Saturday, February 26, 2011

my niche

I am continually amused at the niche in which I seem to have found myself. Strange as it seems, I hadn't even really realized that it even was a niche, until I found myself squarely in it. It's not that I mind, not at all. But it does strike me as interesting.

The list goes something like this: homebirthing...homeschooling...real food fanatic...home cooking. I could go on, but for here and now I'll leave it at that.

I found my way to each of these areas independently, though obviously the real food and cooking are related. They weren't really interdependent, however. First, we made the decision to birth our babies in water...then, at home. A few years later, I discovered the traditional diet, and fell head over heels in love with it. I started out being more selective at the grocery store, but gradually I began making more and more items at home. Mayonnaise, nut butter, guessed it, bread.

A few months later, I found myself heading up our little homeschool. We were just trying it out for the rest of Ben's kindergarten year, you know. But of course it's turned into much more than I'd ever anticipated.

You see, I never could have envisioned my life looking like this. I never dreamed I would become a passionate supporter of natural childbirth...or starting eating butter and red meat with zero guilt...or be a homeschooling mama. And I never guessed that these things have a connection.

So you can imagine my surprise when I learned that a common stereotype of homeschoolering mothers is that they bake their own bread.

And then, when I joined a co-op, and got to know real life homeschoolers, I was amazed by how many of them had birthed their babies at home. Outside of the people I met at the waterbirth center, I'd never met anyone (in person) who had chosen homebirth. Not every homeschool mom I met was a homebirther, but I was amazed at how many of us there were.

My intention here isn't to reinforce stereotypes. But it's interesting to me that I've come, very unintentionally, to this place. I feel as though I've discovered the person I was meant to become all along. I've met countless like-minded women - such a joy, when I've spent so much of my life feeling as though I were standing on the outside, looking in.

You could say I've stumbled into a stereotype. You could say I have a subconscious drive to seek ways to be "different."

What would I say? I'd say I've found my niche.


steve and corrine said...

I think that your niche fits you quite well. Love you just the way you are!!

Mama said...

What a niche it is! Go girl!

paige said...

i love that... i wish i was quicker to find common ground with others in close proximity geographically... i find the family size question really excludes a lot of those with whom i have more in common... :)