Tiny House shame… (lame!)

21 07 2015

As an Ayurvedic practitioner and yoga instructor, one lesson I personally have taken away from my studies is to not, to the best of my ability, judge anyone on how they choose to live. Everyone is entitled to choose their own journey. I recently chose to live in a THOW for many different reasons (including wanting to participate in sustainable living in the ways that I am able) but that does not mean that I want to judge others who choose to live in a “McMansion”. Don’t get me wrong, I do think it’s a bit ridiculous to have all that space (not trying to be judgmental – practice not perfection!), but I also believe that everyone should live a life that brings them joy. The universe wants all people to be happy equally!

I recently found out that when I first moved into my tiny house I gave one of my TH neighbors “paper towel” shame. I didn’t even know it, and of course never meant to! I don’t use paper towels in my home (I use washcloths for napkins and throw them into the laundry to recycle) so I guess my neighbor started to feel “shamed” that he was using paper towels. When he finally told me, we both started cracking up. How silly! I definitely want him to do what works for him and felt awful that he felt bad about using them just because I don’t!

#FAIL! LOL!

Every month I open my home for “tiny house tours” and I have been “shamed” as well. I have a microwave in my TH and for whatever reason, people like to call me out on it. As an Ayurvedic practitioner I am completely aware that microwaves change the molecular composition of food, and I agree that there are much better ways of cooking things, or reheating food. The ironic thing is – I barely even use my microwave. In actuality – I’m a terrible cook so I tend to eat out more often that at home, and most of the foods I do try to keep in my tiny refrigerator doesn’t need to be cooked in the first place (nuts, fruits & veggies, etc.). I’m trying to not let the microwave comments get to me, but it’s getting repetitive. I have a microwave, I get it. Could I do better? Yes. But that will be on my own time, on my own journey. I’ll get there when I am meant to get there.

I would love to be a person that grows her own food and cooks over an open flame and keeps it as close to nature as possible. The reality is, there is only so much I am capable of doing at this point in my life. Maybe I will evolve into a non-microwave user in the future. That would be nice, I like the idea of that. I am trying to be as conscious as I can. My neighbor still laughs at me for scrutinizing the labels of everything I buy at the grocery store (probably because he has to wait for like an eternity for me since I am a very slow food shopper lol).

For me, going tiny is not meant to shame other people for the way they live. It’s just a personal choice that I made. Of course I support movements towards more sustainable and eco-friendly living, but I’m not looking to force my personal beliefs onto anyone. We are all evolving, and each of us does it in our own way. I’m not apologizing for the way I live my life, and I don’t think that anyone that lives a life founded on love and kindness should either. No matter what the square footage of your house is! Even if I personally do still think large houses are ridiculous 😉 My hope is for everyone to live authentically within their own truth, whatever that may be for them. It’s lame to shame!

Now time for me to get back to my organic smoothie served in a mason jar! ❤

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7 responses

22 07 2015
James

Great post. You are hilarious, my tiny neighbor. I really, really did try with the cloths. I did! LOL

29 07 2015
Suzan

First time visitor here and I just read this post first and a thought came to me pretty quickly. ANYONE who eats out is being subjected to some microwaved food also, so ping pong batt that shame right back at em. Of course choosing your own healthy food and cooking/baking is preferable but you’ll get there..and I try to never use paper towels either except there are some gross “spills” my pooches make that are just too gross for cloth.. lol
I figure that the extra efforts I make in some areas counter effect the inconsiderate folks. Our hearts are at least trying..

and while I live in a larger home it is not because I wish to. My home was filled with family for 20 years- now all grown and I own the home -no mortgage and moving takes funds I do not have. In my area downsizing means higher taxes as mine are capped where as new ones are not. Complex issues..
I continue to dream of a 700 feet space, somewhere green.. At 62 already it may not happen. sigh

27 12 2015
Gail

I, too, have had a home for 20 years, with family, and now all are moving out, with last child starting college next month, in another state. My taxes, too, are tapped out and as low as possible, which is a huge blessing, at 60 years of age. The house has been renovated inside and out, ready to be sold, for past 10 months, which showed me how 2 realtors DIDN’T do the best for me to get bites on this property, so now I’m thinking, should I lease it out or sit tight and try again in a few months, preferably with me selling it myself? Unexpected life issues took place during this 10-month period, and now, I’ve been seriously thinking of downsizing to a tiny house, so I can be close to my youngest, and she can have her own ‘space’ in the tiny house, when needing a break from studies and classes, and will be able to see her two cats more often. I have watched every tiny house tv program that’s been made available to view for past several months, and realize the freedom of having a home built to my specifications, on a trailer bed, is the environment for me, plain and simple. I can take it wherever I wish when the time comes, and not worry about being tied down to taxes, utilities expense (especially having it built ‘off-grid’), HOA fees, yard crews, swimming pool maintenance folks, ect. I, too, am a paper-towel user, & a microwave user, but will eventually learn to use my oven or cooktop without worrying about causing cost of electricity to increase…I will save on cost of purchasing a pick-up truck to move the tiny house for a few years, but maybe at some point I may have to give in…

3 08 2015
Gloria

When you are ready…there are some very nice compact toaster ovens that are more versatile than microwaves.

5 08 2015
Lara

FYI, my microwave died a year ago. I wanted to see if I could hack not using the microwave, so I didn’t buy one until I couldn’t stand it anymore. The workload fell on my toaster oven for reheating. I haven’t missed it!!! I was shocked! I was able to heat everything and anything in my trusty old toaster oven or on the stove. Just an idea for making the switch “IF” you want.

30 03 2016
Marin Green

I’m a paper towel user and a microwave owner that lives in 648 sq feet so I confuse people all the time. I didn’t use paper towels for a longtime but eventually allowed myself the luxury (how many people would never guess folks like us think of them as a luxury) because I care for so many critters plus the ones not soiled with feces/urine can be composted with my weekly city pick up.

I use a microwave because it’s convenient for heating leftovers. At work I don’t have access to a stove or oven so for a meal a day I zap my food. I’m vegan and get shamed for that enough (note that I go out of my way to not push my lifestyle on others but you would be amazed how many people feel the need to tell me why they couldn’t adopt my lifestyle despite me not asking).

I live in a small house. It’s what I could afford and it’s even more space than I need but it helps provide sanctuary to my 4 legged housemates.

My point is we all have reasons and beliefs that have gotten us where we are. Some of our choices make sense to others, some do not. Your point about shaming is sadly necessary in this time of righteousness.

By the way, I was recently shamed for using the word lame which is what initially caught my eye on your article. I’d recommend reviewing ableist language. 🙂

30 03 2016
Marin Green

Straw shame is also a thing. 😉

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