Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Empowered Mothering

Today's Cuppa: Pure, living water (aka breast milk direct from source)

We are at our most empowered, as mothers, when we do not rely on modern technology to fulfil our role. This has been brought home to me many times this week when observing and listening to the many people caught up in the flooding of central and southern England. There are countless babies at the mercy of other people who are bringing in clean water so parents can make up counterfeit milk.

My heart absolutely goes out to everyone devastated by these floods…as much as to the 200 people who died in floods in China this week, and the 500 who've died in the Hungarian heat wave.

It does remind me, though, just how far removed we are from our natural mothering instincts that young babies aren't even drinking from their mother ~ someone who could offer them 'living water' on tap regardless of external influences.

We think we can replace breast milk with something as inadequate as a static 'formula'. We even have the cheek to call it 'milk', as if we were offering our babies the elixir of life! Collectively, we have allowed our culture to hypnotise us into thinking breastfeeding is an embarrassment, something reserved for primitives.

Hygeia Halfmoon, author of Primal mothering in a modern world, recalls being evacuated in Hawaii after a natural disaster ( I can't recall if it was an earthquake or erupting volcano) and sitting in a large centre with all the evacuees. All the babies were screaming from hunger as there was no access to formula or fresh water. She was the only one breastfeeding. Can you imagine how heartbreaking it would be to know you could feed a number of other children from your breasts, had they not lost their sucking reflex by being introduced to bottle-feeding?

Empowered mothering doesn't rely on man-made products, be they drink, food, sleeping prisons, monitors, bottles and so on. Your body, mind and heart contain everything needed to parent beautifully and with integrity for the reciprocal bonding of mother and child.

1 comment:

Phoenix said...

Your post choles me up. Yet I am so glad you wrote it.

The mental image of the hungry babies and the lone breastfeeding mother is a haunting one.

The truth and wisdom in the last paragraph makes me wish I could move well away into the countryside, away from mass polution, traffic, gadgets and 'must haves' and live as nature intended, with babes in arms and children running free, playing and exploring and learning for themselves.
My rejection of dummies, prams, bottles, cots (my almost-18month co sleeps with us too), disposable nappies, processed baby foods etc, goes a little way towards.
One day I hope I get my dream.

Thank you for writing this.