Every night, in homes all around the world, there are mothers rocking and swaying, nursing and cuddling their babies to sleep. Sisters in the night who may never meet, yet are deeply connected by a nurturing maternal force that’s as old as time itself.
Every day, there are parents sitting with toddlers who are melting down, making space for big emotions and leaning into their own discomfort as they try to break generational patterns. Parents who are trying so hard to make their children’s emotional backpacks just that little bit lighter.
And every moment, there are parents doubting themselves. Mothers without a village who feel as though their light is the only one on at 3am. Fathers who believe that gentle parenting is the path forward…but wonder if their friends are right, or if their child really does need more ‘discipline’. Parents, like you, looking for that village.
I was once a fresh new mama too, with no idea of what to do, but carrying with me a deep sense of how to be. I didn’t know anybody in real life who was parenting the way I was – bedsharing, full-term breastfeeding, or choosing not to use time-outs, threats, and rewards.
Yet, I rarely doubted my choices.
All the evidence I needed was standing right in front of me, staring up at me with wide blue eyes, eyes filled with nothing but connection, joy, wonder, and innocence.
Of course, I was exhausted, but I was intensely happy as a new mother and I wholeheartedly believe it’s because I chose to follow my own path, as hard as it can be to go against the crowd. Looking back on the “radical” choices I made, I have nothing but deep gratitude and respect for my new mama self, venturing forth into the unknown.
Because, at some point knowledge gives out and we must bravely venture into uncertainty, ambiguity and fear. Yet, the opposite of knowledge isn’t always ignorance; it can be wonder, mystery and possibility.
“The definition of vulnerability is uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure. But vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our most accurate measure of courage.”
As we chose to embrace natural parenting and ignore the “rules” of modern parenthood, my perspective shifted and I suddenly became aware of a misunderstood minority I never knew existed – babies and children.
I became aware of the disconnect in our culture between what babies and children actually need, and the type of care we’re told to provide.
We’re told to leave babies alone in their crib to cry themselves to sleep. To show our toddlers whose boss and put them in a time out or dish out a consequence to control their behaviour, as we see fit. To fit our square peg children into round holes by forcing them into societally determined developmental milestones such as readiness for school without seeing each child as an individual on their own developmental path. h of readiness.
This realisation made the gap between our expectations of what we’re led to believe parenthood should look like and the reality of what it is like obvious. This expectation gap results in so much discontent, doubt and worry for parents. The greater this gap, the greater the discontent, and the more we come to believe that our children just need more discipline. So instead, what if we could just minimise that expectation gap and parent in a way that meets our children exactly where they are?
And that’s why I started Raised Good.
To share my story, to show another way motherhood could look. To shine a light on the incredible opportunity parenthood gives us. As I was wanting to see my son for who he is, I also wanted to help others to truly see their kids too.
As parents we have the incredible honour of providing our children with the foundations they need to become the resilient, confident and self-assured adults, but we cannot do it all alone.
And so I set about documenting our journey and sharing everything we learnt along the way. I’d type blog posts in my notes on my phone as my son napped beside me, persisting through thoughts of not being very good at stringing words together until I found some self belief in my abilities. And for me, writing became cathartic
It feels like therapy, and for all these years you have been kind enough to be here reading my words. You’ve been the one on the other end of the screen; my unofficial listening partner.
Raised Good has become an award-winning blog, but it is also so much more than that. It is part of who I have become. It is a beautiful community of like-minded parents swimming against the tide of society’s expectations.
It has become a resting place and a virtual home for parents around the world, all choosing to block out the white noise of society, follow their intuition and return to more nurturing ways of parenting. It humbles me that so many of you have joined me on this journey.
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed individuals can change the world. In fact, it’s the only thing that ever has.” Margaret Mead
My intention is always to support, encourage and offer you advice free from judgement.
I’m not going to offer you quick fixes. I’m not going to pressure you into “solutions”. I’m not going to objectify or minimise your motherhood to a set of numbers, percentiles or measurements.
That, I will never do.
Because, that’s not what you need.
What you need is to feel seen and heard. To know that you’re not alone, that others are walking this path beside you. That you belong.
“Fitting in is about assessing a situation and becoming who you need to be to be accepted. Belonging, on the other hand, doesn’t require us to change who we are; it requires us to be who we are.” Brené Brown
Something many people don’t know is that Raised Good has always been a side gig alongside my “grown up” job.
Everything I’ve created from the annual summits, to the blogs, ebooks and courses have been crafted in the hours I can carve out between work and mothering.
It may also surprise you that despite appearances, I often doubt myself when I create content or a new offering for Raised Good and occasionally feel the familiar imposter syndrome…..who am I to create this? Who am I to share my words?
Do you know what always gets me through?
You and the community surrounding Raised Good. Every time you respond to my emails, leave a comment, or share your stories from your heart, a fire ignites in mine and I become more driven to keep doing what I do here at Raised Good.
You have come from all over the world and shared your stories so openly and vulnerably.
Time and again a familiar tale was told…
“I don’t know anyone else choosing to parent this way, while unconventional, it feels natural, logical and authentic, this is the way my heart is telling me to parent, but I feel as though I don’t know where I belong anymore.”
Time and again the responses were the same…
“Me too” “You’re welcome here’” “Thank you so much for sharing with us” “I see my story in yours” “Are you a fly on my wall because that’s our story too.”
So many of you, like me, were looking for a place to feel seen, heard and welcomed.
Like me, you were longing for the kinship of other parents choosing to do things differently. You wanted to find where you belonged just as I did all those years ago and it is because of you and your trail blazing that Raised Good is the platform it has become.
Raised Good attracts people just like you:
- The one making a conscious effort to raise happy and healthy children
- The one forging a trusting bond and unshakeable connection with your child
- The one who attunes to your child’s needs and tries to respond with respect and compassion.
- The one reclaiming the wonder of motherhood and surrendering to the joy and messiness of childhood.
For a long time I’ve wanted to create a space where we all of us can go deeper together, share more intimately our own journeys, be open about our fears and celebrate our children on this wild ride called parenthood.
I’ve longed for a space to journey alongside you, to share what I’ve come to learn over the nine years of immersing myself in the world of natural parenting. I want to be able to give back to you more directly. Connect with you more intentionally
So, Gather, a membership community for natural parents has been created from all of you, for all of you. An online membership for natural parents, a community of like-minded people from around the world who understand how difficult it can be to walk this path alone.
Because, when it comes to Raised Good, I’m only just getting started!
So, come and see what we’re creating. I can’t wait to connect with you on Zoom calls. Dive into workshops on parenting topics you want to hear most about. Create community and support one another on our parenting journeys.
Do you want to ask me about my full-term breastfeeding journey? Or what our cosleeping setup looks like? Or how to gain cooperation with your child without punishments, threats or bribes? Or how I handle judgement? This is where you can ask me those questions.
Over the years, I’ve learned that I’m more of a 1-1 kinda gal – I thrive in smaller, more personal social settings and Gather is where I will be pouring my energy, rather than with thousands of people on social media.
I would love for you to join me inside! Think of this as your personal invitation to join Gather, my friend.