Life on planet Norway

Growing up I wanted to have 10 kids. I also quite seriously thought I would have them on another planet. I read a lot of science fiction and I was sure technology would catch up with imagination by the time I was an adult and we’d all be choosing which planetary expedition group to volunteer for after college. I’d pick the one going to the planet with the slightly arid but hospitable climate, where the blue-orange tone of the rocks always reminded us of how far we’d travelled, but the cool sunshine and tender breezes and our little house next to the rippling lavender-rocked creek would make it all worth it.(It was the 80’s, I was really into pastels)  And the 10 kids, they’d love it. A whole planet to explore and wild (benign) nature to play in all day long. It’d be hard work, we’d have to homeschool, and homebirth, and home-doctor, and home-everything! Our nearest neighbors would be an hour’s walk away, and we’d spend most of our time in the garden making sure we grew ourselves enough food (with good help from the hydroponic gardening setup and seed bank we brought with us from Earth). Hard work, but satisfying. Pioneers in a brand-new world!

I’m a grown-up now with a husband and 5 kids. Half of 10, that’s pretty close! We live on an island in Norway, which sometimes feels like another planet compared to where I grew up in California. The kids go to the local school but my heart beats to the unchooling rhythm so I do everything I can to help them find and follow their own paths through life. Homebirthing, check, big fan! Home-doctoring, well I prefer manuka honey to antibiotics but I’ll go with the latter if circumstances call for it. No self-sustaining farm yet, but we have some strawberry plants, so maybe one day we’ll learn more and grow more. I’m always open to learning! So there you go, the world’s not quite where I envisioned it being with regards to interplanetary exploration and settlement. And if we did go to a new planet we’d probably have to kill off the natives in order to take over, and that’s not ok ever. But my life does sort of remotely resemble my vision from childhood, if you just squint your eyes and don’t pay attention to the pesky little details.

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