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http://veronikarobinson.com/creativity-camp/

We are now open for bookings for our camp in August 2016. Places can be secured with a deposit.

Veronika x

 

flyer

Inside issue 8 of Starflower Living magazine:

 

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•Editorial
•Irena Sendler
•Motherwort
•Holistic Breast Health
•A Metaphysical look at Miscarriage
•Health Notes
•New Moon in Aquarius
•Mercury Retrograde
•In My Kitchen
•Attachment Parenting Teenagers
•A Gift of a Job?
•Palmistry

FREE to download here: http://starflowerpress.com/living/index.shtml

For twelves years, I edited the holistic parenting magazine The Mother.

I’m excited to bring you a huge collection of podcasts (the largest of its kind anywhere!) based on all the topics I had the pleasure of exploring and/experiencing, both as an editor and as a holistic parent.

I will be launching in December, with weekly podcasts added to the collection. I hope you enjoy them! Love, Veronika xxxxxx

 

Holistic Parenting

Holistic Parenting

Heavily pregnant, on Pakiri Beach, New Zealand

Heavily pregnant, on Pakiri Beach, New Zealand

Instinctive parenting: is it an art or science? To parent instinctively means being in tune with your body and that of your baby/child. Is this an art or a science? Actually, it’s both.

There’s an art to listening to your heart and the way your baby communicates with you, rather than listening to the call of our culture which rewards mother and child separation. An artist must believe in their calling; their life’s work.

Each day they must develop skills and build upon their talent. A bonded mother instinctively knows what is best for her family in the same way an artist knows which colour or shade works for his creation.

The science of instinctive parenting shows that, as mammals, we’re meant to nurture our offspring biologically, at the breast, for at least the first few years of life.

Nature designed us to carry our helpless infants throughout the day until they’re ready to begin crawling. By carrying them against our bodies throughout the day, their muscles work against ours; this helps them to become strong as well as offering them the chance to discharge some of their own energy. It builds their immune system, as well as encouraging healthy brain development when they have a regular ‘face’ to engage with throughout the day.

As mammals, we’re designed to sleep with our babies rather than place them behind bars and away from us.

When science and art meet seamlessly we call this conscious, connected parenting.

The needs of modern babies are exactly the same as those born in the Stone Age:
[] to be birthed peacefully, gently and in private, with natural smells and muffled noises
[] to be held by the mother, and hear her heartbeat immediately after birth
[] to be breastfed, on cue, full term
[] to be carried throughout the day
[] to be slept with at night so the mother’s and baby’s heartbeat and breathing can synchronise
[] to be actively part of family/community life
[] to live in the natural ‘field’ rather than the modern-day electro-magnetic one of wi-fi, electrical equipment, computers, mobile phones, etc.
[] To be connected to Nature
It’s understood that human babies are born about nine months ‘early’, which means they need the first nine months of life ‘in-arms’ to provide an optimal external gestation. The in-utero needs of warmth, movement, food and connection are now met by being carried all day, slept with at night, breastfed on cue (not demand), and by the mother living her life. Constant caregiving by the mother should ensure that all needs of the baby are met almost instantly. The fields of science, anthropology and medicine recognise that this traditional way of nurturing babies is best for short and long-term physical, emotional and psychological health and well-being. This is commonly known as attachment parenting, but is more suitably described as intact parenting.

The needs of our growing children and teenagers are the same as those of Stone Age children:

[] To live in awe and celebration of the natural world
[] to climb trees, swim in lakes, cross rivers, climb rocks and hills, see the sunrise and sunset, the Moon, stars and visible planets
[] to eat natural, living wholefoods and drinks
[] to exercise all muscles of the body every day
[] to understand survival skills
[] to feel the Sun, rain and earth on their skin

Their bodies were never designed, and haven’t adapted to, sitting for hours on Facebook, ipads, iphones and YouTube, and eating deadened processed foods and drinks.

Do parents who wish to raise their children in a more natural way to the mainstream face an impossible task? Only if they let culture pull them away from their art and from Nature’s science.

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.

On an Autumnal day in New Zealand in March, 1996, I gave birth to my first child at home in a birth pool by candlelight. Mozart’s music played in the room, and she arrived in this world peacefully. She didn’t cry or fuss, but just looked into our eyes and took in her surroundings.

Half an hour later, it was time to cut the cord (if I knew then what I do now, we’d have had a *lotus birth and not cut the cord). She howled and screamed. It has been said that cutting the cord doesn’t hurt, but she clearly felt ‘something’ as our physical connection was severed.

 

Seconds after giving birth at home, by candlelight and Mozart, to my daughter Bethany.

Seconds after giving birth at home, by candlelight and Mozart, to my daughter Bethany.

 

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For eighteen years, we have shared our lives. At seven this morning, we waved goodbye. That umbilical cord was well and truly cut. And it bloody well hurt me too. She’s on her own now. This part of my mothering journey with her is over.

I’m no longer there to protect her, make sure she eats her greens, warn her off certain boys, and prompt a bedtime to ensure adequate sleep. My job is done.

I look forward to hearing all the stories about university life. But today, I grieve. Today I trust the tears which fall so freely to cleanse old wounds.

I have found it interesting in these past few weeks how differently people respond to pain. Those who have attachment parented their children ~ they understand. They allow me my grief without trying to band aid over it.

And then there are people who are quick to remind me that she’ll be home in ten weeks. It’ll zip by, they say. Maybe. But I doubt it.

If you ever miscarry, someone is bound to say ‘never mind, you can try again’ or ‘it wasn’t meant to be’…rather than just honouring the loss. They mean well, of course, but it doesn’t help.

Yes, Christmas might be just around the corner (at my age it’s always just around the corner!)…but that’s more than 150 meals we won’t be sharing together. More than seventy mornings where I won’t get to see her smile or share a cup of tea.

As a bonded family, every day is a lifetime to savour. So, in some people’s world ten weeks is nothing. This morning, for me, it is a long time away.

I appreciate she’s not going off to war or ill in hospital. She’s a beautiful, healthy young woman with adventures ahead of her ~ but that doesn’t make the cutting of the umbilical cord any less painful.

The eighteen years between giving birth and saying goodbye, now THAT has zipped by.

beth