Crunchy Gone Soft: Finding Freedom in Letting Go


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Confession: I am a soggy mom.

Apparently, this is what we do now — categorize our lifestyles by texture. Not to be confused with crunchy, oily, lumpy, and bumpy, Soggy Moms start out with a crunchy mindset but then soften the longer they sit. 

With that said, I’d like to tell you a story. A story of growth.  The evolution of a Soggy Mom.

Once upon a time, a young woman began doing a massive amount of research. The subject? Unmedicated childbirth.  She was pregnant with her second child and had just seen that Riki Lake documentary, “The Business of Being Born.” In case you have somehow made it through pregnancy without an annoying friend raving about this documentary (sorry to friends I have annoyed) it’s pretty much required viewing for anyone considering an unmedicated child-birthing experience. That movie, coupled with the fear she felt through her delivery of her first child, provided enough emotion to fuel her resolve for the entire 9 months leading up to her labor. 

Our friend read all the books. Even the really, really weird ones. She researched all of the pregnancy diets, pain management techniques, medications, and vaccines. Future soggy-mom could quote the c-section rates of every hospital within a 50-mile radius. She stayed up late and made friends online. Friends who encouraged her to pursue her ideals. 

Well, crunchy-mom did not get her unmedicated birth that go-around. Transition got the best of her and she became the quintessential psycho screaming for an epidural. The shame, oh the shame! It was so real. She went back to her online friends and talked about what possibly went wrong. She couldn’t blame being unprepared, or pushy doctors, or anything she had come across in her books. The simple truth: labor really really hurt. Like, a whole lot. 

Soon, our future Soggy Mom took another shot at it when pregnant with her third child. She did it. She really did the hardest most rewarding thing she had ever done in her life, and it was every bit as wonderful and empowering as she thought it would be. Online friends were inspired by her birth story, and soggy-mom took the next few years to really settle into motherhood. Glorious, crunchy motherhood. Or so she thought…

Three years after her crunchy victory and in labor with her fourth child, soggy-mom threw her hypnobaby CDs across the room and insisted on an epidural. Again. And the guilt that she felt? Completely nonexistent. She didn’t go back and over-analyze what “went wrong” with her natural minded friends, or even think of it as a failure at all.

You see, something happened to our friend in the three years between the delivery of her third and fourth child. Reality.




Yes, as she mothered her young ones, she spent months researching GMOs, alternative discipline methods, vaccines, and homeopathy. But as time went on, reality set in and softened things up just a bit. 

That’s the plight of the Soggy Mom. We desire to be crunchier, but as reality seeps in we become softer,  like the bowl of (non-GMO but not ideally nutritious) Cheerios left on the counter. We find crunchiness both appealing and exhausting. Labor pains hurt. An occasional handful of Goldfish crackers isn’t really that huge of a problem, and sometimes your kid just needs a time-out.

Yep, there are summers where our gardens are completely overgrown and useless while we have 8 bags of steam-able veggies in the freezer. And they aren’t organic.  Because sometimes tending the garden takes a back seat to keep our little ones thriving. With that said, I suspect there are a lot of women like me. Crunchy at heart, soggy in practice. If this is you, you don’t have to feel guilty anymore. Let it go. Embrace the soggy. 

If you have the longevity to maintain your crunch, that is wonderful. There is nothing wrong with having a strong resolve and hard and fast standards you believe to be important. But if this is something you struggle with and are finding your lifestyle more exhausting than life-giving, can I encourage you: let go. 

We soggy-moms are our own type of mother, and we are all doing the best we can. We know that not everything is black and white, especially when it comes to motherhood. The answer to most of life’s problems lies somewhere between two extremes. In that in-between, we find freedom. 


  1. Oh my goodness, thank you. This is something I’ve been thinking about and you put it so beautifully! Going from RI to VT now to MD, there is quite a soggy/crunchy spectrum and while I long to be at the crunchy side of things it just doesn’t happen. It’s good to have goals…and…it’s good to be able to let those goals go in exchange for peace and contentment with what we have. Besides, I don’t think Autocrat or Del’s are sold in Crunchy-granola stores and sometimes you just need a little coffee milk or Del’s.

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