Posted By Kristabella on November 21, 2011
I’m a bit of a tree-hugger. I think this is one of the side effects of living in the state of California. And I was there almost six years.
I’m not sure when it happened. I mean, I grew up recycling, for the most part. We always separated trash and recycling, for as long as I can remember. I am thankful I had a mom who made us do it, or otherwise I probably never would have.
But my adult years have taken this to a new level. I recycle. I conserve. I take public transit. I use natural cleansers. I worry about my carbon footprint. I am green!
I came to this realization while my sister was living with me. See, for a 22 year old, she is not green. I realized this when I noticed many things in the trash that were recyclable. So I would then go through the trash and pull out anything that was recyclable. (Oh, yes. Yes I did.) (I mean, the girl uses more toilet paper than I’ve ever seen! That’s a lot of empty cardboard rolls!)
I had no shame in picking out empty rolls of toilet paper or empty plastic bottles of the trash and putting them in the recycling bin. My trash and recyclables are all in the same place anyway, so it isn’t like it’s more effort.
And then on Monday I went to the grocery store after work. And I didn’t have any of my reusable grocery bags in the car. I figured it wouldn’t be that big of a deal to use plastic this one time. It won’t kill the Earth. I re-use those bags to empty the catbox.
But as I approached the check out, I was overcome with this guilt about using plastic. It irritated me! Especially since I know that there were plenty of bags in my house!
So what did I do? I bought 2 new reusable bags at the checkout. And that was enough for my groceries, to show you just how little I bought.
I began to think of other things:
I use one of these at work and it hurts every time I have to buy a bottle of water. (I used to get hives when I went to visit Ali in Atlanta and there were so many bottles and they didn’t recycle!)
This is my lunch bag. Before I bought this, it was a reusable grocery bag.
I used to bring my lunch in Tupperware containers instead of plastic baggies.
Now I have reusable plastic baggies that I use for lunch.
I’ve tried to switch to mostly natural cleansers.
I feel like such a grown up! I know for a fact, 23 year old me did not care this much about conserving the planet. She just drank beer from the bottle and only worried about where the next beer was coming from, not how she was going to recycle said bottle. (In all honesty, I still probably think this way when I’m drinking.)
Do you notice any of these kinds of things that you do now that your younger self wouldn’t even think twice about?