So here we are at week 2. So far so good except for the fact that I have to stop myself from starting the actual challenge part and elliminating things from our purchases etc. That part is tough!
Last night my five year old daughter was watching a program on Knowledge Network about garbage dumps and recycling. She was totally sucked in and extremely excited. She wanted to tell us all about what the kids in the program found in an 1984 dump. She recounted in detail at dinner that they found a 2 foot tall plastic Godzilla monster figure missing an arm and leg, a stuffy that was sooooooo cute with purple and pink fur and HUGE eyes and diapers that had hardly decomposed (I think she said decom-apart). LOL!
She could not believe that 1> anyone would chuck toys into a dump where they would be all alone in the dark smelly place and not give them to someone else to love and 2> that after all this time (relative in her mind since she has only been on our planet 5 years) that they still look cute and all cuddly! Well, not the diapers…the diapers made her feel terrible and she began asking about all her diapers and where they would be. Tough questions but key to getting our youth educated young. Diapers are a whole other can of worms for another post…
This started a great dialogue around the table that ended in Maxime wanting to participate in helping us with the Challenege weighing the garbage, recycling and helping with the compost. Very cool. So we took out the scale and away we went. She is small, 40lbs, so to see her straining to hold on to the blue bin with fierce determination and hugging the yellow mixed paper bag and picking up all the pieces that fell out when she dropped it when her arms gave out – so sweet and poignant.
This Challenge I realized is more than just the initial blush of showing change and getting in front of the media and community it is about teaching. Teaching the next generation how important it is to change now and to start that change with your kids now. Train and educate your children from day 1 and they will grow up with this change as an integral part of their mantra.
When our kids reach our age things like the Zero Waste Challenge will no longer be a pilot program optional for communities interested in ‘participating’. It will be way past that. It will be law. It will be the only way we can coninue forward.
So with this in mind, I see how key this challenge is not only to me and my community but to my children and their children.
Seeing the gleam in Maxime’s eyes as she spoke about the TV program brought a tear to my eye as well as a very real fear about her future here on Earth.
Cheers to Week 2!