Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Peace for Everyone

It's a day past Memorial Day, but I just read something that has a lot of meaning for me, regarding war, and veterans.

My father was a veteran of Korea and Vietnam. He was awarded a silver star and a purple heart, and medical disability retirement after being wounded in Vietnam in 1965.

I'll tell more about that later, in another post, but for now, I will just say, that he worked for Peace for the entire rest of his life.

Robert Perry became one of his close friends, and it is his blog that I now refer you to. I think the idea expressed there, is one my father would like to have shared.

A Future Without War


Also want to add this wonderful TED talk:


Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day 2012

Honoring those who served, telling the stories of their
lives and sacrifice, planting the seeds of gratitude in
hearts yet too young to understand their meaning.
Praying for families who's loved ones still serve.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Our Ancestors were "Mom Enough"

In the very unlikely event that you missed the Time magazine cover with the title, "Are You Mom Enough?" I'll just ask you to google it.  The link to the cover itself, will be at the top, followed by Lord knows how many pages of commentary about the controversy it stirred.

Never one to miss a party, I'll throw my comments into the pot, for your stirring pleasure!

I nursed my kids for 3.5 years each. That's right. Well past the "asking for it" stage.

Our pediatrician told me to start on cow milk at 1 year, and it made my baby get hives all over his face and tummy, (anywhere the cow milk had touched his skin), and I was terrified of what it was doing to his insides! We wouldn't be trying that again!

  I learned about extended nursing, which I now call "full term nursing" online from a breastfeeding support board, and found Katherine Dettwyler's study, The Natural Age of Weaning.

That study convinced me that it was not only "okay" to nurse a long time, but that it was the more natural thing to do.

Both my kids have tested "gifted" so I guess  the "promotes brain development" thing, worked out well.  Wait. Doesn't that actually mean,  instead of my kids being "special" that if all kids were being breast fed full term (years) that all kids might be that smart? Perhaps all kids are "gifted" and society just got brainwashed into thinking they didn't need that gift, and formula was fine.

 Furthermore, I can attest to the fact, that breastfeeding continued to support their immunity, because both my kids get over any bug faster than anyone else I know.

Once, when my son was 3 years old, there was a particularly nasty virus going around, that was putting quite a few kids in the hospital with dehydration. My poor baby spiked a scarily high fever, and began throwing up repeatedly for hours. I called the after hours emergency number that our pediatrician used.

The nurse told me not to let him have anything by mouth, not even water, until we could get the vomiting stopped. When I asked if he could still nurse, she was delighted!

She said that breast milk was actually easier to digest than water, and it was the very best thing for him. He kept the breast milk down and did not have to go to the hospital. In fact, he got over it faster than most.

It's also really cool that both my kids remember nursing, because now they talk about the day when their children will get to nurse. This is exactly the way it should be. Breasts, to them, are about nurturing a baby. They won't escape the media, so they'll learn otherwise, but nothing can take this early association away from them.

I think another reason I was so easily convinced to nurse full term, is that when I was in the 5th grade, I attended a wonderful Montessori school. My Spanish teacher nursed her 2.5 year old in class, while she was teaching.  I'd never seen nursing before, so of course I was curious.

She answered my questions in a matter-of-fact way and everyone there treated it as completely normal. This exposure was one of the few times I ever saw nursing, yet it profoundly influenced my parenting choices, some 30 years later.

I think people's discomfort in seeing a child breastfeeding, stems from the fact, that in this society, breast have only been seen in the context of sexualized ads or porn. Then, when they see something as pure and innocent as a child, placed into that perceived "sexual" context, they feel repulsed, and alarmed.

They mistakenly believe that the nursing is perverted, when in fact, it is their own associations and feelings that have been perverted, by a culture that has only recently, (in terms of human history), abandoned the natural method of nourishing and nurturing their young.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Gifts from the Heart

Mother's Day!

My first gift for Mother's Day, was being allowed
to sleep in.

 Then my husband made a lovely breakfast, while my
daughter presented me with all the lovely cards and
 pictures she had made for me, both in school, and at
home. She's a crafty girl!

Later, my son woke up and informed me, that my gift
from him, was his promise to try and not argue with
his sister for one week. (Hey, at least he thought of

"Not, for the rest of your life?", I asked.
"Don't push it, Mom.", he said.

Happy Mother's Day!