SL63DRather thrilled to have the gorgeous Lucy H. Pearce writing about Wild Mothering in this issue of Starflower Living (out on Saturday ~ New Moon in Sagittarius). Lucy is the author of The Rainbow Way: cultivating creativity in the midst of motherhood and Moon Time: a guide to celebrating your menstrual cycle, as well as Moods of Motherhood: the inner journey of mothering.

www.starflowerpress.com

About Veronika

Veronika Sophia Robinson is the author of many non-fiction books and novels.

You can also find her on:
Facebook | Twitter | WattPad


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When I was a young girl of about seven, I would walk miles along the dusty road to the nearest church. It was for Catholics, and I wasn’t one. That didn’t matter. I would walk that road with utter devotion, always with an eye out for snakes. I was off to talk with the Divine Father!

My mother had sewn me a beautiful ankle-length turquoise taffeta dress for church.

The rural church was a white wooden building with a red corrugated iron roof and sat handsomely right beside the creek in Freestone, a rural community on the Darling Downs, near Warwick. (Queensland, Australia.)

 

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Scrubland in Freestone

 

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Freestone, near Warwick, on Queensland’s Darling Downs.

 

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My childhood home nestled against beautiful eucalyptus-covered mountains.

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Freestone State School. I’m on the left, third row up. 1975.

 

 

In childhood, I’d wear my baby sister’s square terry cloth nappies on my head and pretend I was in a nun’s habit. I’ve since experienced past life regression which has shown me lives in monasteries and convents. I guess those memories were strong in early childhood.

 

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My Mum and baby sister, Ramona, 1973

Although I still delight in the nature of church buildings, my faith is far removed from any man-made religion. I pray regularly, but not in the way depicted in the movies or religious books.

Today a friend and I were talking about such matters as faith and loneliness. I said that even when I’m alone, I know I’m never alone. My connection with the Divine is a constant in my life, whether it’s when I stand under a dark sky illumined with starlight or have my hands in the cool dark soil.

 

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Sunrise from my garden.

I pray in gratitude for fresh air, and sunshine on my skin. I touch the face of God when I brush my fingers on the bark of a tree or hear the hooting of an owl or make love with my lover.

 

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To feel the strength of trees in the forest.

No matter how upsetting life can be or frustrated I might get with a certain situation, I always know that I’m not walking this life alone. I feel it, in the deepest cells of my being, that my Breathmaker and I are one. I may well disagree with Him/Her sometimes (okay, often), but together we walk along the path.

I pray when I read beautiful scripts by candle light, such as anything written by Kahlil Gibran.

I pray when I see a smile on my child’s face.

 

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Sunday morning sunrise at Long Meg, the stone circle near our home.

My first thoughts when I wake and the last thoughts I have before sleep are also a prayer: forgiveness.

I pray every time I have a thought, and am on constant Guard duty making sure that negative thoughts are quickly ousted. I’m a work in progress, and that’s a prayer, too.

I pray when I move firewood and when I wash dishes. I pray when I hug a friend and imagine our hearts connecting as one.

I pray when I am beside the crackling woodstove, with nothing but the sound of flames for company.

I pray when my heart moves to the haunting sound of cello music.

I am praying when I prepare my family meals or wash their clothes.

My life is a prayer, and I’m thankful that I have an inner church in which to bow down to the Universal Energy which connects us all.

About Veronika

Veronika Sophia Robinson is the author of many non-fiction books and novels.

You can also find her on:
Facebook | Twitter | WattPad


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bethThis week I had the pleasure of having my daughter home for a couple of nights. Seven weeks ago she left home to begin studying music at Bangor University (on the north Wales coast). She said she wanted to spend time together cooking. Turned out, I cooked and she chatted. And ate!

It is said, of parenting, that we give our children roots so that one day they’ll be able to fly. It is fair to say that we wondered how she’d survive away from home. We needn’t have worried, as it turns out. She is flying, and it’s such a joy to see her wings taking her to new worlds, meeting new people and discovering more of who she is.

Yes, those roots were solid and strong, and I’ve no doubt they’ll always have a place in her life. There was a certain sense of motherly satisfaction that she enjoyed being home again so much, and even more joy that she was so excited to head back to uni again. She is growing, changing, expanding and discovering. Roots and Wings.

About Veronika

Veronika Sophia Robinson is the author of many non-fiction books and novels.

You can also find her on:
Facebook | Twitter | WattPad


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More often than not, as a mother it can feel like we’re constantly on the go.
There’s a reason why motherhood is unpaid. No one could afford us! Even with one daughter now in university, and the other doing A levels, I feel just as busy as when they were toddlers. Sometimes, more so.

 

I remember those days when I had just one daughter ~ that glorious first year of parenting where I swear I was the best mother in the world. I was, actually. I loved motherhood!

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There’s a question a man asked me during that time, and it was this: so what do you do all day?

 

Some men just have NO idea! Although my parenting looks different now than it did 18 years ago, one thing is clear: motherhood doesn’t come with annual holidays!

 

I decide to write down what I did yesterday. It looked like this:

6am Woke up and practised Hoʻoponopono (ho-o-pono-pono) ~ an ancient Hawaiian practice of reconciliation and forgiveness. http://www.hooponopono.org/

Stood on the porch breathing in the fresh smell of a new day (one of my favourite pick-me-ups), then loaded up an armful of firewood to light the upstairs fire so it would be cosy when Eliza, my 16-year-old, woke up sometime mid morning.

 

Made lunch for my husband to take to work.

 

Had a luxurious hot shower and ate breakfast.

 

8.30am Drove him to work (he works as Santa Claus each year at Center Parcs during November and December)

 

9.30 Home again

 

Edited two articles for Starflower Living magazine while Eliza was still sleeping. http://www.starflowerpress.com/living/index.shtml

 

Moved three loads of firewood up the garden.

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Vacuumed upstairs and downstairs lounge rooms. Cleaned the kitchen floor.

Cleaned bathroom and ensuite.

Put on a load of washing.

Folded a load of washing from two days ago. It seems to take forever to dry clothes at this time of year!

Hung up new load of washing to dry by the woodstove.

Ordered Heart of the Labyrinth (by Nicole Schwab). See how easy it is to sneak in a bit of self-love into the day?

http://nicoleschwab.com/books/

 

Made lunch for my daughter.

 

Made sweetcorn and curry falafel for dinner.

Chatted with a friend who popped by with some awesome photos from her world travels (see them in issue 6 of Starflower Living).

12.30 Drove my daughter to her job as a catering assistant at the gym café.

Picked up some vegetables at the shop.

Danced a jig in Sainsbury’s car park (about 50 times) upon learning my brother and his fantastic partner have finally got engaged (so looking forward to an Outback Wedding in Australia! Whoop Whoop!!!! I’ve been asked to be the celebrant. WHAT AN HONOUR!)

1.30pm Drove home again singing very loudly!

Unpacked shopping.

Baked a gluten-free apple and cinnamon cake with almond crumble for Saturday night dessert.

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Washed dishes (I’m sure they breed all on their own!)

Chopped kindling (unsuccessfully)

Laid out kindling and wood in downstairs fire so it was ready to light when we got in.

 

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Took out compost.

Took phone call from hyper uni daughter (something about hair dye and train ticket home for Christmas and asking me what I’m going to cook when she visits for a couple of days this week. Oh the pressure!)

Fed cat. Gave said cat lecture about starving cats in Africa and not to turn his nose up at the food in his dish!

2pm Fed myself.

Washed more dishes.

Proofread some more of Transcend (the third book in Eliza’s Three Stages trilogy)

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4.45pm Drove back to town. Sang loudly to Kenny Chesney to wake myself up.

Spent an hour at the gym in fitness suite until Eliza finished work.

Hung out with my daughter for an hour at Costa and chatted about philosophers while waiting for husband to finish work at 6.30pm. She’d received a Kahlil Gibran book in the post from my mum that morning, and was loving it.

Home just after 7pm.

Lit downstairs fire.

Had dinner together (so glad I made it early in the day!)

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Watched some Nashville to unwind (my favourite show)

Spent a few minutes reading a book called When I Loved Myself Enough.

Husband (gorgeous man that he is) massaged my back and Eliza’s with magnesium oil. http://drsircus.com/books/e-book/transdermal-magnesium-therapy/

I’m sooooooooo ready for bed. Just want to collapse!

10pm
When I’m at my most exhausted, my daughter will ask for a cuddle before bed.

“Cuddle” is code for: can I lie on your bed with you and talk? These ‘talks’ can last a very long time, and boy do I get into trouble if I dare close my eyes or start snoring!

 

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Today is Sunday
And guess what? I get to do all that again today, though in a somewhat different order!

By 8.30, we headed out the door so I could drop Paul and Eliza off at work for her 9am start. I’d been awake a couple of hours. Made their lunches, and managed to have a shower and eat some breakfast.

By 9.20, after dropping Paul off, I am in the gym. During my work out I enjoy listening to Clarissa Pinkola Estes’ audio The Dangerous Old Woman.

By 11am, I am home again. A few hours reprieve until I pick Eliza up at 2pm, bring her home, and then go back to town to get Paul tonight at 6.30.

I chop kindling, and carry an armful of wood to my writing room. While that’s lighting, I head downstairs and put on a load of Eliza’s washing. The kettle has boiled.
Me time! I brew a mug of dandelion and burdock tea and grab a handful of walnuts.

Feel immense gratitude that there is some leftover celery soup on the stove that I can eat for lunch. It’s also a reminder to make more soup for Eliza to take to school tomorrow.

I light a stick of Nag Champa incense. It’s the smell of home. My home. I feel myself relax.

However, I’m conscious of all the jobs that need doing: vege beds need weeding before the snow comes. A massive pile of twigs and branches needs burning. The paths need sweeping of leaves and moss so nobody slips when coming or going from the house.

The skirting boards need the dust coming off.

I want to prepare the spare bedroom for Bethany’s flying visit this week. Eliza moved into her bedroom when she left for uni, so I need to make sure her new room feels ‘comfy’ for her. (Even when they leave home, the mothering doesn’t stop!)

Not today. None of the jobs will happen today.

For now, it’s just me: a cup of tea, a room that smells great, and the crackle of the fire. Just me, and the sound of the click of the keyboard. Peace.

Mothering can feel like being tethered to the kitchen sink. And some days, it is literally like that. But, as with anything in life, we have a choice. We always have a choice. The sink can be a refuge. My hands in hot water for ten minutes warms me up beautifully. It’s a time to look out the window and relax into the view of the trees or enjoy watching the birds.

 

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My two hours spent in the car (over three journeys each day this weekend) can be a time to chat with my family, or, when I’m on my own, to have thinking time or listen to Mozart or other music depending on my mood.

I learnt early on, as a journalist, to be constantly aware of my surroundings. My list above doesn’t include the red squirrel I delighted in seeing this morning as I drove through a beautiful forest, or the lovely smile from a man at the gym.

It doesn’t include the great text message which made my day. Nor does it include all the spaces in between.

For example, moving firewood up the garden, while being a chore, is also a wonderful time to breathe fresh air, run my fingers along the cypress or grab a raspberry. The joy of planting Autumn Bliss raspberries is that you can actually have the pleasure of eating fresh, in-season, fruit in November!

raspberry

Finding joy in our mothering is about embracing the jobs we do, but also breathing in the spaces that are inbetween. It’s allowing ourselves to see and feel motherhood as a moving meditation. Folding my daughter’s laundry is a time to slow down and realise that she, too, like her older sister, will soon be out in the world.

Taking out the compost and giving myself a minute to stand under the trees gives me a chance to say ‘thanks’ for being in a country and time in history that offers me fresh fruit and vegetables. I will never forget my mother, born in wart-time Germany, telling me the only time they had fresh fruit was at Christmas. It was simply unaffordable.

Moving firewood gives me a chance to be thankful that we have both the luxury and necessity of having a natural element in our home.

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Washing dishes is a moment to be grateful that I’m not a beggar or eating food from bins. I have dishes. I have a home. I have a kitchen sink. Got dishes to wash? Suck it up, princess!

Every job of mothering is a gift that allows us, if we choose, to go within. We can feel like slaves, duty-bound to the constant needs of a family, or we can act like a goddess and go gracefully through the day.

In astrology, motherhood is represented by the zodiac sign, Cancer (nurturing). While this is largely what we do, I often feel that the sign Virgo would be more appropriate. It is the sign of service. And isn’t that what we do, as mothers? We serve.

About Veronika

Veronika Sophia Robinson is the author of many non-fiction books and novels.

You can also find her on:
Facebook | Twitter | WattPad


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http://thebreathingghosts.wordpress.com/2014/11/05/interview-with-veronika-sophia-robinson/

 

 

About Veronika

Veronika Sophia Robinson is the author of many non-fiction books and novels.

You can also find her on:
Facebook | Twitter | WattPad


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Welcome To the The Mother magazine’s Blog Carnival: “Friendship and Connection” The Mother magazine is a holistic, natural mothering publication. It is with great pleasure that we share this topic with such a talented group of bloggers. You will find links to the each of the other posts at the end of this one. We hope you enjoy them!

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written by Veronika Sophia Robinson: In my twelve years of editing The Mother magazine, the highlight for me was the friendships I forged with other women (not just mothers).

 

I live rurally, and the chance of meeting like-minded women locally is ridiculously small. I’ve met my closest friends through both the publication and the family camps I hosted for subscribers. These are friendships which will last a lifetime. They were founded on a shared passion for raising children consciously and investing in holistic family life, and the growth that each of us has experienced since then has been huge. We have been witnesses to each others’ journey: the laughter, the pain, the triumphs, the grief, the joy, the loss, the frustrations, and the ease.

 

This circle connects us, despite the miles. During the family camps, I facilitated Blessingway ceremonies, a Handfasting, naming ceremony and private rituals for grief.

Camp kitchen at The Mother magazine family camp 2013

Camp kitchen at The Mother magazine family camp 2013

The Blessingway ceremonies featured the red-thread ritual. I still have these threads, woven into old journals, and used as bookmarks. The miles may separate us, and the years may roll forward with increasing speed, but these women ~ these soul systers ~ remain connected with me through time and space.

 

Photograph by Jacqui Ferguson during a Red Thread ritual at a TM camp, from The Blessingway book.

Photograph by Jacqui Ferguson during a Red Thread ritual at a TM camp, from The Blessingway book.

 

The reason I choose red for the thread is because it is the colour of blood, and is what links all humans. During a Blessingway ceremony, the ball of hemp or wool is passed to the pregnant guest of honour who then wraps it around her wrist several times. She throws the ball across the circle to one of her guests. That woman also wraps it around her wrist several times before throwing it to someone else in the circle. This continues until everyone is linked into the web. This circle is a wonderful symbol of connection.

 

Handfasting at a TM camp bringing together love, friendship and connection

Handfasting at a TM camp bringing together love, friendship and connection

The guest of honour cuts the string each side of her wrist, and then cuts the string around the circle. Each guest wears the string until she hears the joyous news that the baby has been born.

 

 

Labyrinth at The Mother magazine camp

Labyrinth at The Mother magazine camp

 

Even after the string is cut, we recognise our connection ~ that we all still come from the same ball of yarn. Women of the medicine wheel sense this energetically, and really feel connected to the circle in the weeks to come, and for some of us, for years to come.

 

Prayer flags made at The Mother magazine camp

Prayer flags made at The Mother magazine camp

 

In Native American myth, The Spider Grandmother (Spider Woman), created all life by spinning her web and connected all living life together using her magical thread.

 

The web that is woven in myth also symbolises how we weave a life for ourselves, and have the ability to always choose what and when to thread next; which way to weave. Spider woman teaches us about friendship; that we are all connected.

 

Friendship teaches us about trust, love, kindness, empathy, and awareness. The friendships I have found through The Mother magazine have changed my life.

 

I’ve also come to have friendships with women I’ve never met physically, but only know through emails. So many times I ‘forget’ that we’ve not met, because the bond is so strong.

 

I feel blessed by the integrity of those women who I call friends, and am deeply thankful for the bonds that knit our lives together, even when we’re separated by long distances and busy lives. We connect at a heart level. We know, that at any minute, we would drop everything to be there for the other. That’s friendship.

Blessingway

 

Thank you for visiting The Mother magazine blog carnival, read further and enjoy the other fantastic bloggers!

 

Hope in the Heartache, Light in the Darkness

“A child heats your lap with a fever that rages fire. Your chest heaves, holding an unimaginable weariness like a weight pinning you to the floor. Tears threaten at your lashes. In this moment you want to cry out; for help, for understanding…”

Follow Starr and The Mother magazineFacebookTwitter

The Mama Club

“The internal battle between the nurturing unconditional Mama and the pregnant woman who watches pandemonium unfold from outside of her own body is already raging at this early morning hour. I can feel myself unraveling. I know I am going to yell. I know I have to contain myself.Pull it together. Breathe. Get the Coffee in the Cup. Try to Connect.”
Follow Kati from THE BEST THINGSFacebookTwitter
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The Dream Friendship

“For me a true friendship is built on honesty, love, trust and belief in each other. When you have a friend with this kind of connection life is so much easier, especially the journey of motherhood.”

Follow Vicky from MOTHERING A DREAM

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Twins and Friendship

“After I had my twins and the weeks turned into months I began to feel afraid the words may ring true. I began to feel estranged from my old self, as if she had died but I had just then realized it. I felt as if I were imprisoned in my own home…”

Follow Miranda from Twinning ItFacebookTwitter

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The Red Thread

“I feel blessed by the integrity of those women who I call friends, and am deeply thankful for the bonds that knit our lives together, even when we’re separated by long distances and busy lives. We connect at a heart level.”

Follow Veronika Sophia RobinsonFacebookTwitter

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On Kindred Spirits

“At times, I envy the ease with which my toddler makes friends. When we are at the park, now that we’re (mostly) past the how-dare-you-play-on-MY-slide phase, making friends is generally as simple as “I’m small; you’re small; let’s play!” And off Bug goes with whatever other little kid happens to be there that day, while I look on wistfully.”

Follow Holly from Leaves of Lavender

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Where Moms Make Friends in the Digital Age

“Before the Internet, moms met each other at Mothers’ Centers, when they dropped off and picked up their kids from nursery school, at child birth classes, in their neighborhood where moms used to knock on each others’ doors for tea and a chat, and at work”

Follow Laurie Hollman, PhDFacebookTwitter

About Veronika

Veronika Sophia Robinson is the author of many non-fiction books and novels.

You can also find her on:
Facebook | Twitter | WattPad


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