Saturday, May 13, 2006

What's your poison?

Brew of the day: Lemon tea

We’re such funny creatures, us humans. Despite inhabiting a living and potentially vibrant vehicle, most us manage to inject or absorb toxic matter and expect to keep thriving. If we did this to lab rats we wouldn’t be surprised to see them wither away.

Be honest, how do you start your day? Do you turn on the radio for the latest news? Do you then drown the murder of a baby or a politician’s sex scandal or increased bank rates with ‘real’ coffee? And what about when you step into the shower? Does your shampoo contain SLSs? What about your partner or children? Do you treat them as Royalty or yell at them as if they’re the enemy? And how do you LET them treat you? What poisons are you putting into your body? Poison wears various disguises and can affect us on many different levels.

This week Cumbria had two glorious days of what is more than likely bound to be our British summer! I’m a little undisciplined when it comes to the sun...just can’t get enough of the warmth and gloriously light feeling that comes with being outside for hours on end. After months of being mostly indoors and wearing head to toe clothing, it is somewhat of a shock for my bare, anemic-looking skin to see daylight. I ask my girls to wear hats or bandanas and to alternate between being in the sun and in the shade. They build up their tolerance to the sun on a daily level in a safe, natural way. THE SUN IS NOT BAD FOR US.

I don’t ever put sunscreen on them even the so called ‘natural’ ones (gasp!!! Cries of “BAD MOTHER”). If people were honest though, they’d realise we don’t have a sunscreen deficiency and therefore don’t need to ‘cure’ our skin with such poisons. I believe that sunscreens are contributing greatly to skin cancer rates. Ever read the ingredients?
Years ago, I never left home without a pair of sunglasses. They were a mandatory accessory. Once I began a conscious, holistic journey (which began before I had children) I left behind my sunglasses. It was about as hard as giving up my 12 cups a day of coffee!

Sunglasses, by their very nature, stop light getting to our eyes. The way our skin reacts to sunlight is determined by the brain receiving messages from our eyes! When the eyes give a false reading, so to speak, the body isn’t able to ‘accommodate’ the sunshine on the skin in the same way. It simply can’t tell you when you’ve been in the sun too long. So, if you’ve got a pair of ‘cute’ sunglasses for your child, designed to make him/her look like a celebrity, you might like to think again. And don’t forget to wean yourself from them too!

Didn’t think there would be a blog today as I’ve had such a quiet week, despite finishing the first proofs of the summer issue of The Mother magazine. At night I snuggle up with the girls in bed, their pillows sprinkled with essential oil of Lavender, and read them a chapter or two from a book. They’re brilliant readers and don’t ‘need’ me to read at all but seem to love having the time and attention last thing at night. By about lunch time each day they’re asking if I’ll be reading at bed time. These moments are so, so precious and nourish me as much as them.

By day, my greatest pleasures this week have involved watching the girls playing at the bottom of the garden. Mud pies to feed the world! They gather up little flowers from in the grasses and set a vase on the table under the shade of the plum trees. So long Bethany and Eliza are topped up with real food every few hours, this sort of play goes on all day. A few times this week, when they’ve migrated to the front garden, which is the size of a postage stamp but a great sun trap, people wandering through the village have said to them, “Shouldn’t you be in school?”

Hasn’t anyone heard of home education?

It must be so threatening to adults when they see children of this age (10 & 8) sitting down painting pictures in the sunshine or playing hopscotch. I mean, heaven forbid, we need to CONTROL kids…control their body functions, eating times, the way they think, how much FUN they're allowed to have. What will become of them if they don’t have this external ‘discipline’ enforced?

“There’s a perfectly good school in the next village, why can’t they go there?” I have statements like this hissed at me by people living rather close by. It strikes me that the majority of people have been so ‘poisoned’ by the idea of free thinking and free living that when they see it being lived out by others it challenges every idea they have and their only response is to, er, spit!

I heard that there is now a tv channel dedicated to children between the ages of 6 months and three years of wonderful, now mummy doesn't even have to be constrained with her little one!! Some of the compliments about this new station came from mums saying that it means they can put their baby down to watch 'educational' television while they go and do the housework. Educational television? Poison, more like. Still, better to get them used to toxins early so they're prepared for the onslaught later on.

No one else is going to say it, so I will. WHY BOTHER HAVING CHILDREN?

Had a little chuckle to myself during the week. I was out of rice milk so opted to pop down to our local Co-op for soya milk rather than drive 8 miles to town. The lady in the queue before me was undoubtedly a dairy farmer’s wife in her 60s. She pointed at the soya milk and gruffly asked me if someone in my family had an allergy. When I said no, she puffed her tall body up even more and very aggressively asked why we were drinking it then. I could have very happily gone into the fact that the milk from a cow was for her calf but knew that could have set off a cardiac arrest given her current state, so simply said we didn’t like the taste of cow’s milk. Her reaction wasn’t pretty. Ho hum!

I don’t honestly have great expectations of what I will offer my children on an academic level. That will just evolve when they are ready. What I do hope is to inspire both of them to honour and nurture their body, mind and soul. To learn that nothing can come from corn, but corn, and that nothing can come from nettles but nettles.

I’ve caught myself feeling gloomy and rather impotent at the state of the world lately…ready to dig my own grave. My natural state of being is one of positivity and optimism and in resurrecting this, I’m reminded, daily, to teach Bethany and Eliza about Building Castles alongside their mud pies! Our dreams are vital in life and we shouldn’t shrink away from aspiring to great things despite the situations we might find ourselves in at any given time.

Two men looked out from prison bars
One saw mud, one saw stars.

If I can, during the course of their childhood, show them, by word and example, that first thing in the morning and last thing at night, their minds are most impressionable and to use this time wisely (eg. for meditation or affirmations), I will have helped set them on a good course for the rest of their lives.

As a long term student of New Thought and metaphysics, I’ve learnt (especially through the painful times!) that each of us creates our world by our beliefs and feelings. When things go pear-shaped it is so easy to not want to take responsibility, so easy to cast blame. Self-denial is probably the worst poison of all as it doesn’t allow us to re-script our lives. Whatever shape and flavour this day holds is the result of what we have thought of in the past. Quite literally, we get what we think about all day long. If you’re the blushing sort, this can be quite embarrassing as your life is an out-picture of your internal thinking. Everyone can see what is going on inside!

There are many ways we can monitor our poison levels. A lot of it comes down to awareness and perhaps taking an inventory. Food, drink and environmental toxins are fairly obvious to pinpoint. And yet, things like negative news, the stress of rush hour traffic, negative people or destructive relationships are just as damning to the system. In order to live an authentic and holistic life, bit by bit we need to cleanse our system of poisons if we are to view our world through ‘clean’ glasses….or even better, without any glasses at all!

Have a truly wonderful and health-affirming week
~ Veronika ~


HugoMummy said...

Hi Veronika,
Another great post. Just wanted to say that my poison is SUGAR. I am having ongoing candida trouble (obvious sign- over a year of cracked nipples whilst breastfeeding my son, arrrgh)- I have a secret weapon to fight the problem on my skin (probiotics) but why I have not been able to give up sugar is beyond me. I am a complete addict. Needless to say I am pretty sure my 1y9m son has inherited it from me (ate a lot whilst pregnant too).

Please tell me where I can read how bad it is for me- I need a kick up the arse! I live in Japan for goodness sake, I could not have easier access to undairy, unsugary, unwheaty, delicious food! I would love to have another baby one day, but I have promised myself not until I am a healthier and calmer and more mindful human being.

Thank you for listening. Love reading your blog and looking forward to the next issue of TM- oh s**t, I have to renew my subscription...!!
Take care. Lots of love to you and your family. Emma xx
PS. Your last blog about honesty has made me think a lot about how I avoid being honest in very close relationships in my own life- thanks again xxx

baker st jones said...

i was thinking about these issues just this week, esp the idea you mentioned in your final paragraph, about relationships that are damaging to you being the person you were meant to be. it can take years to recognise their negative impact...consciously, that is

Linda said...

Hi! What an interesting post. I often think about what is making me feel depressed and it is sometimes hard to actually find the major source of negativity.

Veronika said...

Emma...if you do a google search on the damage sugar does to the human body, you'll have enough reading for years :-)

Humans are creatures of habit, for better or worse..i found literally NOT buying sugar and having it in the house the most helpful thing we did.

We're blessed to live in a village without a shop so there is no temptation to pop out for a chocolate bar :-)