Did you hear the news this week? It is quite literally raining plastic. We are breathing and eating mircroplastics and no one quite knows what the impact potential for our health or environment will be. This is really scary stuff, however, what is just as alarming is how numb we seem to be about it, myself included.
Starting Basal Baby started a personal awakening. Learning things I never knew about the effects of microplastics, synthetic fibers, and apparel manufacturing processes has lead to asking more questions, which leads to more information seeking, which leads to shock, alarm, and anger. It feels like that moment you realize you've been manipulated, because it is. We've been conditioned to not notice, to accept and consume. So yeah, anger. But then still the question remains.. now what?
My gut feeling is that we need to understand how BIG the problem is, to really feel its enormity, its pervasiveness, to see how finely intertwined and important we all are to this problem's existence before we can begin to tap into an urgency to change and solve it en masse.
So there it is, my personal first step - noticing. Let's call it out. Let's see the problem for what it is and then let the awareness make us uncomfortable. I've started to do this with plastic and you guys, it's effing crazy. Just in a single trip to the grocery story for our little four person family the amount of plastic in the cart is dizzying. The cheese sticks individually wrapped in plastic and then packed again in plastic is just one of many examples that come to mind. Not to mention individually plastic wrapped cucumbers....
Rant I shall, but one thing I do not claim to have right now are any answers. I am also not here to cast shame, however, don't be surprised if you feel it after you start to "notice." You aren't alone, but listen.... we've been manipulated into believing this is all okay. It's going to take time to shake it all off and come to terms with what the current state of consumption is. I believe it is a process, and likely a long and uncomfortable one. I'm just a single human, who is beginning a journey of noticing, who is now uncomfortable and questioning choices.
My greatest hope is that perhaps together we can start talking about things that are insanely common, yet totally ridiculous, and perhaps begin to brainstorm some solutions that (a) don't send us back to the dark ages and (b) don't further drift us toward environmental apocalypse.
My natural instinct has always been to create something to help others on a similar journey. So here I stand, an average American parent, who realistically can't change everything about their life overnight, asking you - how do we start to take manageable steps toward sustainable changes? What sort of resources, information, things, tech would help you to more easily make better buying choices that still support your lifestyle?