to suburbs for the open spaces.

It will be easy for children, who so desire, to walk safely to local schools, including public colleges. There will also be spaces for the full spectrum of homeschooling methodologies.

Families practice forms of attachment parenting, conveniently known by whatever name each family prefers: positive parenting, positive discipline, gentle parenting, gentle discipline, consensual living, and so on.

There will be space for worship and space without worship because everyone can coexist when there is an understanding of respect and tolerance simply by virtue of your being a commune resident. Everyone will be free to choose to participate or learn from the many philosophies and spiritual practices available in the group of educated and diverse families.

The grounds will include extensive areas for organic vegetables, fruits, and grains. There will be a separate space for animals, for those who choose to humanely raise and consume them. All allergies, eating preferences, and diets will be honored and appreciated.

It goes without saying that everyone is welcome and accepted, without regard to abilities, beliefs, background, gender identification, orientations, or any other grouping that is arbitrarily chosen as a label by society. It is up to each individual to choose their identity, or to not choose. The group is accepting of all human beings.

Breastfeeding and babywearing are the norm. Bottle-feeding and strollers are not only tolerated, they are supported as another variation of parental choice. Milk sharing and wet nursing are readily available options, as is formula. Everyone already knows that simply by being a part of the crunchy commune, you are well educated and tolerant of other’s views. Sharing personal experiences is done without blame, shame or ostracizing.

Groups watch children together, allowing time for children and parents to interact with one another, knowing that they can come together and be apart safely.

Gender neutral parenting is encouraged as the norm; gender-specific parenting is also supported.

Daily exercise and mindfulness practices, such as meditation and yoga, will be available at any hour of the day.

There will be a library well-stocked with the latest in gentle parenting information. Free wifi is available for all the family bloggers and research hounds in residence.

There will be holistic health practitioners available: surgeons, obstetricians, midwifes, doulas, family doctors, pediatricians, therapists, chiropractors, massage therapist, acupuncturists, and so on. The health care providers work together to provide the best care for their clients. They believe in the validity of one another’s education and approach. They are tolerant of parental choices and work together to support the parent in making evidence-based choices.

The Crunchy Commune invites any who are exploring or are already well on the path to gentle parenting.

The Crunchy Commune will be a safe space for attached families to recharge their spirits with like-minded granolas. It is not a place for retreat from the world, but rather a place of softness to recover before returning to the world where parenting practices and negative stereotypes predominate.

And by request of Amanda from Mommies are Light, there will be a mobile fair-trade, shade grown, and all other humane choices, electric powered Coffee truck that makes the rounds without annoying music to all who need late night snacks.

Disclaimer: The Crunchy Commune is not a real place unless I create it. I’m creating this place of acceptance inside my heart for all the risks taken in stepping away from societal norms. I’m carving out a place to accept others who may seem intolerant. I take it with me wherever I go. Won’t you join me in the Crunchy Commune? You’re cordially invited…

Zoie is a greenie, yogini teacher mama to 3 boys on earth and 1 girl who soars. She waggles her fingers at TouchstoneZ and wiggles her toes near the San Francisco bay. You can also find her neglecting Facebook in favor of Twitter.

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