Monday, 4th of April, 2016
I was not joking the other day when I said I had been using Truthpaste. Truthpaste is a real thing, and while I was talking about it in a metaphorical sense, to imply complete and utter honesty, it is a product that you can actually use to clean your teeth with. I am a firm believer that honest to good intentions, lead to honest to good living, so I try to always support companies that have new age integrity. Truth is a funny thing though, you can still be telling the truth, even if you leave some bits out, which is why of course, we have the oath “Do you solemnly swear to tell the whole truth, nothing but the truth, so help you god?”
Ok, so my hand is raised, and I have recited the oath.
Maya arrived home from a birthday slumber party and I could feel her tiredness. Not overly tired, but just enough that it was notably different to her normal energy levels. I was excited to hear how the birthday celebrations were, and if it had been as fun as she had anticipated? The slumber party was with a group of friends Maya had made when she briefly studied dance. Her friendships with these girls has been partly romanticized because she rarely sees them, and so when she does, it is super important to her. I know the high degree she holds gatherings with her dance friends and so I always hope she is not disappointed by banality. After a quick conversation I could tell the party had been fine and she had an adequate amount of fun. As she sat at the kitchen bench sipping peppermint tea, I started asking her questions to fill in the details of the outing. “What did you have for dinner?” I asked. “They ordered a pizza, but I ate only one piece so I did not feel sick.” Maya said. I nodded my head, knowing that Maya does not like a tummy full of cheese pizza. “What did you have for breakfast?” I inquired next, wondering what I should make her for lunch. I am very aware of balancing my children’s diet, so I was specifically asking this, so I knew what her body might need next. “This muffin,” Maya said picking up the cake wrapped in cling wrap that was sitting in front of her. It was partly nibbled on like a mouse had eaten from it, “but I didn’t eat much.” She added. Now, I am very quick to summarize a situation. “You had a bought pizza for dinner and a bought muffin for breakfast. Did you have any fruit or vegetables?” Maya shook her head no. “Jessica didn’t make you breakfast? there was no cut up fruit?” I questioned again, just to make sure. Maya shook her head no again. Now I was not making gender assumptions that the mother should have made breakfast, but you see, this mother wrote a children’s cookbook so I was under the impression cooking food was important to her. “When we got up Jessica wasn’t there,” Maya said. “She had gone to Starbucks.” I am pretty sure I got a pursed lip look on my face. “Starbucks” I said, like it was my nemesis. Then Maya, knowing me well, put a little more fuel on my fire. “And they use blue toothpaste, it was fluro blue and it looked toxic.” I wanted to have a little frustration fit, and it took all my might to remain composed. Now, I have to quickly stop and talk about judgement, because, while judgement can be a sinister thing, using good judgement can be very important for living a long life. You can dislike what your friends choose to do, and still love them. This will involve using your judgement for your own well being, in a positive way. Maya adores this friend, blue toothpaste or not. When a strong judgement arises in you, it is an opportunity to get to know yourself, the imporant thing is to just have love and respect.
Theses things can really get under my skin though, and it seems I was getting a lesson about just how important food is for me. The next moment I was lifting things up chaotically and looking about the benches and table top, saying “Where is my phone?” Maya knew instantly I as on that edge I like to stand on, of land and earth, or sanity and madness. “Mum, what are you doing?” Maya’s tone was very stern. “Well, I have to say something about that to Jessica!” I said while trying to find my phone. “I have to text to her and ask her why she did not feed you healthy meals with fruit and vegetables?” There must be a look I get in my eyes. I start burning for the cause. For all the children who are getting their stomachs filled with franchise cheese pizza and white flour cake muffins. I really kindling my own flame, and this isn’t about being elitist, this is about a basic human right for all children to have good healthy food. “Mum, don’t you dare text her!” Maya said with all her strength of character. I knew deep down that it would be mortifying for Maya if I were to text my concerns to her friend’s mother and so I put down my telephone. “Ok, I promise I won’t text. But next time we bump into them I am going to say something.” I said, imagining how artfully I would address the importance of healthy wholesome home cooked food. “Mum!” Maya shrieked at me. I was just being silly, but I was finding it very hard to let go of the fact that I had entrusted this family to feed my child well. I felt let down by community. I would have been happier if they had handed her an apple.
It took me a long while process this. I found myself muttering for days. “Why is it, that someone who wrote a children’s cookbook, could not find the time to cook a healthy meal for their child’s birthday party?” Well, really it is none of my business, and I had to invent some empathetic imagined scenarios as antidotes for myself, and then I had to flip it all on it’s head and make it about me. “Well Kirsten, you really like to cook, that is your lesson from this.” My commitment towards health and wellbeing runs very deep. It was a big lesson for me to turn all those hard feelings into compost. “It can all become soil Kirsten, just bury it and go back later and dig in the dirt.” I tell myself. That is what you have to do you know, you can not control others, but you can add some light in your mind, and love in your heart, and turn it all into a creative garden where good stuff grows.
Even though I tend to be emotionally extreme in my expressions, I am not alone in the feelings many have towards the food situation in the community, country, and larger world. Thankfully, awareness is on the rise. There are still some things in our home that I could make from scratch, or purchase from a more reputable source, but what is most important, is that I try. We can only know what we know as we learn it. We can only buy what we can buy within our means. We can only prioritize what is most important with the time we have. I see so many families out there trying hard and doing so much work.
Now some of you are going to think, Oh Kirsten, you are so funny, you are just like me! And others are going to think, Kirsten, you are nuts, who cares, just chill out! But either way I am sharing my truth, that what you, or my children put in their mouth, is really, really important to me. I want good food for everyone. There will always be those that care more, or care less, but this is my way. I care a lot.
Thank goodness I started using Truthpaste right?
The girls were both very curious about Truthpaste. “I like the name.” Elle said as she unscrewed the lid. “Mmm, it smells good. But it looks like mud.” She said sticking her nose into the jar. “It has mud in it!” I said. “Well they call it clay, but clay is a very fine sort of mud.” Interestingly the girls were not too concerned to hear this. “Here,” I said. “Take this little paddle and spread it on your toothbrush.” They each did as I asked, taking a small amount with a dash of caution that can come with trying new things. Truthpaste does not come with a wooden paddle, but it would be a nice accessory if anyone wanted to collaborate with them. I was given this lovely wooden spreader by Deborah @larksnest …
As to be expected, Maya put on a song and dance. Spluttering and pulling faces. The same thing happened five years ago when we changed from Colgate to Toms of Maine (Tom’s is actually owned by Colgate and no better). Colgate, Crest and all the rest are sickly, synthetically sweet, but you don’t realise it until you stop using them. The same reactions were present again when we changed from Tom’s to Weleda Salt Toothpaste. Which was another big shift, because Tom’s while not as sweet, still has the foaming agents and synthetic additives. The girls found that shift even harder, but we did it. We get so used to our ways, change can be uncomfortable, but change wakes up the senses, one way or another. I have found that it is really healthy to make these changes, both for your children’s bodies and their souls. It makes them adaptable, it develops their coping skills. A soul that can accept new healthy, non sweet, non foaming toothpaste is pretty open and expansive.
It could take some coaxing, or it could be simple. I just say, “This is what we are doing now, we will use it up until it is gone, and see how we go, it doesn’t have to be forever, but we are giving it a try!” Then I explain all the reasons why, “It is full of ancient wisdom and it is going to make us shine brighter!” I say. I like to get fancy with the folklore first. “It is an Ayurvedic recipe, and the Vedas are very powerful, so we should take note.”
In a rhapsodical way, all the Truthpaste goodness pours out of me. “It is made of plants and minerals, sourced from an ethical supply chain and it will help keep the micro biological balance in our digestive systems, which starts in the mouth you know?”
The girls get it. Elle’s soul floats up first, and then Maya’s. Rise, rise, rise. This is contemporary enlightenment – knowing what is right for YOU. I really am proud of them, not too proud, but yes, very grateful that together we get to grow and learn.
We live in a place where the water is heavily treated. I see the tell-tale fluorosis white spots of excess fluoride in children in our community, and know, that while I can’t control the fluoride in the water, I can choose fluoride free toothpaste – which I do, because I know I am ingesting it in the water. Fluoride is one of those things, where there is no one answer that suits all people, you must use your own intuition because as Anna Wigmore says,
“The food you eat can be either the safest and most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison.”
Toothpaste, while it is not food you are supposed to ingest, you inadvertently take in a little every day. I think it is really positive to stop and read the ingredients and connect to the vibration of the product. Let your body and soul guide you. You have to be willing to ask yourself for your truth. “Is this good for me?”
Truthpaste is good for me. I like how it feels in my mouth, it is source rich. When I look through the Truthpaste feed, it is exactly what I want to support in the world, and when I see Kirsten’s smiling face (yes, a Kirsten makes Truthpaste) I think, that is who I want to embrace. We are all connected, we are all friends, just trying to help each other find balance in this world. I am really inspired by Kirsten’s Ayurvedic knowledge and her focus on oral hygiene and health. I am encouraged to invest more energy in oil pulling, tongue scrapping and natural ingredients. “We love plants!” Kirsten said, and it seems they love people too.
P.S. For those thinking of making your own toothpaste, I saw that Ashley @homeinthehive started a very interesting conversation with her homemade toothpaste this week.
Note: This is a a creative semi non fictional story, which means some characters are true, and others are made up friends who come to life with my appropriation, exaggerations, interpretations and imagination, but none the less, all real to me.
Thank you for reading Magnesium Blue