My little son Sequoia is already 10 weeks old. In these last weeks, I was thinking a lot what to write about now being a mother. Something that wouldn’t be ‘baby talk’ or ‘mother talk’ or ‘sweet talk’ or ‘ info talk’ or ‘complaining talk’ or ‘advice talk’ or ‘happy talk’. I wanted to write about something else. I am still not really sure what that is as so many people talk and write about motherhood, babyhood and parenthood. A whole big industry is making money by educating us about that totally natural event of having a baby. Sometimes I feel like being in a quick sand of words not knowing when I will get pulled down, swallowed by the word monster.
When I look at Sequoia I am stunned about the pace he learns holistically, about how accepting he interacts with the world, about his ability to be in the moment and most of all about his trust in us humans. It amazes me every time when I see how much he loves interacting with people, how he laughs, smiles and even falls asleep in their arms. Through him I have strong visceral memories of my own self being tiny. When I hold him, I can feel me being held by my mother and the whole world she represented, I can also feel the pain having lost a big chunk on the way. I also understood why Contact Improvisation became such a big part in my life. Sometimes I can access this fundamental trust in a dance. I realized in these moments my trust is complete. I had to become a mother to understand my love for dancing.
Maybe we need theories packed with words because we don’t trust ourselves to naturally know how to be with our babies? Maybe that is why we rather repeat information from books or professionals and categorize our little ones in developmental stages than patiently observe our own children and get a much more accurate answer to any question we might have? Isn’t that exactly what every professional is supposed to be doing? Observing, evaluating and analyzing the results to a standardized answer. Nothing else. And aren’t we supposed to be the professionals for our children? So, why do we think standardized answers are so important?
I feel our mind and theory driven culture is lacking a fundamental trust in oneself. I see that expressed through nervousness and anxiety which is to a degree contagious. I have nothing against reading books and the accumulation of information. But everything we hear from another source has in essence no meaning until we experience it ourselves and is basically not much else than simple distraction. Since Sequoia is in my life, I get reminded every day how disconnected I mostly am. I see him understanding the world through all his senses. Everything is active at the same time. His body moving, his mind processing and his heart feeling and expressing without delay. He is a well of inspiration about how to be in this world. Open and trusting. I love that and him for teaching me.
In the picture above Sequoia is expressing very clearly that he is hungry! Maybe you remember my post from July 14th, the unfinished red. I did not finish that performance piece, but a baby was born a few days later.