Meet the MotherWise Bloggers: Crystal

Breastfeeding at a peaceful protest.

Breastfeeding at a peaceful protest.

Hello everyone!  I’m Crystal.  I suppose it’s only appropriate that I start from the beginning. From the ethers of time and space I chose my parents, landed on this planet and began my journey. In my early youth I enjoyed writing and reading. I wrote stories with our old typewriter, and then our newer typewriter.  I also pretended to be a lawyer and a doctor and who knows what else, but the writing and reading was profound.

Me at 10.

Me at 10.

Then, when I was 10 years old, I decided I was going to be a massage therapist. (And here, I thank goddess that my commitment to that desire and goal helped me stay on my path). At this point my father was entering school to get his Doctorate in Chiropractic. In addition to my father’s career change, I also had my mother, who was the one who first delved into the ideas of chiropractic and acupuncture before others even really knew what it was or that it existed (in a small town in the Midwest). Mind you, despite her evolving views, I still was given rounds of antibiotics, early vaccines and what not.  That does not fit with what some may imagine regarding a person who chooses natural health care and that all changed around age 10 when my father furthered his education.  Either way, it was a good foundation; one with which I could expand on and learn about without being a complete black sheep of my family.

The next profound time frame is age 18. During this time I had been in an accident (which disjointed my senior year of high school), I had a miscarriage (which changed my life, and I’m grateful for everything about it), and finished massage school (which also changed my life and keyed me in to myself on a whole new level).  I immediately was a sole proprietor and have worked as one since then. This history was the foundation for my Natural lifestyle. I jumped into it more wholly around age 23 when I eliminated the microwave and became aware of things like MSG and what not. I then moved to the Bay Area (San Francisco) where I was able to expand on my healthy and natural lifestyle with an abundance of resources.

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It was in San Francisco where I met an individual whom I had an interesting connection with. I quickly became pregnant and instantly my spidey senses were on alert and everything about his presence screamed “danger.” Some of the most dramatic moments of my life occurred during this time frame, which is always disturbing to me because I like my ‘less/no drama’ life so much more.

Alas, I planned and had a beautiful home birth in a beautiful location with friends I love having around, and a midwife who was even more spectacular than I anticipated. (Here I am grateful that I did not birth when I was 18, lacking the information and intuitive sense of my self that I had at 27).

25 weeks pregnant.

25 weeks pregnant.

From the moment I was pregnant at 26, something woke up inside of me! I felt in tune with myself (more than I had before, despite doing a lot of work in that arena throughout my life). I felt my bear energy wake up more, and the typical “momma bear” come out from within. Because of this, I feel I have made my choices more strongly based on what I feel rather than just what I think. I have a lot of air in my western astrology chart, and I’m a Vata (Ayurveda), so thinking and being in those airy other realms is my forte.

I did not have a plan to co-sleep or to nurse beyond 2 years or to ‘practice attachment parenting.’ I was simply doing what felt right. I felt it only natural to pick up my baby when she needed something. I specifically remember a time when I was discussing with a friend (while I was still pregnant) The Baby Book by Dr. Sears, and the mention of attachment parenting. I simply said, “Well, duh, isn’t that what makes sense, why wouldn’t I react this way?”  Oh how simple I make it sound. Well, the truth is, the farther into motherhood I went, the more I saw generational patterning.  This has become a great interest to me, and thus I am writing a book about what I am seeing. And it is things like generational parenting that can make Attachment Parenting seem not so natural to some, as well as a challenge to others.

After birthing, I did feel judgments from the world falling all over me. I decided to relocate. I also decided to go to a moms’ group that consisted of a bunch of moms who birthed (or planned to but transferred) at home. It felt so wonderful to meet with these other mommas! HoLy BuCkEtS, the support and knowledge I received was astounding. Here were a bunch of women, in a similar (or veteran) position as myself. We got to talk about our favorite BPA-free toys, how we were going to introduce solids, EC’ing, nursing in public and the list goes on. Let’s just say Wednesday nights made me sane for those first 6 months (minus the very first month when it was solo central-other than some help from friends).  Once I relocated I was introduced to the Facebook world of natural motherhood. I joined a few groups and enjoyed sharing information. It was similar to the in-person group I was so fond of, but of course not in person. I then started seeing more of the other side–the arguments and intense passion that exudes when people talk about heated topics. From this, I was reminded of how women would really benefit if they stuck together instead of attacked one another or reacted out of jealousy or possessiveness. I have learned a lot from these groups of mothers, and have just been listening to my intuition as I go along. It was natural to have my daughter sleep with me, so I did that.  I felt it right to nurse until 1-2 years old, because I had thought that was when kiddos naturally weaned, but then I learned more as well as felt I was going to follow my daughter’s cues and she has shown about zero interest in weaning and she’s 3 years old, so there we go.

Nursing my daughter.  Photo by Ashley Wegh Photography.

Nursing my daughter. Photo by Ashley Wegh Photography.

I have always enjoyed traveling and I like the way people learn via internships and personal experience–I have always thought All learning should occur that way. I talked to an acquaintance about unschooling, read a John Gatto book and solidified my decision that we were unschooling. I had a friend point out that circumcision is painful for babies and didn’t feel it was a good idea, but was having a girl so didn’t think about it more until I met my first intactivist, our very own Kristen Tea, who only had to point to the fact that it’s a cosmetic surgery to begin the journey of being passionate about leaving boys intact. I changed my major from Biology to Human Development and Family Science with focus on Child Development, with a minor in Psychology.  All of this knowledge being whirled at me was validating all that I was feeling inside.

Now, with all of that oh so intuitive stuff, I have a dark side. That dark side is my programming. I have recognized (as mentioned) some generational patterning, which I do not want to pass on. In these years and years of healing work, I have noticed a lot of things that life coaches address–and that is working with the power and vibrations of words, and how to really work with the energies of life to be in one’s power and create the life one truly wants. Because of this, I have helped numerous people get past hidden things–a Lot rooted in their childhood. Now, sure there is the light side of this, where one can say, how convenient that we don’t remember those first few years, yet they are so profound and we have so much of our being which is ‘set up’ during that time frame–some comedian said ‘if that weren’t the case psychologists wouldn’t have a job’ but the thing is, is that I see it. I feel it and I have cleared shit out of my way. I have assisted others with it. I see the world in symbology and this serves me and dis-serves me because it can give an illusion of CONTROL, and as most parents know, Control is an illusion. We only have so much control. Which brings me to BALANCE. We control what we control and the other side is that we Surrender to the Universe.

Alas, I pull together my entire past to live my life in every relationship. My passions merge so I can create and do everything on this planet that I desire.

At my current juncture I am in a ‘soul mate’ type of relationship with a partner whom I have a spiritual connection with and is here to share this journey of life. I feel ridiculously blessed to have a partner who is on the same page when it comes to parenting decisions and who possesses as much, if not more, passion than myself. The arrival of this relationship has added to new components of parenting and has allowed me the space to expand and grow in ways that I was unaware of. It is an interesting transition to go from solo parent to having a partner and I think the timing of our connection is quite perfect for the grand scheme of things.

Me and my partner Franco.

Me and my partner Franco.

I have also expanded upon my toolbox of services and talents, and have been able to honor my love of working with women and goddess energy. I do work as a birth and postpartum doula. I teach children’s yoga as well as momma plus baby yoga (in the works), and family yoga. I have stuck with my love of writing and am putting together non-fiction books as well as children books. I am still finishing my BS in Human Development (focus on Child Development) and Family Science and minor in Psychology. I do some spiritual and natural living coaching as well as continue my body and energy work (in person and via distance).

Overall, I feel the connection of the Earth and the animals (including people) and plants. I feel everything is aligning quite nicely and I am excited for the many new adventures ahead!

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Categories: Crystal

Author:Crystal

I’m Crystal. I’m a Momma, Lover/Partner, Gemini, Number 9, Vata, Fairy Goddess, Healer, doula, writer, artist, placenta remedy creator, educator and student (I teach others as I learn and both are forever happening). I do my best to live this life in every moment and maintain as much peace and balance within myself as possible. And then I remember that I am human. I feel as though I embody many different faces and with this I have a wide range of skills and interests. My number one role is that of Mother. I am (and have been since birth) with my daughter (who is currently a couple months past 3 years old) almost 24/7. We unschool so I am constantly learning! As is she. I view parenthood as the epitome of stepping outside of oneself and embodying empathy and compassion.

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5 Comments on “Meet the MotherWise Bloggers: Crystal”

  1. Shannon, Alexandria, VA
    January 1, 2013 at 7:21 pm #

    I love your passion and ability to follow your mothering instincts, Crystal. Thanks for sharing your story! You are so right about the incredible amount of support women can give one another when they adopt an encouraging attitude toward other mothers. I’m 5 months into my new journey as a natural mama, and would love to know which additional groups (aside from MotherWise) are out there on Facebook that you have found helpful in the world of natural parenting. Thanks!

  2. crystalmotherwise
    January 1, 2013 at 10:31 pm #

    Congratulations on your motherhood journey!
    Gosh there are quite a few. I admin a page called Naturalist Momma (but I’m not on there everyday). I like Zen Parenting, Primitive Mommy. Just liked Motherhood: The Truth. Progressive Parenting, Peaceful Parenting. If you check out even just a couple, you may see others from different posts they make. Or take a peek at the pages that Motherwise and the others “Like” :)

  3. Arin
    January 28, 2014 at 1:17 pm #

    Awe. I love this. Such a connection in all that is universal. Many shared beliefs. I also didn’t realize all the Wise Mamas particularly had individual blog(s) and *posts* doh!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Meet the MotherWise Bloggers: Kristen | MotherWise - January 1, 2013

    […]  My doula eventually introduced me to one of her doula friends– our very own blogger Crystal!  Crystal is one of the only other breastfeeding moms I had in my life in those early years, and […]

  2. MotherWise | Ashley Wegh | A Photographers Life - January 2, 2013

    […] Click here for more info about Crystal. […]

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