Friday, January 30, 2009

~Praying fro Tuesday~

wow, I am so moved by this story. Illness, a sweet child, a family in need, a mothers pain, LOVE.

Heather over at The Extraordinary Ordinary is donating $1 for every comment made on her blog post We get by with a little help from our friends. Please drop by and comment....every little bit helps.

*update* Tuesday past away on January 30. Donations are still being collected to help her family through the challenging times that lie ahead.

~A Mothers Fears~ part 2

Fear had taken has a tendency to do that if we're not careful.

Never in my life have I EVER felt so horrific. Time seemed to be holding me in some kind of hammock, swaying me in and out...shifting my perspective without so much as a warning. I felt, for the first time, completely disconnected from the earth. Like I was some how walking in some kind of ethereal plane...not in a deep meditative kinds of way. In a bad dream you can't wake up from, falling but you never touch the ground kind of way.

I need to get grounded, but I felt disoriented.

After my first remedy dose I was able to eat again. I started with salad...all I wanted was salad. Slowly I added oatmeal, chicken and Spelt sourdough bread. I couldn't eat potatoes/pasta/rice/sugars/dairy. I couldn't eat cooked veggies. I didn't realize it but my body was detoxing. Big time. The things that came out of me....(I'll spare you the details) stunned me. I started drinking a whole food/greens/protein shake which really helped with my energy levels.

Another moth passed and I was given a new remedy by my homeopath. When I woke up the next day the nausea was gone! I was so happy!! I actually made lunch! When Dad-e-o came in he was so surprised. I was eating and smiling and had made him food! I could see in his eyes a kind of joy that made my smile broaden. I know how scared he had been. So afraid that he was going to lose me. And this simple act, this smile and prepared lunch was enough to shift his hope to a whole new place.

Something I should mention about the panic and anxiety attacks that I was having~ I didn't realize that's what it was. Having never experienced it before I only knew that it was horrible, but I didn't know why. I new I felt like I was dying but I had no idea how much of a role my fear played in that.

One day as I was driving to town (about 15 minutes away) listening to CBC radio. They were doing an interview with different medical professionals about anxiety. I was instantly draw in and listened with wrapped attention for the duration of the interview. My mind was whirling. Was that it? Was this the answer to one aspect of what I was experiencing?

I spent weeks pondering, mulling, steeping this information in my mind. Fear. It all came back to fear. This is when I remembered the conversation my daughter and I had had all those months before. What I fear is fear. Wow. Justifiably so, I thought, having now experienced such acute and overwhelming fear. Fear is a powerful thing. In the past 3 months every time I experienced pain and nausea I also experienced extreme fear.

I began, slowly, to understand that the fear was something that I could choose to let go of. In those moments when my body was hit with pain I could choose to let that translate into fear and then be thrown madly about on the sea of chaos, OR I could choose to realize that it was fear that made me feel so much worse and try to understand what my body was trying to tell me.

It turn out that my body was trying to tell me something rather specific. Over the next few years I would learn to listen. Every bit of pain, every wave of nausea, every ache or frightening flash of blood was a very clear message.

First of all, I realized what a huge roll stress plays in my health. If I over load my plate or do things that are not in harmony with who I AM, I become stressed and then I become ill. Now, you might be thinking to yourself, how can a homeschooling mother of 4 who makes everything from scratch avoid stress?


It's all about love. When love is the priority everything else seems so simple. We have learned to take the daily stresses of life with a grain of salt. We value our family unity above all else and realize how fickle the material things of this life are. (which is what tends to cause the most stress in our culture) so yeah, LOVE, baby!

Secondly, I came to understand the power of FOOD. You know the old saying "You are what you eat." It's true. The diet of the average north American is disgusting. Revolting even. The rates of cancer, obesity, diabetes, degenerative disease, depression, anxiety, ADHD, mental illness...these rates are both shocking and appalling. How is it that we have allowed this to happen? because the cheap, readily available food options taste good? It just doesn't equate.

I have always been a "healthy" eater. I've never eaten much junk food. I didn't drink pop or eat at fast food places frequently. I bought organic when I could afford it and ate a largely vegetarian diet with little processed food. But there was room for improvement. Apparently a LOT of room for improvement.

I began to pay attention to the way I felt and what I had eaten recently that might be a cause. Wow...after going through illness detox, my body messages were loud and clear. Everything I ate translated to either health and healing or illness and pain. Processed foods with preservatives/high fructose corn syrup/flavor enhancers/hydrogenated oils/artificial flavours (even ones claiming to be "natural")/artificial color and sweeteners- ALL made me sick. Now think about whats in your cupboard. Go on, read some labels. It is shocking to realize how many of the things we buy have these things in them. Now think about going out for dinner or catching a quick bite when your in a rush. Most of the convenient food options out there contain ALL these things.

So, whats a girl to do? Come shopping with cart: loaded with fresh produce, mostly organic (about half full), organic yogurt and soy yogurt (for my boys who can't have dairy), butter, organic soy milk, cream for Dad-e-o's organic whole bean coffee, organic tofu, organic tortilla chips (lightly slated), organic corn and rice cakes, salsa, sour cream, white cheddar cheese (sometimes feta or ricotta), organic salad dressing, olive oil, celtic sea salt, whole organic chicken or breasts, frozen organic veggies and blueberries, Organic sprouted grain bread, flour tortillas.

I take part in a organic food co-op where we buy bulk items (all organic) slow cooking oats, spelt and wheat flour, evaporated cane juice, popping corn, kamut pasta and spelt udon noodles, dried beans. I get my eggs from friends who have free range chickens. I make all of our baked good- cookies, muffins, cakes from scratch. I love to cook and make dinner every night (often with Dad-e-o). food has become sacred to me. By honoring it, choosing what we buy carefully, we, in turn, honour ourselves.

We don't spend money on eating out. We don't spend money on buying "munchies" or grabbing a coffee. We don't drink alcohol so there is no money going to that. What we do spend money on is groceries. It took a while for us to get into the rhythm of it...and to get used to the total of our grocery bill. But when the other option is to be sick it is VERY motivating!

So between figuring out the fear/stress factor and the food factor I began to heal myself with the help and support of the people in my life. It's been just over 4 years now. A few months ago my doctor suggested that we run a bunch of tests. He had been my doctor for 2 years (prenatal care) but I had never really told him my history. I finally transferred my file to him (all 50lbs of it, lol) and he, very respectfully, suggested that we cover all the basics, just to see. So, I found myself, yet again, getting vile upon vile of blood taken, going for ultrasounds and a colonoscopy, seeing specialists.

I get a phone call saying my results are in. I walk in to his office and he is grinning ear to ear. He goes on to tell me that what ever I'm doing I should keep doing. All my test have come back healthy and normal!! Blood tests that I was told would NEVER change, changed. I had a healthy pap for the first time in my life. My bowels, "beautiful" to quote the internologist.

I get goose bumps every time I think about it. He says to me, that he has never seen such a healthy, happy person and that I was blessed.

Yes, I am blessed.

Fear can sometimes be a catalyst for change.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

seven things.......hmmm

well, I was tagged by a loverly lady over at Dreams of Quill and Ink to play the "seven things about you" game. I'm not quite sure who to tag....

Anyway, my list.

1. I'm growing my hair out. For me this is a rather big deal.....manifesting the vision of the medieval goddess with curly tress that hang below her waist. You see, every time I have a baby I get this itch to hack it off. To somehow re-claim my image by doing something funky with my hair. I have succumbed to this urge after every baby EXCEPT Sweetie Boy. My hair now hangs down below my shoulder blades!! I'm getting there, I just need to fully embrace my stubborn side and keep going. That said, I have a hair appointment on Thursday. Just a trim...some long layers....keeping it fresh and alive whilst maintaining length. I can't wait!! (I get to go by myself, which is exciting in and of itself!!)

2. Dad-e-o and I decided to tattoo our wedding rings when we were married. Because we both play music and work with our hands neither of us ever wear rings.....not to mention we thought it was a pretty fantastic way to say "Forever"!

3.I am afraid of the dark....sometimes. Not always for some reason...haven't figured that one out yet. Actually, I have but thats a post all onits own.

4. I LOVE to sew!! I am in the process of making a pair of jeans from 2 pair that I didn't like....we shall see how it all turns out. I dream of one day making clothes by the rack full and selling to inspired people who like to express themselves through what they wear.

5. I am super "crunchy"....what ever that means. All I know is that whenever I read someones description of themselves and "crunchy" is present, usually we have a lot in common. I tend to do nearly everything differently then the general population, which I find liberating. I believe it makes it easier for me to dare to do somethings that others shy away from...I've never really gone with the "flow" and so I feel no need to join the flock o-sheep.

6. I love ancient bits from other lands. things drenched in history and rich culture. I guess this is why I feel so drawn to Tribal Belly Dance......the costuming is absolutely amazing!!

7. I use cloth menstrual pads and LOVE them!! I really think that every women should give them a guilt, soft comfort, no nasty toxins to taint our sacred places.

so, now the tagging part...actually, I don't have time to, if your reading this and you feel so inspired to write your own "super 7" list then please, consider yourself tagged!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Stand by Me

Okay, I promise that I will finish my "A Mothers Fears" story soon, BUT I had to show you all this beautiful video. I saw it posted by Nicky over at Rowan Family tree and it moved both Dad-e-o and I greatly. It is such an inspiration. A song that I have sung so many times and will continue to all of my life. Stand by Me....performed by people all over the world, together...evoking unity on oh so many levels.


Friday, January 23, 2009

~ A Mothers Fears~ part 1

As mama's I think it is part of our job to have all manner of odd and frightening scenario play through in our minds. I remember the first time I had a frightening/morbid thought~ That somehow my daughter would fly out of the stroller while I was stopped at the curb and get hit by a car. Actually, the visual was much more disturbing then that...all the fears of a new mama packed into one horrifying thought. In all reality it isn't very likely BUT it gave me an element of caution that might not have been there otherwise. And who's to say that that caution didn't save that babe on more then one occasion? Now imagine 11 years of fears. 4 babies. 4 children. All the fears that have translated into different cautions and preparedness.

Sometimes our fears can be a catalyst for change.

One sunny day about 4 and a half years ago, while driving into town with my children, Beena asked me a question.

"What are you afraid of mommy?"

I thought about it for a long time. At that point in my life I had let go of many of my "fears" and was in what I thought to be a much more trusting/positive/faithful place.

I answered "Fear. Fear is what I fear most."

It wasn't long after that that my earth was shaken. First Honey broke her elbow. A 1 year old in a cast is a sad thing indeed! We had vehicle problems. Then we experienced some fairly major family trauma during which I heard fear, real fear, in my husbands voice for the first time. There is still lingering pain from this...I wonder if it will ever heal.

Shortly afterwards I became ill.

Now, I guess the first thing you should understand is that I have struggled with illness all of my life. As a child I seemed to catch everything. As a teen I struggled with symptoms that I didn't understand, and being in a high stress situation (living on my own/working/going to school) from way to early on surly didn't help.

After the birth of my first child my symptoms worsened. I was in pain, exhausted, far to thin. My specialists wanted me to take all kinds of drugs and I was getting 10+ viles of blood taken every few months. I refused to take the prescribed medication. I had done enough research and had enough experience to know that my body reacted horribly to their medication. I would always get nearly every reaction known and be in more misery then when I began.

I told them that I would be taking a natural approach and began an intensive vitamin therapy regime. My health improved and Dad-e-o and I decided we would be open to having another child at this point. I was told that it was very likely I would be to high risk later on in life. After Mr. Bops birth I was healthier then I had ever been. I continued to take supplements and began to eat more and more organic whole foods. We began trying for baby number 3 (which took all of about 2 weeks) and I experienced my healthiest, most vibrant pregnancy yet. Honey was born at home in a swimming pool that we had set up in our living room with no complications. I recovered quickly and felt healthier then ever.

I had healed myself. Through healthy eating, an active lifestyle, loving support and a positive outlook I had done something that I was told was impossible and I was impowered by that.

and then I got sick.

It hit me hard. My body was rocked and my mind along with it. I panicked. How could this be happening? I was healed! what is going on! I could barely move for weeks.

I was so blessed to have my hubby working across the front lawn. He would make the kids breakfast and get them dressed. He would come in on his morning break and change diapers/get snacks. He would be in making lunch and back again at his afternoon break. After work he would make supper, read stories, put kids to bed, do laundry, tidy the house. He was my savior.

I began to see a homeopath after the first few weeks. I was able to eat again the day after the first dose of my remedy. We all breathed a sigh of relief. I hadn't been able to eat for far to long and had already lost nearly 30lbs. (did I mention I was thin to begin with?)

One of the things that I struggled with the most during this time was fear. I was experiencing panic attacks and anxiety for the first time in my life. I was so desperately afraid that this was never going to end. That I would never be able to parent my children. To play with them in the sunshine or cook dinner with them. To home school them. I was afraid I wouldn't be able to clean my own house, tend my own garden. I was afraid my husband would look at me and realize he'd made a horrible mistake and leave me.

Fear had taken has a tendency to do that if we're not careful.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

~Laughter is the Best Medicine~

He says I look beautiful.

Maybe its the sweaty, tousled hair, the rosy cheeks and shinning eyes.
Maybe its the vulnerability that illness brings.

He says I look sexy.

I smile.
He wraps his arms around me and kisses my sweaty forehead.
I laugh, hope he doesn't breathe in to deeply. Sweat gives off more then a shinning glow you know.

He says laughter is medicine.
He's right.
He is my Patch Adams and I already feel better.
Sure my breast is still inflamed, my feverish body is still exhausted, my head is pounding with an evil migraine that somehow always accompanies mastitis in my world.
But I am smiling.
My heart is whole and I feel lifted by what he gives me.
I can feel my body relaxing and I KNOW that if I can truly relax my body WILL heal.

He comes up beside me munching an apple.

"I know this sound cheesy" he says "but, I really do eat an apple a day."

Did I mention that he NEVER gets sick?

"Just you?"

I smile as the sun reflects on his juice splattered lips while he chews, grinning.

No....maybe an apple a week. What is this, hubby's right about everything day??

It is gloriously bright this morning.

I am smiling, as I reach for an apple.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Grosgrain: The Lunch Date Blouse GIVEAWAY!!!!

a gifted lady giving away beautiful gifts

Grosgrain: The Lunch Date Blouse GIVEAWAY!!!!

~I Need Africa more the Africa Needs Me~

This brings tears to my eyes and speaks a truth that is so very alive within me.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

~I am a human bassinet~

Sweetie Boy has been on me for nearly 4 days straight. Day and night. Waking ever half hour to cough and nurse. Wailing at the misery of it all.

Honey hasn't left the couch for 3 days. Her fever is running high and her cough brings tears to both our eyes.

This is when I need that extra set of arms that everyone's always talking about. One for each sweet child in need rather then only one set for the child who needs them most.

I am counting down the minutes until Dad-e-o gets home. Trying to decide whether I should go to dance tonight for a little bit of re-fueling mama time. Sweetie Boy is definitely on the upswing...and he has been nursing/napping on me for 3 hours now. Maybe he'll be alright to snuggle with Dad-e-o and read Grumpy Bird and Baby Beluga over and over. Honey will be in bed right after supper....hmmmm. But let us not forget that it's snowing, just to top it off. Maybe if it stops before dance I should take it as a sign. A mama-needs-to-get-outta-the-house-before-she-loses-her-mind sign.

Did I mention my bum is numb? oh, and you don't even want to see my kitchen. (down right disgusting)


well, Honeys fever just went up again. I switched her to Belladonna, a homeopathic remedy that seems to really grasp the picture of her illness. Crossing my fingers that it helps.

Sweetie Boy woke rather cheery and played for a few blessed minutes while I tended to Honey.

I guess there will be no dance tonight....ah well, next week.

Only minutes until Dad-e-o arrives on his valiant hero!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

~20 totally random things about me~

1. I yearn to live minimalistically....I would love to dwell in a yurt with my family with only the essentials, of course this includes instruments and art supplies.

2.I am allergic to horses, which is unfortunate as our darling Beena Loves to ride. The up side: we have discovered a breed of horse that is "hypoallergenic" so we're crossing our fingers that we can still realize our dream of horses in the pasture on our land.

3. The first time I sang in public I was 4. The song was called was rather prophetic, describing me so well.

"Wisdom, Wisdom make me strong,
Bring me joy when birds have lost their song.
Wisdom, Wisdom I love you more then gold.
All my heart will seek for you until I'm very old."

I sing this song with my children♥

4.I dream to record an album with my husband some day....there is magic in the music between us.

5.A friend once called me "the baby whisperer" and the thought made my soul sing.

6.For many years I was held captive by the fear of illness. I have been liberated from this fear which inspires me more then I can say.

7.Watching our children grow gives me more joy then I though possible.

8.I love to cry. Tears heal me and I find so much more is released then the moment seems to call for. My tears often make my hubby smile for they are rarely tears of sadness.

9.I feel blessed to have the love that I do....overflowing and ever fruitful

10. Dancing frees my soul and re-balances my mind.

11.I LOVE to cook....especially while listening to something fantastic and dancing all the while.

12. It's true, I'm a health nut.

13. I am very opinionated.

14.I am learning when to speak and when to listen.

15. I love unconditionally, with all of my being.

16.I believe that the moon cycles of a women are sacred. There is a power within the celebration of our womanhood in its completeness and I truly believe that so much of the world will change when the pain that lays within our centers is healed.

17.I love oatmeal.

18.I wonder if my dream of being a midwife will ever manifest...I wonder if I want it to

19.adoption has been a dream my whole life. Recently I have come to realize that the time is coming heart has already left on its journey across the sea.

20.I see a harp in my future.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

~Our Natural Rhythm~

I am excited!

There is so much to do. So much to learn.

We had decided that this year we would take the typical 2 week Christmas break that the schools take. Allow extra time for crafts and general festiveness. The problem with that was that I ended up with this odd sense of I somehow lost my purpose. Silly, I know. You'd think one would welcome a break from crazy busy land BUT I am realizing that something is shifting in me. I thrive on crazy busy land. I am inspired by everything that I have to get done in a day. I rarely ever feel idle. I nearly always feel productive. AND because I have chosen to live my life inspired, my days are filled with tasks that I enjoy. (well, except cleaning the bathroom.....and a little laundry elf would be really helpful)

There is a wonderful rythym to the way our year flows. In September, when the weather shifts and the children spend more time indoors, we begin doing morning lessons. Our lessons are based on what our children want to learn so we are all eager to journey through.

During the depths of winter, which are rather long and very cold here, we craft more, invent more, bake more. These things naturally fill the space that is created by the cold temperatures and need to be indoors.

When spring arrive we spill outdoors, spending hours walking, preparing the soil for planting, collecting...watching the earth wake up. By the time April draws to a close we are done our morning lessons for the year. We have completed that same amount of "learning weeks" as public schools (36 weeks), but having taken no holiday weeks we are officially "done" the 3rd week of April.

Summer is spent barefoot. Hours drift by in the garden. Habitats are built for little critters. Fairies can be seen climbing trees and bouncing happily on the trampoline. We hike and bike, swim and build sand sculptures, harvest and preserve. Curiosity is every child's innate gift and we are all educated by the fruits of the season and explorations that are brought to us on the warm breeze.

So I've realized something. I don't need to take a "break" from "schooling". We don't "school", we LIVE!! Oh, I really do feel so blessed by this affirmation. I guess one could say that by taking a "break" I really gave myself a gift. The gift of understanding and of acceptance that we flow in a way that is natural to us. That is right for us. A way that works so well for our family that we are filled by our very existence.

Monday, January 5, 2009

~winter images~

Hunting for and finding the perfect tree to thin from an over crowded cluster

Sweetie Boy freshly awake from nap-land.
The LOVES of my life!

Getting outside for a few minutes of fresh air in the brrrrr cold (-25)

Honey in the sunshine and our Winter Wonderland

Honey getting ready for her first dance performance.

Sweetie Boy trying to walk in cute!

Our Christmas tree...all 12.5 feet of it. (it didn't look that big outside!)

Sweeite Boy and his boat...his new favorite thing.


Holly, the doll I made for Honey.

Blessed Mama