A few blogs ago I wrote about my two birthing experiences. The first was a homebirth and the other was a hospital birth. Yesterday I found one of my breastfeeding counselor documents about reporting baby-friendly hospital practices after hospital births and it brought tears to my eyes. I remembered that I’ve been avoiding writing about the difference between my two babymoons. After I admitted I still had some grieving to do for my last birthing experience, I started rejoicing about the memories of the first.
The first thing I ate after the homebirth was an organic, local peach I’d been saving for the perfect moment.
After my daughter was born, though the last 45-or-so-minutes leading up to her birth were spent trying not to breathe in the delicious but overwhelming scent of daddy-to-be stir-fried sweet potatoes. The meal became one of my absolute favorites after the day our daughter was born, but all I could think about that day when asked if I was hungry was finding that beautiful, simple, ridiculously sweet peach and devouring it.
That I did, after nursing my new daughter and blissing out on the trip of an ecstatic birth experience. I quickly went to sleep, as most people do after 8+ hours of intense work. I spent the next 8 weeks,
relaxing focusing deeply on staying relaxed.
The babymoon ceremony, was the first ceremony we experienced together and now is the perfect time for another one as I reminisce on our first celebration of our divine connection to each other. Breastfeeding all the time, speaking mostly spanish and sign language to my daughter, observing her expressions, practicing intuitive development and subtle communication, dreaming together, being in a meditative state, doing yoga and breathwork, daddy playing guitar, chanting and sound healing, writing, feeling, expressing, eating well, having visits with family and friends, taking it easy and healing my body and mind; integrating our new experiences. I seriously recommend celebrating and commemorating life changing events with ceremonies, especially that first opportunity with a babymoon!
I kept a purple (which is my daughter’s favorite color today) journal of the daily adventures and awe-inspiring moments of my daughter’s life. I marveled over the way people showed affection, concern, interest in my life as a mother. I fully enjoyed becoming a mother. I spent my time getting to know this little girl and seeing how she chose to experience life.
Then one day, she walked…
Not long after that, she had the audacity to talk, and she got even more dramatic in years 1, 2 and 3. Today she turned 4. We’re still doing a lot of the things we did in that first 8 weeks of her life. Still meditating together, dreaming together,breathwork,playing music and dancing, chanting and sound healing, and we take eating well quite seriously.
We’re even still breastfeeding…yes I said it!
Not nearly as much, but I’m a huge advocate and supporter of the truth about extended breastfeeding and its benefits and my daughter knows how healthy she is and she’s aware of and grateful that she doesn’t get the sicknesses and illnesses of many of the people we’ve interacted with in her 4 years. She asked for her friends to come visit her in her home, and a banana cake. Luckily for me, ice cream and cake can very well be the same thing for her.
Luckily for her, ice cream is actually frozen bananas, blended or juiced! I’m sure I can find a way to make it more cake-like for the people we share it with, but for her, she is more than satisfied with the idea of these things and knows she doesn’t want the side effects of “cream” that comes from cows. She knows that I already have milk in my breasts, and has no desire for milk from any other animal(she actually responded to someone’s grocery list by telling me this). She uses her imagination to turn fruit into candy, veggies into chips, etc. She has shown me true love. True love of life, is being brave, being confident, being committed to improving and experiencing the joys of life. True love of life is completely being.
This weekend we’re going to spend a day at the park with a candy-free Dora pinata, and today we bought a bilingual singing Dora birthday balloon. We bought the materials for a multicultural, spiritually diverse ceremony tomorrow and we’re going to invite her friends over for a movie by Hayao Miyazaki. We’re gearing up for a very exciting weekend and allowing it to flow moment by moment. There was no booking of a party space, invitations or real planning. (I feel like a real rebel, my mom after 3 years of my bad birthday planning(and stressing me out about it) is now blase’ about it!)
My beautiful, vegan, healthy, smart, compassionate and hilariously funny little girl is no longer a baby. I remember so much about being 4 years old. I realized I’m having a bit of an
growth epiphany myself. In my parenting today, some things clicked in my communication with my daughter in ways they haven’t before. I can communicate with her more effectively. I can communicate with her more intuitively. We dream together, meditate together, we’re constantly interacting, adjusting and supporting each other’s growth. Much like the first 8 weeks after her birth.
I found a personal journal of mine, about the joys of new motherhood. Things I couldn’t wait to read to her someday.
I’ve noticed her expand her awareness and cognitive ability massively in the last month.She now spells out every word she sees, counts everything she can, constantly translates between English and Spanish and communicates her own and other people’s feelings and health status. She’s very aware of her surroundings. Her memory has always astounded me, and my own memories are tripping me out as I see her grow up. Tonight and over the weekend*, I want to share those thoughts, dreams and written accounts of this parenting phenomena I’m experiencing.
Tonight my daughter played with glowing toys in the heat of night, beneath the stars, with her friends. She played with her first sparkler fireworks and tonight.
She’ll know what its like to have so many firsts, to really appreciate the renewal that is being four, especially in the year of four, 2011, with four as her soul number (22). Her father and I geek out about her level of understanding and we’ve both showed her how excited we are about her progress. We both seemed to have had an awakening of sorts, into the magic of parenting and the rewards of having such innocent souls reciprocate love and truth all the time. She’ll know more than she ever has before, the depths of our love for her tonight and the rest of her life. This time is truly a coming-of-age moment and I want to commemorate it with love and awareness.
Happy birthday to us, and to everyone else who was ever born. May we all learn to truly integrate, appreciate and remember the love that is birth and rebirth.
*I thourougly believe in celebrating in a ceremonial sense and drawing out special moments for maximum integration, i.e. 4-day weekend long festivities.
- Dispelling Homebirth Myths (thefeministbreeder.com)
- Whose Belly Did I Come From? (parenting.blogs.nytimes.com)
- Natural Homebirth Birth – Did that just happen?!!! (nurturingcareermama.wordpress.com)
- An Empowered First Birth (touchstonez.com)
- Twin birth at home (2xtwins.wordpress.com)
- Empowered Birth: From the Personal to the Universal (touchstonez.com)
- 9th Birthday Blessings (revolutionarymoms.wordpress.com)
- What Breastfeeding Has Meant to Me (fromdatestodiapers.com)
- Click This (momentsofexhilaration.com)
- Birth Practices Which Interfere With Breastfeeding (smiffybaby.com)
- Indonesia: Breastfeeding regulations to target formula companies (yubanet.com)