When we found out I was pregnant, we knew Hawai'i was one of the best places to raise our son. As islanders, the island's vibe matched with what we were familiar with. Even more, we knew there was plenty to learn, like how to take some of the problems of our developing countries and boost them into long term solutions using modern techniques.
We want to pass on the lessons we grew up knowing about sustainability and grow deeper alongside our boy. So, here are 3 of the many benefits of raising our son off the grid.
To give a simple but straightforward answer, off-grid just made sense to us. My partner and I both grew up on islands. I'm originally from Jamaica, and he's from the Philippines. We're both used to not having certain amenities like a washer and dryer, hot water, and a flushing toilet. Something about growing up the way we did feels in touch with nature and thereby life itself.
Hawai'i felt like merging our root worlds with a splash of western modernization. It's taking the things we know and adding a more sustainable aspect to them. So, instead of monthly expense electricity, we invested in solar. Instead of buying all our food, we grow some and share our crops with the community.
Almost everyone who goes off the grid does so to build their self and community reliance. Our society teaches us to rely on the government for just about everything. If the government isn't stable or isn't politically just, the resources are allocated unevenly. That's the problem we now face, and many people struggle to become independent and maintain self-support.
We want to teach our son how to create or find solutions that involve his own self-empowerment. If he's hungry, he will understand the grocery store isn't the only place he can find food. If he needs shelter, he will understand how to build his own house out of anything, from guava trees to concrete and everything between.
It's easy to lose connection with ourselves, the people around us, and nature as we grow older. The responsibilities and distractions are great at taking our attention from the true values of life, whatever those may mean for a person.
Living off-grid is our way to teach our son how to stay connected in a way that matters. By understanding how life really works (from how nature breaks things down from one state to another or how solar panels work), he'll see how interconnected everything is. The way you treat others, animals, and the earth is inseparable from how you treat yourself.
There are many ways to honor life and our place in it. Is off-grid for everyone? I believe so because of its ability to foster self-sufficiency and connection. However, I know not everyone will adopt such a lifestyle.
Still, we can all lower our footprint on the planet. Going entirely off-grid isn't the only way to make an impact. Find what suits but challenges you to take care of yourself and other living beings for a more balanced ecosystem.
Parenting is awesome. Sleep is overrated. Every day is an adventure.
Meet Our KeaMommy Contributor: Nadia Rumbolt
Nadia Rumbolt is a mom of many trades, including creative writing, blogging, van life, minimalism, veganism, the beach, nature, and the occult.