As a mother, I naturally want to do what is best for my children. In fact, I would do whatever it takes to ensure their health and wellbeing. Before studying Ayurveda, I had the willingness to do whatever necessary to keep my son healthy, but a lack of direction. Modern parents are bombarded with health “facts” from our pediatricians, the media, and our communities. These “facts” are sometimes backed by research, but rarely by principles. Whether conventional or alternative, I often get information about how best to care for my child --what to feed him, what kind of routine to put him on, which medicines, or herbs to use for various small ailments, etc—without a clear reason why it was chosen or the reasons behind why it should work for my child. The results were mixed, but whether my son was helped by the information or not, I was not empowered with the knowledge of how to choose wisely as a mother. Ayurveda has given me that gift.
The beauty of Ayurveda is that it is simply living in accordance with nature. This beautiful science explains that I am a part of a whole, living in a system, connected to and affected by the sun, the moon, my own bowl of beans; and so is the child growing inside of me. This is a wisdom our ancestors carried. And these truths were passed mother to child in each bowl of soup, in each tender touch, and loving word not just in India, but from strong threads woven into all traditional cultures. Our grandmothers and great grandmothers knew which foods to feed their families, and when to prepare them, which plants to use for a healing brew, when to put the child to bed, when to send him out for some fresh air and exercise, and when to seek a healer with more in-depth knowledge. As a culture, somewhere along the way, we’ve lost this basic knowledge. Ayurveda is helping this mama to get it back.
My mothering is lovingly infused with the knowledge preserved and passed down from teacher to student, healer to healer, mother to mother. This ancient science rooted in India is also urging me to remember the wisdom from my own grandmothers. This has brought about simple changes that have made a world of difference not only to the health and wellbeing of my son, but in my confidence as a mama. I know how to nourish my child and how to help him stay healthy and grow strong. I have the joy of preparing fresh, local, healthy, organic foods for my son; and the understanding of what to do when he has the sniffles or a restless night of sleep. Largely, his food and lifestyle are the medicine that keeps him healthy, but I also know when to seek out the knowledge of an Ayurvedic healer (in our case at the Vedika Seva Clinic) for more in depth and personal advice. And for each of these blessings, I’m one happy and grateful-hearted mama.