Social Media Reflection. InNaPoWriMo Day 19.

my mom, the best follower you can ever getThe day has come

when I got more likes

from strangers

visiting

my little greenhouse

than from my own mom.

My stats are raising

my hands start shaking

Ricky Astley

reveals my age and

it will take a strong, strong (wo)man

to ever let my mom go.

Let Facebook aching

let twitter breaking

I owe my public

but time has come

I’m thinking to leave you alone

reading this poem now.

She is

my favorite fan

I’m sorry folks

but I’ll let you go

I’ll close my browser

and you know, you know

you know

I’ll call her

before I let the dark night go.

The hidden child. Let’s talk about autism to children. InNaPoWriMo Day 6.

Click here to get the full version of this beautifully illustrated poem for children in PDF for just $2.30. English & Spanish Bilingual e-book. Length 12 pages.

There’s no me. I’m not here. They are wondering…
Where is the boy?,
A thousand times they call a name that’s not mine.
I am hidden.
I am very good at staying still where I am.
There’s no me. I’m not here. They are searching…
Where is the boy?
They caress me a thousand times.
But I’m the furniture,
I’m the chair, the table, the living-room lamp.
soy un leon ahora si
© Illustration Patricia Fitti (Argentina)
There’s no me. I’m not here. They are asking…
Where is the boy?
They hug me a thousand times.
But I am a lion, a bird I am.
I run fast, fly high, I’m also very good at that.
cuadro

© Illustration Patricia Fitti (Argentina)

Now I am cold, I am sleepy.
My mother sings a name, a name she knows is mine.
Where is my mum?
When I leave my stash my mother is waiting for me.
We name each other, we cherish, we hug a thousand times.
My mother is right here, by my side.
© Fernanda Raiti for texts. fernandaraiti @ gmail . com
© Patricia Fitti for illustration. patriciafitti @ fibertel . com . ar

Get the beautifully  illustrated e-book bilingual version here for just $2.30

I never thought about amararama as a place where to sell anything. I still don’t do so (what I said in Mirror, oh mirror was just a joke).

But this amazing poetry week drove me back to a project that is very dear to my heart: to publish The Orders of Love for Children Collection. Based on Bert Hellinger’s highly inspiring vision, I wrote over 10 stories and poems that will help children to understand their family systems as a the best place where they can experience belonging, give and receive in balance and be recognized for whom they are and for their right to hold a proper place in their families. Some of these writings, as The Hidden Child, The Enormous Child and The Invisible Child offer a renewed and compassionate perspective about the interruption of the natural flow of love in a family system and how it can be restored through a healing vision and healing words.

Artist Patricia Fitti shared part of this dream and she illustrated The Hidden Child for me. Get the full version of this beautifully illustrated poem in PDF format here at Gumroad (a wonderful place where to sell your self published e-books, by the way). It will help you talking about autism to young children in a simple and effective way and you will be supporting independent writers and illustrators. It is an English & Spanish Bilingual Version and it is best viewed setting Adobe Reader‘s Page Display in Two Page View function.

Thank you!!

Pride, no prejudice. Or why my boys wear flower crowns.

A paper moon, a fading sky.

Evanescent daylight.

Stilled mind opens the gap for a flower hunt.

moon in the kitchen sky
Accomplished the task, hidden mischief, back home we are.

Now scattered perfumes, melted beauty fills the kitchen´s heart.

Nature´s palette embellishing the table of the newborn night.

Also scissors, tape, cardboard (recycled pizza boxes, actually… pizza always inspired us).

natures pallette

In and out flows our breath.

Harmonious creativity, a silent path.

Suddenly the surprise.

Oh my!
A little king emerges,
precious nature’s jewels adorning his inner sky!

the flower jewel

– I love you mom, his petal whispers fall into the fountain of my heart.

A new day arrives, get the camera, go outside.
Catch the best of morning light.

Apples, cheese and bread.

A royal breakfast, pure simplicity.

Three little kings sit and chit-chat.

So young, so proud.

Fulfilled, satisfied, I wear my crown.

Ripe dream, let me be a queen.

– Here son, take a picture of mine.

I extend the camera to the older child.

He takes his time, presses the shooter, shows me his art.

There´s no queen to be seen.

That´s only me, a simple smiling mom.

the mother queen

His focus is in my eyes.

– How I love you son, whispering petals fall into the fountain in his heart…

Now, could you let me see a picture of me wearing the crown?

Click.

– There you are, mom. the queen´s crown

Maternity.

Fading beauty, eternally mine.

About falling down and getting hurt as an adult, as an infant. A not so far experience.

escalon colectivo
I am ok now. My right leg must be kept high for one more week, nothing to worry about. But a lot to learn from.

It was Saturday morning and my husband had gone to work to the Capital City driving our car. (We are a one car family – which is great because we were a no car family for some time and it gets tough to move around with three kids).
Anyhow, I had no car and around 10 AM my PC collapsed. I thought it could be easily repaired so I went to our local commercial center by bus. Two kids and the big PC case came with me. When I was stepping down from the bus, the big case covered my visual field, the floor was not flat, my ankle twisted and I fell down crashing the other leg knee strongly against the floor. Many buses in Argentina do have really stiff climbing steps so I fell down from a considerable height. (The upper photo shows it clearly). parada colectivo

subiendo bondi

The only thing I knew was I was suffering a tremendous pain in both my legs.

In the meanwhile, the PC case flew in the air banging against the sidewalk.
The bus dirver did not move.
My kids stepped down after me.
The little one was crying.
The bus supervisor started arguing with a lady passenger.
Two really big guys held me from both sides trying to set me on my feet.

I wished I were alone, nobody around me, to suffer my pain in peace. But I had to react and respond, speak and set limits, protect and comfort.

– Don´t pull me up, was the first I could say. I cannot stand.

– You two, stop arguing. (Their emotional energy was pouring over my head and it really disturbed me).

– Little one, come here. Mama got hurt but I will be ok. Sit on my lap.

It demanded me so much energy, so much experience, so much love to say those three sentences under those circumstances!

Slowly pain decreased, my good friend Irene picked me up, brought me home, placed a bandage and arnica cream on the swelled foot.

Time and patience did the rest.

I am ok now, just the right ankle must rest high for some more days and my mother / teacher heart must remember.

Remember.

My own children and my little students.

The youngest are 18 months, 2 and 3 years old. The more they learned to move independently and the more they grew in a safe caring environment, the less they get hurt or fall down. But still they go through this experience quite more often than we adults do.

Here and then they have an accident. And once and again it hurts.

What happens when a toddler falls down?

Does anyone wait for a child to overcome pain, comforting and allowing him or her to stay where he or she fell down as long as needed?

Do parents argue instead of assisting and comforting the hurt child? (“Where where you? Why did you let him fall?”… I have seen many parents fighting out of fear, their emotions set in the first place overwhelming the already stressed child).

Do infants have to “care” for the adult´s feelings?

A week later my little students came back to play. I told them what happened in a serene way, using few words, sharing my life with them.

Amber (2) pulled up her trouser and showed me her knee wound. She understood me well.

Benjamin (18mo) said “PUM!” and held his forehead adding sorround sound to my story.

Big Bus, commented Mily offering a sense of size.

Martin (20mo) went to his mom and retold her the story. He broadcasted the experience to the general public.

Sophie said: “wate, wate”.
– Are still you thirsty?
– Yes, she answered.

Mily had left the table to pick a soft ball next to Martin who already played with a transparent jar.

Life went on.

I poured a little water in Sophie´s glass and gratitude expanded within myself.

Feeling understood is such a wonderful experience…

And they understood me so well… They really did.

Mess or Marvel? Depends on your perspective.

This is my early childhood educational center after the last playgroup meeting yesterday.

Done by kids age 3 to 6.

In Cooperation. Concentration. Contemplation.

Absolute beauty.

Believe me. I really appreciate it. With all my heart.

However, I had the intention to untangle the whole thing to be able to reach the entrance in a straight line, without having to sort “snakes”, “laser rays”, “time machines” and “time tunnels”.

My kids begged me not to.

– Boys, I can barely walk here, I said.

– We know!, middle one agreed in a gleeful mood, his eyes sparkling true enthusiasm. – That´s the best of it!

P1120191 P1120192 P1120194 P1120197 P1120198

“Madge and her Magic”. What Magda Gerber has done for me (and other grown-ups).

You can stay at the shore, denying pearls exist.
Or you can dive into the sea, and find out the truth.

magda gerber

I admit I am a passionate woman and this is a passionate post. A post about a woman who turned to be an amazing friend although I didn´t get the chance to meet her in person. A post about the journey I started guided by her words. And about my gratitude for what I found following her path.

I met her around 4 years ago. Our encounter started softly, as a shy relationship. Somehow I came across her name… I don´t know how it happened nor when I read about her  for the first time. Never mind. The fact is it happened.

Magda Gerber, a Hungarian infant specialist came into my life. And changed me. As a mother, as a wife, as an educationist, as a parent advisor, as a human being.

In my working space I offer playgroups for babies and infants based on the free education movement. I particularly base my work on the research conducted by Dr. Emmi Pikler and the parenting philosophy provided by Magda Gerber at RIE.

Even when the playgroups are oriented to babies and infants, I notice a clear need in parents for guidance and help.

“How do you do it?”, they ask me. “You are respectful and loving. You don´t shout, you don´t scold, you don´t neither punish nor lose your temper at ANY time and toddlers play in such a self-regulated and harmonious way!”

They believe I am a magician (lol!). Just imagine… some hocus pocus here, some fairy dust there and, voilá! A peaceful active and engaged toddler playgroup emerges. But I know nothing about magic (ups!). Sorry to confess that. My only secret is this: I took to heart the treasure that Magda Gerber has left in her Educaring approach.

When I first read Magda Gerber, something deep within told me it was a great discovery. I didn´t have the need for further research to support what I found. None could have been better than my own, clear, intense and heartfelt understanding: her vision is TRUE. Or even better: her vision offered me a link to my inner TRUTH.

It is not about a theory. It´s about life expanding under a new light.

In my work field I have observed how much guilt parents feel when they cannot strictly follow this or that theory they´ve been recommended as the best one for rearing their babies, which is a real pity because guilt deprives parenting from the joy of being intuitional and respectful to oneself (and therefore to the rest of the world, starting with our babies).

In some cases, intelligent, loving parents even put their babies into real danger (physical danger I mean, such as driving with a baby on the lap or carrying a baby while dealing with boiling water on a stove) because they cannot stand hearing them cry. They know  they are doing wrong, still they  feel lost. When they ask me for help, we have noticed that having read about attachment parenting and brain damage caused by intense crying was a main influence on their risky decision.

Of course, sleep and limits are also always present in my playgroups parent´s agenda. In an endless insomniac chain of desperate days they have read all what they found on the topic and have tried a bunch of methods. Even when they really want it (and need it), still they can´t put their toddlers to sleep in their own beds and they feel  lost in the quicksand of confusion when facing their children´s need for limits.

Since they trust me, they tend to ask for help (they still think I have some magic powder somewhere – I have none, I insist). When I listen to their questions, I tune in. I check my own experiences. I accept them, share them and let them go. Then I connect: what would Magda have answered? God! I don´t know! So I wait… And trust…

I let her words come to me. What did she say related to the particular issue? That´s the lifesaving device that always helps. Parents start nodding in acknowledgment. They get touched. Usually this is enough for them to find their own way through. They start verbalizing themselves their own answers! And I feel a tremendous gratitude.

Differently from other theories, Gerber offers a philosophy, a way of questioning, understanding and interpreting infant education. If you just analyze it from “outside”, without testing it, you may criticize many topics, especially if they are taken out of context (such as misinterpreting “not immediately picking up a crying baby” as “abandonment”, or “not carrying babies” as “underestimating skin to skin contact”).

Accessing to a knowledge that points beyond the regular social standards  tends to be generally criticized, because it won´t fit into social accepted ideas of what is Truth. If you stay in that realm, you´d probably find lots of reasonable arguments to judge her approach and even think her philosophy is “outdated”, old-fashioned… as some people do say.

I´m convinced this is simple vain talk, just as staying in the shore, denying the existence of pearls. She was way advanced in the front line of humane vanguard.

But if you dive into Gerber´s vision, if you test it and get really soaked with its principles, that´s quite a different experience. Being it so wonderful, why is not everyone joining in, then?

I guess the hard part of Magda Gerber´s approach is that we, adults, need to reteach ourselves. At least this is what her magic guided me to 

  • relearn how to WAIT for life´s perfect timing, instead of pressuring into it,
  • relearn how to RESPECT in a deep humane way beyond stereotypes and age gaps,
  • relearn how to ACKNOWLEDGE and ACCEPT .

Imagine a world ruled under these statements. If we are in any way expanding into an evolutionary process, I would sow for a future guided by these principles. I cannot think of a better way to define LOVE.

She saw that future. She found the pathway to a better world by respecting life from the very beginning.

She did it for babies.

She did it for us.

So the other day, when my heart jumped in joy (one more time) while observing and working with peaceful, happy babies, toddlers and parents I could only say: Hey! There was some magic here after all, but it is not mine… it belongs to her.

Thank you Magda! May this be my humble tribute to you.

The hug. A postcard

Klimt

The other day I was listening to a mother of a 2 years old sweet boy who was playing sitting by her side. She was telling me about her pregnancy and her child´s personality. Out of respect I looked at him and said softly:

– Now mom is speaking of you. I know you´re listening. You´re free to express whatever you need.

This little boy doesn´t say a word yet (at least not in Spanish, very surprisingly he says “ball”, “jake” and “car” in English!) and the mother mentioned that point a few times. In the meanwhile, her child started rolling on the carpet, creating a “wave sensation” wiht his own body rolling away from mom, rolling back to her. The kind of “Fort/Da!” concept was incarnated in his own body. Every movement made sense and responded to what his mother was saying. Then the mother made an awesome statement:

– There is one thing I knew in this life and that is I wanted to become a mom and have children. That was my deepest desire.

Suddenly the boy stopped rolling back and forth, stood up, run as fast as his little legs allowed him and jumped on his mother lap, hugging her…

Little arms, tiny hands, clear mind, generous love hugging truly, unconditionally, in full surrender.

The mother became still, received her child hugging him back and they became One Soul.

I had the fortune to witness the magic.

Did I mention the child does not speak? I correct myself. He silently speaks in the universal language of the heart.

What do you feel when reading this story? Share your comments!