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Mothers Networking for the Sake of Reprotection of the Babies Primal Health Continuum: the Breast Milk Thread from Ukraine to Italy

Miracle in the Heart project speaks at the conference for the World Breastfeeding Week’2018 in Sardinia

With unity small grows, with discord the greatest disintegrates.
~ Gaius Sallustius Crispus

Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it.
~ Mahatma Gandhi

All together

After the First International Online Festival on Natural Childbirth of Miracle in the Heart project in 2014, where I was a co-organizer, my six-year-old son asked, “Mom, why do you spend so much energy to help other mothers with their babies? Let them go through this themselves, let them experience a lot as you did...” That moment I gave him my sincere answer. However, it was only in 2018 that I realized that I could answer him in a comprehensive and vivid way how it is important mothers closeness was when Hilda Garst invited me and my children to come to the beautiful island of Sardinia to speak at a conference on childbirth and breastfeeding.

Hilda Garst is a mother of three children born at home, an organiser of several conferences in Italy with world experts in midwifery, ex-leader in LLL (La Leche League) with great experience. Since 2015 (since the end of our Second Online Festival) she has become my additional source of inspiration, wisdom, ideology in the field of family, motherhood, traditions and evidence-based medicine in childbirth and breastfeeding. “Tell your son that our cohesion, maternal benevolence, maternal love and love for humanity impulsed me to invite you to be guests in my house, show you the beauty of Sardinia and speak at my conference “Breastfeeding in Sardinia and in the world: Restoring the continuum” [1],” Hilda advised me.

Yes, precisely because with such mothers (thinking, conscious, active, initiative, sincere in their desire to "shine" not only their family but also others in the world) I would like to be, create, and also to be an example of what mothers activism can be really significant in the world, I agreed for the topic of my speech at the conference on October 6, 2018, suggested by Hilda - “Increasing networks on 5 continents to rediscover and reprotect the primal health-continuum of Pregnancy-Birth-Breastfeeding”.

Breastfeeding as part of the human primal health continuum

Amazing organization' logo

Hilda Garst (the name means ‘Peaceful Warrior’) has been representing and actively acting for more than 20 years (!) in the initiative of the mothergroup called ‘Birth-Breastfeeding-Primal Health-Serdiana’ (‘Nascita-Allattamento-Salute Primale-Serdiana’). This is a group of citizens who operate with the goal to share information, awareness and activism for the rediscovery and reprotection of the basic needs of the human species during birth, breastfeeding and the whole primal health continuum.

“Who else but Jack Newman should open this topical, heartfelt conference for the general public?!” I thought. Dr. Newman (an expert of our project, the famous Canadian paediatrician MD, FRCPC and breastfeeding advocate, the founder of the first Canadian nursing mothers clinic), kindly agreed.

In his brief video greeting for the participants of the event Jack Newman sincerely calls for, “…breastfeeding is under attack everywhere, we really need to fight back. And ‘fighting back’ means knowledge, and experience, and helping mothers to understand breastfeeding and how it works, and how they should not have to be supplementing with a formula in the vast majority of cases. Please, please help mothers to understand, help them the information they need instead of the information of the formula companies which are so often so undermining the breastfeeding!..” [2]

Happy hugs

This greeting was heard by about two half dozen mothers who came with their children (mostly babies), one (!) wonderful brave father, and several  breastfeeding peer counselors who activate voluntarily, a journalist, and a gynecologist from a breastfeeding friendly hospital. Unfortunately, the greeting of the mayor of the city of Dolianova announced in the conference programme, did not take place.

Nevertheless, the atmosphere at the conference was very warm, friendly, joyful, and welcoming. This is the full acceptance of a human being by Mother Earth, unconditional love and feeding him with all Her channels, Hilda Garst, the organiser of the event, reflected in the conference logo.

Nursing Mother Earth

Intro text

This logo drew the attention of passersby, visitors of shops, municipalities, hospitals and markets in Sardinia. It is not a coincidence that during the preparation of my presentation for the conference, I also came across a picture of the Millennial Gaia Statue - Mother Earth by the artist and sculptor Oberon Zell. In my opinion, it truly reflects the divinity of our planet as a Pregnant and Nursing Mother at the same time; her beauty, power, love for her children and the Universe where she is located; her inner light is like a Micro-Universe, and accumulated wisdom from the moment of her existence.

Millennial Gaia

I put the ‘New Millennium Goddess’ on the first slide of my presentation [3]. It is noteworthy that Gaia (Gaea) (Ancient Greek ‘Earth’) is the ancient Greek goddess of the Earth, who was born after Chaos. Definitely, it is impossible to remain indifferent to Mother Earth, and even to the figurine sold by amazon.com, because She “... is an invitation to each and every human being to enter consciously into the myth and story of the living Earth and to respond to Her as our Mother, as the larger being of which we are all part. No matter what language you speak, no matter where on Earth you come from, you can hold The Millennial Gaia in your hands and hear Her message.” [4]

I started my message with the traditional greeting and goodbye of the Ancient Mayans, which I read from Drunvalo Melkhisedek, “L'akesh Ala K'in!” (“You are another me, I am another you!”), which simply means, “We are all related!” That is why I am here today as a chain of a great Mother network, closeness and commitment... And this chain is not limited to any country, not one continent!”

To prove this, three stunning Italian mothers delivered their different in essence, but essentially the same presentations in terms of fruitfulness and inspiration.

Conference speakers: from mother to mother

Loredana Onidi (Sinnai, Sardinia), a teacher, a biologist specialized in medical microbiology gave some examples gave several examples of the fact that a person is 90% microbe!☺ The title of Loredana’s presentation was “The crucial “microbiome discovery and the discovery that we are “more mammalian than we thought”.

Slide of great presentation Process of wise conference Slide of great presentation

Мichela Сericco (Rome), a head of the Committee against Obstetric Violence in Italy and the president of the breastfeeding organization “Magic Drop” (“La Goccia Magica”) spoke on the subject “Activating the campaign “Breaking the silence” and the Video Inquiry about the donation of cord blood”.

It was Michela who, in 2015 on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, participated in a rally of 1000 mothers (!) near the building of the Ministry of Health of Italy, achieved an audience with the minister and ensured that obstetric violence was included into the official list of types of human abuse in Italian law! The president of the Italian Parliament Laura Boldrini had invited 1000 activist women of several associations against violence on women (including 33 women who activate with their associations against obstetrical violence. Michela was one of those 33 women). 

Michela brought for the World Breastfeeding Week a magnificent gift-symbol of breastfeeding and her organization, - tender biscuits in the form of drops of breast milk.

Amazing expert with creator of our project Wonderfull necklace Presented cookies

It is hard to imagine that to create a necklace adorning Michela, 40 women donated their breast milk for it! I was amazed that there are such technologies and such craftsmen. The overwhelming fact also is that women donate to everything!

The organiser of the conference, Hilda Garst (Serdiana, Sardinia), an activist for the protection of basic human needs in childbirth-breastfeeding-early postpartum, during the conference spoke a lot about the need to understand and protect the basic needs of the human species to maintain their primal health. This is a sincere, emotional message of her as a mother of many children and a thematic activist with 21 years experience in Italy (based on evidence-based medicine and human physiology), she spoke out in an interview with the regional TV channel Sardinia Videolina. A video report entitled “The Network of Activists is Increasing” was broadcasted on October 6-7, 2018 [5].

The TV episode also included a footage from my presentation, although, surprisingly, the journalist did not want to interview the visiting speakers, but expressed a desire to interview purely Sardinian residents - conference participants☺.

What kind of handmade can you do to change the language of others

Hilda Garst planned that unforgettable event for participants and speakers the way that the language of physiology and the restoration of the primal health continuum in the chain of pregnancy-childbirth-breastfeeding came in the spotlight: “No paradigm shift without language shift” (~ Dr. Michel Odent).

Hilda did many posters with her own hands in order not only to decorate the conference hall, but also to convey to the participants as clearly as possible the importance and the need to understand by their mothers that:

  • lactation is already formed (!) during pregnancy and childbirth;
  • the basic human needs in childbirth absolutely coincide with the basic needs of mammals;
  • “if you protect physiology from interferences so that breastfeeding/natural births/… will self-promote, self-protect and self-support, and so the physiological intrinsic power in the reproduction-evolution-motherhood processes will not be disempowered and weakened ever!” [6];
  • breastfeeding is basic for the baby, it is physiological, ‘carbon free’, inexpensive and convenient for the mother and family;
  • the use of formulas is non-physiological, imposed by manufacturers of formulas, it affects the health of the mother and baby, pollutes the nature of poorly recyclable wastes.

Handmade poster Handmade poster Handmade poster Handmade poster Workplace for speakers Handmade poster

Taking into account the abovementioned factors, the children participating in the conference were surely a vivid inspirational example, especially for women pregnant with their firstborns.

Happy mothers Beautifull child Warm atmosphere

My sons whom I breastfed for 2 years 4 months and 2 years 10 months, here already actively helped in organizing the event and served as porters, designers, photographers and animators☺. I am so grateful to them!

Amazing mothers Wonderfull child Relaxed child

Hilda is a very reading person, and, of course, at the conference there were many topical books for the event in English and Italian. I would never believe that I would be asked to autograph books of Dr Michel Odent and Ruth Ehrhardt! However, it turned out that everything is possible on the World Breastfeeding Week in Sardinia:)! With love, esteem and gratitude to all the authors of the books that Hilda has chosen for that conference!

Usefull literature Writing down wonderfull lecture

The mascot-guardian for the Guardian of basic needs of women and babies in childbirth

There were several surprises at the conference, and I prepared one of them with love and gratitude. Finally, I had the honour and the joy of presenting the Rag Doll [She-Guardian] to Hilda Garst. This is the third Rag Doll, which I presented as a gift to a third extraordinary woman.

The first two dolls have been also created by an extraordinary woman, the mother of 4, the Honoured Master of Ukraine Tatyana Rappoport-Maslennikova! The first two traditional Slavic dolls have still delighted and healed their keepers in Bali (midwife, CNN Hero’2011 Ibu Robin Lim) and the USA (doula, filmmaker Debra Pascali-Bonaro).

Each Tatyana’s doll is a uniqueness and a masterpiece, I am not get tired of seeing, noticing and thanking her for it! All the energy contributed in the works will certainly fill you in, dear Tatyana!

Each mascot is supplied with a cover letter describing the features of the Doll and it personal wishes (prayers) to its owner.

Amazing surprise Mascot-guardian Gifting wonderfull present

In response, Hilda kindly presented me with a wonderful book illustration about breastfeeding in the world, published by the world-famous association La leche League.

Amazing speech Interesting magazine Amazing speech

“Breast milk threads” from heart to heart

The surprise for the completion of the conference for mothers and about informed, authentic motherhood were:

  1. A musical intermezzo of great singers Francesca Puddu and Teresa Solinas “Sardinian lullabies: mother-baby and Mother-Earth language…” and the song about microbes!:).
  2. A theatrical performance of the actress with the “breast milk thread” wrapping all living beings in the world. Many participants of the event cried, including me. I did not understand Italian in the song, but I experienced love and common commitment. There are no barriers between loving mothers...

At the end of my presentation, I said, slightly rephrasing the words of Mahatma Gandhi, “Only unconditional love for living beings can change everything: regimes, paradigms... Unconditional love is love for the God and love of mother for her child. Hilda and I are here today, because we have this Love and Love for humanity...”

Beautifull statue

For us, the “breast milk thread” of mother and woman’s love extended not only to several countries, but also wrapped our hearts and cultures.

Breastfeeding culture (including long-term breastfeeding) is the culture and history of the island of Sardinia. A picture from Cagliari airport inspires and manifests it!

In the culture of Sardinians, it was also honourable to have many children, that is why a Sardinian father could transfer such a type of the transport for his wife and children from Holland to Sardinia, while Hilda adorned it with love and inventiveness☺.

Handmade bike Handmade bike

Only a few cultures can be proud of a set of traditions based on care and respect for human physiology, for a woman, a woman-mother; based on keeping/retention of authentic midwifery and principles of life of a nursing mother.

Moreover, the following is still retained in the world:

  • a female infibulation (Somalia, Sudan, Ethiopia);
  • a public defloration of the girl by her husband (Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait) or by all the men present at the wedding ceremony (Marquesas Islands);
  • the tradition of sending girls after the first periods in life and after each birth into exile in clay houses or sheds (“dirty women”) for 11 days (parturient women often do not survive) (Western Nepal);
  • the tradition of cauterizing the throat of a woman in labour to let the placenta deliver more easily (Ethiopia, Pakistan), etc.

Such traditions took root, as imported cacti took root in Sardinia.

Today we have intuitive knowledge, knowledge (evidence-based physiology, including the science of the human microbiome) and awareness of this knowledge, which, in the light of Copernican science, can help us to say, “We should not follow those traditions in childbirth and motherhood that annihilate and disfigure us! We were culturally blind, and we want to correct our mistakes!” Who can say that first? I think it is precisely the many mothers of the Earth planet who allow themselves to live in these traditions and rituals.

Do we still need millennia to change the cultural paradigm or birth paradigm? I think that we can do it already today. We are ordinary mothers (including international organisations, e.g., WHO, UNICEF, WABA, LLL), but with intuitive knowledge, consciousness and awareness, with our natural oxytocin and a cocktail of love hormones, with our understanding and acceptance of the fact that natural selection in nature is the hand of God. And merely It can guide and It leads. It was the one who brought me to Sardinia to the conference with the good purpose of change in the field of midwifery, obstetrics and breastfeeding! So merely in this context the phrase “pregnancy management” and “labor management” might be used.

With great love and gratitude to my teacher in the field of the protection of basic human needs in childbirth, the amazing “peaceful warrior” Hilda Garst and her family, as well as to caring and active mothers of Sardinia, and in the name of the Miracle of childbirth worldwide!

L'akesh Ala K'in! Namaste! Grazie Tanto!

Group photo from conference Wonderfull view Spectatefull sea view Two experts together

The photos are the courtesy of Svetlana Demianova-Ponomarenko’s personal files.
Original text: Объединение матерей ради сохранения континуума первичного здоровья детей: «молочная нить» от Украины до Италии

References
[1] The conference programme “Breastfeeding in Sardinia and in the World: Restoring the Continuum” might be downloaded here
[2] The wonderful video greeting of Dr. Jack Newman (Canada) can be viewed in English with Italian subtitles at YouTube
[3] You are welcome to download the PDF presentation of the author of the article in English here and in Italian here
[4] Millennial Gaia Statue - Mother Earth at amazon.com
[5] You're welcome to watch the video report titled "World Breastfeeding Week: The Network of Activists is Increasing" of the regional TV Sardinian (Italy) channel Videolina (October 6-7, 2018) in Italian here
[6] Personal e-correspondence with Hilda Garst

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