Hello... long time no post! Can you guess why? I've been caught up in the most fun, most immersive whirlwind I've ever experienced... being Cedar's mother. I've often had the thought of posting some kind of blog about some aspect of parenting, and then I think about all the other things I just HAVE to say, and it seems so overwhelming! He's napping right now. So I'm going to start this blog and see where it goes... short blogs are fine too, even if I really feel like writing a 200-page book about this past year... :)
Okay, I'll start with some updates. Cedar's FIRST BIRTHDAY is in 10 days! How did THAT happen?!? Staying home with him, committed to being present nearly all the time with his process of development and discovery, I often find myself in a place of timelessness, where hours and days go by as one moment. My biggest joy and delight is observing and relating with Cedar as his true nature shines through more and more every day, and how his unique nature of being interacts with an ever increasingly wide variety of the things and other beings existing in this world. He astonishes me. I completely adore him. He is strong, expressive, bold, totally gorgeous and sweet, very smart and focused, and highly capable of accomplishing anything he sets his mind to (very quickly).
He is walking/running all over the place now, climbing stairs (among many other things), and even proficiently navigating the uneven terrain of nature, barefoot! (he has never worn shoes, for optimal foot development) ... He has long, wavy blonde hair (the most hair I've ever seen on a baby his age!), and tan, healthy, sun-kissed skin. He has excellent posture and muscle tone, and the perfect amount of baby chub to fuel his intensely active lifestyle :) He has 4 huge, glistening white teeth that he loves to show off with big grins... and I think he's growing some more right now -- All signs point to YES on that one! He has a strong voice and very clearly communicates his specific desires, even with his very small repertoire of "english words" (just mama and dada/daddy so far, with hints of other words coming soon).
He is still mostly breastfed... maybe 90% of his nourishment comes from my milk, the rest of it from his "experiments" with food. The way I view his nourishment at this point is: breastmilk is for nutrients (and connection), and any other food is for practice (grasping and chewing) and experience (tastes and textures). At this point, there is no way any other food can come close to my breastmilk in terms of full nourishment for his specific stages of development. I eat nutrient-dense foods and drink nutrient-dense liquids every day, at every meal. Maybe if someone wasn't doing that, their baby would need other foods. I am doing it with great joy and purpose, for him and for myself. I drink a quart of nettle leaf infusion every day (I actually desire that much nearly every day!), and raw superfoods of various types are a big part of my food choices at this point. I'm also enjoying local organic in-season veggies (currently cucumbers and tomatoes, YUM!), pears from the pear tree in our yard, avocados, homemade sprouted rye bread (lightly baked, essene-style), homemade herbal lacto-fermented sodas (I make my own root beer, ginger ale, and a bunch more unique recipes), soft-boiled pastured/free-range eggs, local raw grass-fed butter, adaptogenic herbal teas, and sometimes sprouted, steamed quinoa. And superfood chia drinks. And especially my CHOCOLATE BALLS!! ..a cosmic concoction of raw cacao, a big variety of superfoods and adaptogenic herbs, with coconut oil and a small amount of raw honey.
I chose to list my current favorite foods to expand your idea about what's possible as nourishment during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Of course, the specifics will be different for everyone... and I encourage you to try any or all of the foods I mentioned above, and see what you really love and feel nourished from!
Another popular topic for many parents I talk with... Elimination Communication! When people find out that Cedar has never worn a diaper, and is usually naked (except when we go out, he wears pants or underwear), they wonder how it works! It's been a fulfilling journey of empowerment and communication. We still have plenty of "misses", and that means nothing to me when I feel the satisfaction of seeing him really GET something regarding his elimination... for example, if he pees on the floor, I immediately get a cloth and wipe it up. He sees me do this all the time, so now he usually does it before me! He pees, and if there's a cloth close by, he'll start to wipe it up on his own! We usually go outside on the front porch when I see his "poop signals"; he does it out there and I wash it away with the hose. Well, just today he started squatting/focusing/"pushing", and I asked him if he was pooping, and he immediately walked to the front door to go outside! He has yet to have interest in peeing/pooping in his little potty, but he's starting to make the connection, and I think one of these days I'll find him going in his potty all by himself! The great thing about EC is it encourages a baby to remain aware of their functions of elimination, which they are aware of from birth, but usually taught to ignore by sitting around in wet/poopy diapers for too long... then they have to re-learn later, during "potty training". No need to potty train! Just as babies innately know when they're hungry from the day they're born, they also are aware of their need to eliminate, just as much as adults are. Babies are amazing!
Another thing I desire to talk about, because it's something we did that was different than anyone else I've met so far: we actually didn't take him anywhere in a car until he was over 8 months! Early on, I felt so content staying home with him, and he seemed like in a way he was still "gestating" and was still so sensitive and open to subtle energies (some say there is an "external gestation" period of nine months after birth, and also that a baby's chakras take 3 months to actually seal up!), and I felt inspired to keep him in the "Space of Love" we created for him until I felt an intuitive signal that he was ready to venture beyond. It certainly made it easier that we live on 5 acres of land, so have plenty of SPACE to explore outside... and also that my parents eventually moved next door to us, on 10 acres of beautiful nature! Somewhere around 8 months, I started feeling the desire personally to participate in more away-from-home activities, and at that point Cedar seemed so physically and emotionally mature, and SECURE, and thirsty for as much adventure as possible! So we started taking him to our local farmers market every weekend. Just this past week, Cedar & Isaac & I spent 5 nights at a hotel for the amazingly awesome Rethinking Everything conference. This was a WAY new experience for Cedar, and he loved it! So, waiting to take him into a car didn't have any drawbacks, and only benefits, as I see it. That may be one reason he developed so quickly in his physical abilities... because he had endless opportunity to practice all day long, with no sitting and waiting in carseats.
Whether or not you resonate personally with the choices we made regarding our baby and cars, I desired to present it as an option, to empower new parents with additional possibilities for raising their babies. If my words speak to you in an inspiring way (about anything I did/am doing), that's wonderful, and if you resonate with something else, you will still know of these things as options, maybe to share with other people you know!
Wow, this blog has been satisfyingly long, and I've talked about most of the things I've thought so much about and feel so important to me. Cedar must be glad I'm doing this, since he's still napping! ;) I'm sure I will think of quite a few more things I just HAVE to say, and this is a nice healthy chunk of food for thought, for now!