OK. So I know my baby is going on 16 months now, but before we launch in to present day insights I feel like we have to back it up for a second and give you a taste of where The Cultured Seed started…
For a woman, the physical experience of pregnancy is immediate and undeniable –constant peeing, sleepiness that no nap will ever overcome, and an insatiable urge to eat everything. For a man, while not a direct experience, I think that most partners experience some form of these symptoms by osmosis; at least my husband did, matching my midnight cravings and flowing down that emotional rollercoaster with periodic bouts of crying. As an expecting mommy, you watch everything that goes in your mouth, you exercise, you do the best by your little seedling because by-golly, there is a baby in there! And all you can think of is extracting this baby (healthy and beautiful) from your body so that you can stop worrying about tripping or developing diabetes from all of the peanut butter covered brownies you want to eat.
Then your sprout makes his or her grand entrance and the relief rapidly gets smothered in a whole other level of paranoia. You have a person to grow! This is not the lovely sapling that your hubby gave you on Valentine’s Day. You know, the one you forgot to water and sneakily shoved into the trashcan when the leaves turned shriveled and yellow. This is a mini-you-him-real-live-baby that will grow up to be someone’s wife, husband, CEO, CPA, Senator, Surgeon, Super Star! They say babies don’t come with a manual – and if mine did, then that mean nurse that wouldn’t bring me a sandwich when I was in labor must have stole it! As new parents we want the best for our little ones, we want them to be smart and loving and responsible and kind. We want them to exceed our accomplishments and bypass the areas where we got hung up. And while our parents did a damn fine job, even that manual can’t be followed to the “T”, because these are just different times and you and your partner are two different people.
So I began to ask myself, how do you cultivate your little sprout into a kick-ass global citizen? How do you grow a child that has been exposed to those things that will give him or her the tools to think and act critically, to know how choose for themselves, to be sensitive to the needs of others, to create a life that impacts and heals the world, to live in happiness and know how to give and receive love? I think that as parents we write that manual every day. The guidelines will differ from household to household, based on your morals, priorities and ultimately what you have been exposed to and think is essential in the formation of your little tyke. But ultimately it is a lifelong journey down unknown paths, filled with adventures and misadventures, triumph and failure, joy and tears. The journey is what cultivating our seed is all about. And even though we do it all for them, we learn so much about ourselves in the process, so much so that we would no longer recognize ourselves without that little person to fill our days.