Sustainability is about balancing the whole.
As you may have guessed from my screen name, being a Mom is a big part of my life. You might not see a whole lot of my kids on this blog, but they are always a big part of my life. To give you a little bit of background, my kids are 12.5 and 10, and are with me right around half the time. The rest of the time they are just a minute or two away at their dad's. We share joint custody, and while it hasn't always been great, I think we do a pretty good job of making it work.
Call me lazy, but any system that takes work off my plate is a good thing. The art of permaculture is creating systems that are natural so that the environment does the work for you. Obviously any man-made landscape isn't going to be exactly what it would be in the wild, but by grouping plants that are beneficial to one another, take care of each others pest control and nutrient needs, and keep each other from getting out of control it is much easier to manage. This concept goes beyond just the garden though, it is also a study of mindfulness in applying the principles to everyday life. I will try to present both sides of this coin.
While it is easy to fall into conversations about electricity, that is usually not the types of energy I like to talk about. Sustainability encompasses the whole person. For some this might be a discussion just focused on religion, but for energy sensitive people it is a gift that can be both a joy and a difficulty. There are different ways in which people use energy and sense energy, and this is an area that I am still exploring... so far, I seem to be a little bit of everything. The element I have identified with the longest is empathy, but it has become obvious lately that that is just the first vocabulary word I was blessed with.
Economy of Things
At various times in my life I have created adding around me with things, and some would have called me a hoarder. I don't believe this is something one ever completely gets rid of, much like an alcoholic is always recovering. In time I learned that I had certain priorities though, and some of those are not helped by overabundances of stuff cluttering our home. I have tried to make choices for my family that allow me to be home with my kids as much as possible, and also to give them as many opportunities as I can at the same time. In the course of doing so I have learned a few things about budgets, spending, income, priorities, needs, and wants... and the hidden demons lurking amid the well thought out plans that want to throw you off course.
Besides the energetic gifts, I have also been blessed with the gift of art. While I don't find as much time for this as I would like, I always seem to learn toward the creative in the way I do things. They say that creatives always do things in certain ways, are crazy and sporadic... and I guess I just don't agree. But maybe I should just quit listening to what "they" say. Reaching back into the land of high school, I took lots of drawing and painting type classes, photography, a couple of ceramics classes, and you can almost always find life in my work. I gravitate toward portraits, and want to show a persons energy and story in the way I put it on paper, or canvas, or whatever.
At various points in my life the circumstances surrounding my situation have been viewed in terms of lack, rather than of abundance. This tends to be bred by fear, and the best way I found to conquer such fears were by being prepared. As anxiety has ebbed and flowed I found that a lifestyle focused on abundance by forethought and an accurate understanding of needs was much preffered to the idea that at some point the needs wouldn't be provided for. This becomes an exercise in faith to trust that the Universe will provide, and by being proactive and doing what I can to learn and accept the opportunities I'm given as they come we get a little closer day by day.