THE COMPLEAT MOTHER NEWSLETTER MOTHER’S DAY – MAY 11, 2003
"The most important thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother" - David O'Kay
//-- Mother to Mother --//
//-- Multiply (PART 1) --//
//-- Multiply (PART 2) --//
//-- Litters --//
//-- Tea Talk --//
//-- Greg’ Notes--//
//-- Mother to Mother --//
My Uncle Emit died after bypass surgery. He was my mother’s only brother, a somewhat eccentric artist who knew fame only came to great artists after they are gone. He always showed up at family gatherings with his contribution, a jug of Mogen David wine.
Last week my dear mother-in-law passed away at home after a winter of cancer which never touched her heart. Several years ago, when Riva and Alyson were all grown up, both in their early twenties, Dorothy told me I had done a good job raising them, “They are both such nice young women.” Agreeing, I thanked her.
I knew years earlier, she’d thought I was a hopelessly permissive mother. She loved her grandchildren, and they loved her.
I confess, it was not me who did a good job with them, it was they who did a good job with me (and they aren’t done yet.) They told me exactly what they needed and I moved heaven and earth for them. Twenty-six years ago I learned babies are born knowing everything they need to know and it is their responsibility to favor their parents with this knowledge. All we have to do is show up and pay attention.
Our nineteen year-old orange tabby cat died too. I’d wanted to comfort Tiger when he was dying, but the feeling I shouldn’t disturb him covered my fear that I was too weak or too sad to be with him in his last hours. Weeks later I read in Desmond Morris’ Catlore, even tame cats prefer to die alone. Peace.
Tiger’s constant companion and grooming partner, Ziggy had the good sense to leave him in his peace and I reluctantly, gratefully, had done the same.
This has been an exceptionally sad, long, sometimes bone-chilling cold, winter. The next issue will be prepared outside on the picnic table, my favorite place to work in the spring, summer and fall.
//-- MULTIPLY --//
Robert Mendelsohn in his book, Confessions of a Medical Heretic, claims the most political thing one can do is to fall in love, get married and birth the babies at home.
The question I was most asked while expecting my third child was, "Are you done?" Even some of my Christian friends assumed the only reason I was having a third child was because I had two daughters and we wanted a son. Whenever our family went out in public while I was pregnant with our fourth, we were greeted with stupefied stares.
Now when I am asked, "Are you done?" I usually reply, "Oh, I'd like to have 8 or 9 more children." Silence.
"Why are billionaires like Ted Turner so interested in population control?" In giving a billion dollars to the UN population fund he has exemplified his antagonism towards parents who desire large families. Why does he care? Is he afraid there won’t be enough food for him?
Lack of food in our world is caused by ignorance, not overpopulation. If we took all of the prime land that is used to grow tobacco, coffee, drugs, chocolate (all of the alkaloid plants that wreck so much havoc on our bodies), as well as the grains used to make alcohol and fatten cattle, and used that land to grow grains, beans, seeds, fruits, vegetables and herbs for healing, we could, in one generation, change our farmland from fields of death and disease to crops which promote abundant health.
I have nothing personal against those who eat meat, drink coffee or smoke cigarettes. I simply believe that it is not little babies who are the cause of starvation and disease in our world. Let's be honest about where the problem lies.
Monsanto, the huge agricultural company, wants to change the face of farming. The terminator seed is potentially dangerous to the ecosystem, yet an agricultural monopoly is all they seem to care about.
A century of chemical farming has caused tremendous amounts of disease. Those scientists who believe they can improve on what God has provided for food are risking the gentle ebb and flow that is the plant world.
I have learned that organic foods and natural healing offer some extremely valuable tools that enable the family to heal. Babies are not the problem, ignorance is.
Ted Turner, why don’t you offer your billions to the organic farmers of the world?
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Mission Statement - "Healthy Families Make A Healthy World!"
Web site address – http://www.naturalfamilyco.com
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//-- MULTIPLY (PART 2) –-//
Misused reproductive organs have a tendency to fill with cancer, shrivel up and fall off the body. Those who misuse their procreative powers in sinful ways have the most guilt, depression, cancer and surgery. This is not some plot against those who reject God’s laws for happiness; it is simply the way the body works.
The happiest couples on the earth are those who save their virtue for marriage, honor their marital vows with complete fidelity, and claim the fullness of their reproductive powers by quietly birthing their own babies in the sanctity and peace of their own homes. “Happiness in family life is most likely achieved and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work and wholesome recreational activities.” (Proclamation on the Family)
When parents relax and just let the babies come naturally, (exclusive breast - feeding has given us 15 months of infertility after each of our last three babies!), the ideal of replenishing the earth is realized.
A great prophet has said that Motherhood lies at the foundation of happiness in the home, and of prosperity in the nation...He added that there can be no lasting happiness separate and apart from the home, and every effort made to sanctify and preserve its influence is uplifting to those who toil and sacrifice for its establishment... There is no happiness without service, and there is no service greater than that which converts the home into a divine institution and which promotes and preserves family life.
I grew up in a home where Mother was always pregnant and nursing. The oldest girl in a family of eight children, I know the joys of having many brothers and sisters to share my life with, a loving nurturing stay at home mother, and a kind and generous Father. I have always told people that I was going to have twelve children when I grew up. As I entered into my dating years, I quickly realized that most men were not interested in having that many children. I married my husband because he was the first man I dated who didn’t RUN when I mentioned this desire. As we have struggled and learned how to be parents together, I have been so grateful to be married to a man who loves our children with all his heart.
I meet so many spiritual women who would love to have more children, but the husbands shy away from the expenses involved in raising a large family. What these men don’t realize is that having children in actually very inexpensive. It is the doctor bills, the baby formula, the plastic diapers, the name brand clothing, the junk food, the day care and the schooling that is expensive.
I figure by the time we finish raising our children holistically we will have spent about as much raising our brood as a two income family spends in raising one mainstream child. We rarely go to a medical doctor (usually just the E.R. for emergency care.) We buy most of our clothing at thrift stores. Second hand toys, shoes, and washing our own cloth diapers save thousands. Breast - feeding saves about two thousand per child. I stay home, so we don’t have day care costs. We drive one beat up second hand mini van, and live in a small house. We believe that if our children have the ability to read and write well and excel in math they will be better educated than 50% of the population. Internet schools and universities will greatly reduce college costs for families and by the time we are finished our children will be healthy, educated, alive, (I think these recent school shootings are the tip of an iceberg of violence in the public schools) and ready to marry and start their own families. Which is what this whole business is all about...grandchildren!
Fathers, what you need to realize is that home life can be done very inexpensively and happily on one income and if the desire is to have many children, it can be done!
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//-- Quotes --//
"My Mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw. I attribute all my success in my life to the moral, intellectual, and physical education I received from her" - George Washington
"Of all the rights of women, the greatest is to be a mother" - Lin Yutang
"The Mother's heart is the child's schoolroom" - Henry Ward Beecher
I have yet to hear a man ask for advice on how to combine marriage and a career.
- Gloria Steinem –
"People need to understand that when they're deciding between breastmilk and formula, they're not deciding between Coke and Pepsi...They're choosing between a live, pure substance and a dead substance made with the cheapest oils available."
- lactation consultant Chele Marmet
//-- Litters --//
I first heard of Catherine’s passing on September 14, 2002. A friend who had the privilege of meeting Catherine in person informed me. I went hom, logged onto the website and started reading the tributes. Never mind preparing dinner – I just sat and cried. Compleat Mother has encouraged me so much in the past five years. It has helped me clarify my decisions and options as I raise my daughter. We’ve trimmed subscriptions to many magazines to save money since we’re living on one income so I can stay home. However, I told my husband that this is one subscription I won’t cut!
Keep up the good word. This voice is too important to be silent.
Dawn Burke, Suwance, Georgia
I picked up my first ever copy (of the Mother) at a bookshop in Chicago called “Women and Children First.” Being new to the USA, I was thrilled at last to settle down, chat and nurse with a bunch of like-minded breastfeeding women. I literally read it from cover to cover, every single word. The next day I took out a two year subscription and excitedly telling my two friends who have nursed for over a year, that I had at last found some “radical breastfeeding literature!” I will be passing on my Mothers, for sure.
Kim Richardson, Chicago, Illinois
What a joy it was to read my first Mother – it felt like coming “home.” It is sometimes so difficult to be the “unusual” one in my community. However, I am standing tall and proud, continuing to breastfeed my 16 month old everywhere and anywhere I can, sharing sleep and every moment I can with this precious little boy. He was delivered by cesarean after a traumatic, failed induction and much medical “meddling.” And still nursing, after all the bad advice, pacifiers and formula in my 5 day hospital stay. If I could convince my husband, I would have the next via homebirth in a second. I am doing the only other option I can at this moment, changing my care to a nurse midwife group that attends hospital births, and hoping to still convert my husband to see the light, so to speak. I know what my body is built for, and I carry in my heart and center the truth, that I can birth another without interference. Thank you Mother for giving me the strength and whispering into my soul.
JulieTraynor, Little Silver, New Jersey
Still nursing at age 47, a three year old. What a joy. Gotta try the tea.
Susan Oviatt, Grand Junction, Colorado
Please send me a shipment of raspberry leaf tea as soon as possible. I am nearly 8 months pregnant and in need!
Heather Rountree, Carmel, California
Send some tea, and please rush. I only have a few weeks before delivery and I am out.
Renee Klein, Algonquin, Illinois
ORDER YOUR TEA ON OUR WEBSITE! http://www.compleatmother.com/tea_company.htm
//-- Greg’ Notes--//
My mother passed on a few years ago. I would give a whole lot of my possessions if I could just sit and talk with her again for just a short time. Oh the questions I’ve come up with since her passing!
Her name is Elayne. She birthed ten children (I am the oldest). She was a feisty Irish gal, always quick with the verbal quip and a big smile. She possessed a formidable sense of humor and I most remember us laughing very loudly around the kitchen table at dinnertime.
There is a difficulty between mothers and offspring. Can we ever separate ourselves as a child and become more like a friend to our mothers?
Please do yourselves a favor and sit down with your mother this year. Pretend that you might never see her again. Search your soul for those questions which you have always wanted answered. Ask them.
"Regret for the things we did can be tempered by time; it is regret for things we did not do that is inconsolable." - Sydney J. Harris
"I'm Made of Mama's Milk" - The Breastfeeding Book for Children. available at http://www.maryolsenbooks.com/
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