Last year at this time, I wrote about my determination to rid my life of plastics and the confusion and guilt that ensued. (See that article here.) One year older and wiser, I’m reflecting on what has changed – and what hasn’t.

I’m not feeling so guilty about my lack of knowledge these days. Reducing, reusing, and recycling is both simple, and enormously complicated. Beating  myself up over what I don’t know serves no useful purpose.  My motto – “keep asking questions.”

I do try to wash off and wash out the things I recycle. I consider it a matter of etiquette even if it isn’t strictly necessary. My recycling company tells me they DO sort through the recyclables. I imagine doing that job and know for certain I wouldn’t want to deal with rotting food residue on people’s discarded plastic containers. Yuck!

Greg from Green With Indy has taught me that foil can be recycled. I did not replace the roll of plastic wrap when it ran out. I still use foil, wax paper, and parchment paper. I think in terms of things being bio-degradable if they end up in a landfill. And I use glass and ceramic containers to store and reheat leftovers.

I still haven’t figured out what to do about styrofoam take-out containers and plastic straws, but I’m avoiding them when I can. When I’m with a group of people and ask the server not to give me a straw, I feel good about the opportunity to explain why.

Now, approaching July 2017, I know I can’t save the planet single-handedly and don’t feel overwhelmed by the responsibility to try. I do what I can as diligently as I can; I learn as much as possible and continue to ask questions; and I try to set a good example without being preachy or feeling superior.

You might say I’ve thrown off the shackles of plastic tyranny and I’m feeling fairly independent these days.

Jinny Sauer Bastianelli – BRFM Newsletter Coordinator

Learn more about “Kicking the Plastic Habit” on our website, here.