Archive for the ‘Activism’ Category

You were drunk and sweaty, and reeked of cigarette smoke. You were wearing a red shirt and a medal. You were walking with a friend. It was late afternoon and the rain had stopped, the sun making the air sultry with humidity.

I was on my way to the store to run an errand after work.

I was wearing my baby in a carrier on my chest. I was watching the post-run competitors walking past me, each in their own happy group of friends, laughing and chatting about their day.

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The last couple years I’ve had really good luck. I’ve won contests, I’ve been in the “right place” at the “right time” and I’ve been very grateful for whatever good vibes the universe has been sending my way. Friends have asked me for my secret, but I really don’t have one other than to tell them I like to “pay it forward” and invest in future good karma.

Recently I participated in a contest hosted by a local salon, with the prize of a haircut. I shared the story of my worst haircut ever (I’m still waiting for my parents to email a copy of my school picture that year), and my wonderful friends jumped to the request to “like” my entry. My sad story won.

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Recently, the media has been paying a fair bit of attention to families practicing extended breastfeeding. Extended breastfeeding is a broad term that covers mothers and children who continue their breastfeeding relationships past the age of 1 year. Mothers who encourage and support nursing toddlers are frequently maligned in the press as curiosities, weirdos, or hippy nutcases.

I disagree. I think there are far more of us who practice this than anyone realizes — the fear of public shame often silencing discussion. I think we do ourselves a disservice by not sharing our experiences with other mothers, by discussing this topic in a much broader forum. How can extended breastfeeding be seen as anything other than “freaky” if we don’t normalize it by bringing it out in the open?

I don’t know very many people who set out when pregnant with the specific intention of nursing a toddler.

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I’m a believer in the power of enacting small changes to make a big difference, so Energizer Canada’s new initiative “Do Something Little, Help Something Big” really resonates with me. Energizer Canada is pledging $100,000 to Evergreen, and encouraging Canadians to pledge their own positive acts. We can all do our part to make the world a kinder, happier, healthier, and greener place to live, but that doesn’t have to mean huge sacrifices on our part. Little things add up to big change, and starting small is much better than not starting at all.

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