Children: A great moral challenge of our time



Wait, before I start on food let me start on the carbon footprint of a child. Holy landfill batman, it’s unreal.

1. Nappies. I gave reusable nappies a valiant go, however, the copious, liquid, high frequency nature of the faecal matter that is our lot made me throw my ecological values down the toilet and go disposable. I intend to atone for my environmental sins in future years by making my three children ride bikes (into adulthood) and not exhale too much.

2. Packaging. Anyone who has spent a Christmas or birthday morning with a child under 8 knows. Not only do you need an entire toolkit to get some of those suckers out of the boxes, you also need a trailer to haul away the packaging (oh, and shares in Duracell). I actually filled my wheelie bin on my son’s 3rd birthday. And a week later, all the stuff that broke, ran out, doesn’t work or had completely lost favour ends up in there too. It makes me ill. Last year I decided to give all the nieces and nephews plants for their birthdays. Can you even begin to imagine how that went down? My status as ‘cool aunt’ has slipped. I don’t think my polling figures can recover. But gosh, didn’t I feel good about myself?

3. The car. I was deadset against the Big Family Car. I was deadset against a car. I thought we could be like pioneers. YES! You CAN have kids and no car. But then I got a job 45 minutes drive away, or well over an hour on the train away. And driving was part of my job (but not reflected in my contract). Not only did we get a car, we only had it for a year before we changed it for a bigger one! The things we do for peace. Again, once my boys flee the nest, I will think of some noble way I can make up for this transgression.

4. OK food. If I gathered it all together, the stuff that gets thrown out, not only would I have a huge pile of stinking, rotten food, I could feed the world’s guinea pigs to boot! The title of this blog applies to the eating habits of my children perhaps more than any other thing. It used to drive me totally nuts and upset my sensibilities as a mother that I’d ever send my child to bed without having eaten a damn thing. But in the end I had to accept that there was nothing I could do about it and fighting would achieve absolutely nothing. There have been days (thankfully few of them) that my oldest has eaten nothing more than half a banana all day and every bit of lovingly prepared food has ended up on the floor, walls or in the bin. The twins are OK with food, but still love to throw it, mush it and do face masks with it. Anything other than eat it. It is a battle that I refuse to fight nowadays. If you don’t eat, OK, but don’t ask for ice cream. I love it that every second day they get a hot meal at day care and on those days I have no qualms about opening up a can of baked beans for dinner. Although this tends to balance itself out on point number one. Can’t win.

Thanks to my friend Bec for the LOL inducing FB chat tonight that insporied this blog. I’m going to have to state that the spelling error is just for you RH.


2 responses »

  1. Firstly, is it compulsory from now on to include a spelling mistake?

    You have just described Mrs gnu’s eating pattern only some days it is only a quarter of a banana. So don’t worrey too much as it is still happening with my 58 year old wife. Isn’t it heartening to know that you could have another 53 years of this in front of you 🙂

    See ya Sunday.

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