Kraft macaroni and cheese with cut up hot dogs…sound familiar anyone? Tell me I’m not the only one. Pop-Tarts and/or Captain Crunch for breakfast. White wonder bread with Skippy for lunch with a side of Campbell’s Chicken Noodle Soup. Did you eat food like this? The good news is I’m still living. The second is that the above is really what most of us grew up on. We did have a garden and I recall my mom canning tomatoes, but for some reason it’s the unhealthy stuff I remember. Probably because I liked it, at least some of it. For the record I wasn’t a fan of mac ‘n’ cheese with hotdogs. I didn’t like frozen pizza or hamburgers. I hid my peas under my mashed potatoes and wouldn’t eat my broccoli like most kids. Here we are a good thirty years later and now I’m in charge of filling bellies in my house. It is neither easy nor entirely inexpensive, though I thoroughly enjoy it.
When I was sixteen my mom was diagnosed with cancer and everything changed for me. Within six months I had developed an ulcer. Right away I related my belly ache to foods I was eating and immediately stopped eating red meat, drinking soda and avoided anything greasy. At the same time I was working as a nanny for a family that requested I cook for their children with food I had never even seen before. They shopped at a co-op sometimes, which was like walking into Candyland for me. Almost twenty years later I sometimes still worry if my mom’s diagnosis will become mine, and then I remember what I’ve created for myself: a lifetime of health and wellness.
I have done this via dreaming, journaling, working with vision boards and LIVING IT, EVERY DAY. When our children were born, we made an agreement that we would raise our children on natural foods, so that caring for ourselves won’t mean any extra task on the To-Do List because it’s just What We Do. Watching young children grow into this is so awesome. Our kids know gluten free eating and raw milk is their main dairy source. They know we work hard every day to build up their health and know they recover quickly from the small maladies and average colds that come our way. It’s fascinating to hear things like this come from our children: “mom, I think I need more greens today even though I don’t want them”, or, “mama, can I make myself a snack of carrots, hummus and crackers? Do you think my eyes will be as strong as a rabbits if I eat this?”, and my personal favorite, “mom, I can’t move my neck, are we going to the chiropractor this week?”
Mamas, it’s our turn to model for our children how to love and care for themselves. Going from zero to Natural Foods may just be the best first step.
About the Author
Nichi Hirsch Kuechle supports moms during pregnancy, birth, postpartum and beyond as a Parent Coach, Craniosacral Therapist and Birth/Postpartum Doula in Minneapolis. She publishes a weekly e-zine called Natural Family, which offers tips, ideas and resources for growing healthy babies. She also teaches a variety of live and virtual workshops. You can get Nichi’s New Parent Tool Kit, for free, by going to: http://www.MyHealthyBeginning.com.