With Earth Day approaching, I have been feeling a little blue. Okay. Let’s be honest. Green and lonely. For over a decade I have been wearing the “green” and encouraging others to do the same. Pushing the envelope is what I do best to inspire others to follow suit. Remember, I was the one who started building an eco-friendly house in 2003. And trust me. Lots of the subcontractors and vendors thought I had a screw loose.
But despite my “can do” attitude, I often times feel that my green message either falls on deaf ears, annoys people or converts some. Yes, even now after the dawning of Al Gore.
Now, I will admit, I can get carried away and can spout off a gazillion ways to go green green without breathing, but blame it on passion. I love this little Planet. But yet, I still feel green and lonely. Maybe misunderstood too. Okay, perhaps a little judged? Some even think I am a kook. Do you feel the same?
Does this sound greenly familiar?
Why do I feel so green and lonely? Over the years, I have been in many situations where it is hard to watch how my community, school, or businesses I frequent have been less than kind to the Earth. Worse yet, your friends or families could be the worst offenders. I know I have tried to temper my passion with gentle persuasion like being green will save you money or “we only have one Earth” plea. Some people listen and others pretend that I am invisible. Sometimes, I don’t preach at all and just ask people to just respect my green wishes. Even then, I get mixed reactions.
So tell me. Can you relate to any of the following situations?
- You are the only one or two at a school PTA meeting/ or work meeting questioning why they are using bottle water or serving sugar laden sweets for a function?
- You question your school why they send home so much paper to get the proverbial answer, “school policy.”
- You wonder why the school supplies list looks like a trip to the plastic factory where every teacher requires a separate binder, folder, etc.
- You see cardboard on the side of the road or plastic bottles, and pick them up for recycling.
- Your company dumps enough paper in the trash to bin 1000 books.
- Your employer/school/relatives do not understand what it means to turn off a light, computer, or TV to save energy. “Why should they care,” they often reply.
- Your friend or family member does not recycle. When you try to explain why it is important, they give you a blank stare. And behind your back they murmur “treehugger.”
- Forget trying to green an event at school or work. People just think you are loony.
- Or you have asked specifically that certain non-green items not be given to your children, such as plastic toys or certain foods, but such requests are ignored. (Um, or bring disposable plastic into your home.)
Now, don’t get me wrong. I understand when people preach “I am better than you because I am so green,” it can be a real turn off. Yeah, we all know them. They are the ones that push their Prius cars instead of drive them.
But as I looked over my list above, it made me feel even more lonely and sometimes a little helpless. I questioned were all my efforts in vain? So, I decided to post two polls on Skinny Scoop, a great women site for sharing and comparing questions about parenting, products, and personal issues. First, I wanted to see if your families and friends were supportive or annoyed at your green efforts. Secondly, I was curious if other moms were annoyed or supportive of your green efforts. Please take the above polls. I can’t wait to see the outcomes.
The bottom line? I know there are other women (and men) who must feel the same way I do. And Mother Earth thanks them for sticking to their guns to make this a better world for our children. Just keep hanging in there. In fact, hang out with me on Green Talk so we can help change the world together.
Join the Conversation:
- Do you feel green and lonely? How come?
- Misunderstood and/or Judged? How so?
- How have you been successful in getting people to be more eco-conscious
- Have you given up and just resorted to living your own life as green as you want?
- Have had you been able to get family/friends to respect your green wishes when it comes to your children and home?