JW and her husband met in high school and have been together for eleven years. They have three children, L1 (5 in September), L2 (3 in August), and L3 (born in December). She has done many different jobs for Natural Parents Network, including working on our social media team and as one of our Cooking Naturally editors, where she has shared some very tasty recipes with us, like this Mouthwatering Fresh Fruit Crumble. Her husband, Mike, also wrote for NPN about how they have shared their love of good food with their children.
JW was raised in a way where fear and disrespect were used as parenting tools, and she did not want that for her children. JW and Mike’s parenting goal is to parent following logical ideals and and mutual respect for their long-term familial relationship. “Breastfeeding, babywearing, child-led weaning, and so on were all things that just made sense to me [because] humanity as a whole came this far with them,” she says. The successful homebirth of their second child, after the traumatic C-section birth of her first, was a defining moment for her as a parent. “I gained a pride in my parenting choices — confidence that I really did know what was best for me and my family, even if my choices might not be the same as the next person.”
JW started blogging originally on MySpace, where she kept a diary of her first pregnancy. She continues to blog because it fills her need for a creative space, somewhere she can stretch her thoughts. JW says if you click on a random post on her blog, you would probably see a picture of her breastfeeding. “Breastfeeding may take up a lot of time, but I have learned to incorporate it with other activites, so even when the post may not be about breastfeeding directly, the chances are still good you will see it happening anyways.”
Strangely, none of her three favorite posts include a picture of her nursing:
- I hereby dub thee “Intacterrorists,” her first controversial post, written in response to comments made against a family whose son died after being circumcised.
- One of her Tell All Tuesday posts, where she shared about her experience with prenatal depression, a condition which is not discussed very often.
- Just Another Mom, and That is Enough, a post she wrote in response to TIME magazine’s controversial Attachment Parenting cover. She loves that she “was able to take a negative situation and use it as a starting point for examining [her] own world.”
Mike works nights, so JW gets up with the kids, feeds everyone breakfast, and pumps milk for a friend who is unable to make enough for her child. Then they read, play, and do chores until Daddy wakes up and they all head out of the house for an afternoon together. They head home in time for Mike to go to work, and have dinner, bath, and bedtime. As a family they especially love going to the beach. “Somehow, it is one of the most relaxing, connection-creating activities we do!” She also makes time to do Zumba, spend time with her mama friends, and have periodic dates with Mike.
She joined NPN with the goal of spreading the word about Natural Parenting, but never expected to find a new community for support, and even new friends she chats with on a regular basis. JW has always had a passion for working with kids, especially teens. She dreams of working with teen moms to build up their “knowledge of the power they have to give them a good birth experience and make good decisions for their child.”
Thank you for doing your part to share the word about Natural Parenting, JW. You are always a huge inspiration to me, and I feel like a better mother for knowing you.
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