Monday, October 27, 2008

the good mother

What is the good mother? What does she look like? Does she make perfect potato salad? Does she go to the gym reclaiming her "pre-pregnancy" body? Does she know how to dress just right, never looking like a Mom? Does she keep her home beautiful, her children happy, her husband content? Does she speak calmly to her children, never raising her voice? Does she work outside of the home? Does she stay at home? Is she well read, well educated, well trained to do her job? Does she make it look easy? Was she born with the gift of mothering or is she still trying to figure out what that is? Does she let her kids play only with wooden toys, eat only organic food, drive only in a Bio Diesel fueled car? Does she educate her children on their responsibility in this world to save the earth? Does she forbid bananas? Does she breastfeed? Does she only let her children drink out of stainless steal water bottles? Does she go to every parent meeting, ready to volunteer for yet another bake sale? Does she make perfect brownies? Does her dedication to her children manifest itself in the way her children always say "please" and "thank you"? Is she Mary Poppins with a magic carpet bag full of glitter and glue and a teaspoon of sugar to make the medicine go down?

Or....does she get up everyday intending this day to be great, hoping it to be better than the last. Does she put on the clothes that make her feel good, even if they are cozy pants? Does she scarf down breakfast as she is shoving her kids into their muddy buddies, hoping not to be late for school once again? Does she make Highliner fish sticks and fries for dinner so that she didn't have to deal with the baby going through the recycling box sucking on salmon tins just so she could make a balanced meal? Does she yell at her kids, even though she said she would never do it again and apologize to them, and herself, at the end of the day? Does she let the dishes go, the laundry pile up, the floors unswept so she can take her kids outside and spend some time with them? Does she skip out of bake sales, craft fairs and parent meetings so that she can veg out in front of a movie and forget the day? Does she cry? Does she ask for help when she feels like walking out the door to look for the life she thinks she would be more qualified for? Does she feel guilty for not doing enough, saying enough, thinking enough? Does she lose herself in her children only to find that she has in fact become lost?

Maybe she is some, or none or all of these things. Maybe the good mother does her best, whatever that is for her that day. Maybe the good mother is the one who is gentle with herself. I don't know. Today I felt like if I had hired myself to do my job, I would have fired myself 6 months ago. I do my best and still I feel like I come up short most days. I cleaned the house, made lunch, read stories, even took the kids for a hike up a local mountain, by 4:00pm, I was done. Near tears, I called my husband for help lamenting never being given the mother gene, the one that I dream other mothers have that make them love all the things that come with being a mum. He came inside, gave me a hug and rescued me, I love him so much.

The good mother is such a powerful idea in our culture, with so much value, so much worth. We all think it means something different so we can never possibly measure up to someone else's idea. What is the good mother?

Friday, October 24, 2008


When I was little, every year my dad would take me to Goldstream park to see the salmon run. Now that I live on the island again, it's my turn to take my kids. There is something about this place that I love. Maybe it's the huge trees, the sound of the eagles, the way the stream winds it's way through the forest or the nature house that reminds me of the 70's in it's simple way of engaging childrens interests. Or maybe its the way that it seems entirely possible that the gnomies live there, under the twisty roots of an old tree as my son was so convinced of yesterday. And although we didn't see many salmon, I, along with my kids agree, this place is magic.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

mama's good milk

A dear friend of mine gave birth to a beautiful baby girl in the early summer. Despite weeks of struggling with breastfeeding, she found great support and is now successfully breastfeeding her little one and so proud of it. It's amazing to hear her talk of her experience and how she feels as a mother and the beautiful bond between herself and her daughter.

Seeing my friend nurture her baby and not feeling shy about feeding her in public, reminds me what a privilege it is to be able to breastfeed our babies. It also reminds me of how essential good, up to date, support is in those early weeks and how for many women it can make or break a breastfeeding relationship with their babies.

We say to breastfeed anytime, anywhere. Well this is my good friend (who is an amazing mother) breastfeeding her baby in the Saxon Switzerland in Germany. What an amazing photo!

This is another picture taken of her and her little one last weekend at Elk Lake. I am so proud of my friend, it took a lot of courage and determination for her to breastfeed her baby and now she does it with such ease.

If you need breastfeeding support or would like to find out more about the benefits of breastfeeding check out: or contact me at:

Monday, October 13, 2008


Happy Thanksgiving everyone. It's funny, the older I get the more thankful I become. This year I am so thankful for my beautiful children and amazing husband, our beautiful home that we have now been living in for one year, the three nights of sleep that I have gotten since my husband has been taking care of the baby in the night, my amazing job (it really doesn't feel like work for me), that we always have good food on the table, the list is endless. It's interesting how when we shift our thinking to living in abundance we realise just how much we really have. I hope this was a wonderful holiday for all of you, we all have so much to be thankful for.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

fim event

This Sunday, October 5th at the Duncan Garage Showroom, I am hosting a benefit screening of "What Babies Want." This is an eye opening film looking at the new information that we now have regarding the consciousness of infants. There was a time when we believed that we could slap the baby on its bum at birth, or separate it from its mother in a nursery and that it wasn't aware, it didn't have feelings. Through groundbreaking research, we now know differently. With Noah Wyle's narration of the film, we are brought into a whole new world of who our children are.

All proceeds from the film will go to benefit the "Healthiest Babies Possible" program at the House of Friendship. Wheather you are pregnant or thinking of starting a family or if you already have children, this film opens the space for us to discuss how we wish to honour our children.

After the film we will have door prizes and a panel discussion. I encourage you to be there, it will be a fantastic afternoon.