Laura lives in the Midwest with her husband and four kids aged 6 years to 7 months. She is a stay at home mom who teaches twice a week. She and her husband met when they were both on vacation with their families at age 15, and they’ve now been together more then half their lives. She blogs at Walden Mommy and Family.
Laura’s calls her mother “The Original Hippie.” She practiced natural birth, extended breastfeeding, cooked from scratch, cloth diapered, taught childbirth classes, and was a member of La Leche League. Her father was also a hands on parent despite working long hours and joining the military when she was 10. “When I speak of Natural Parenting being my culture, I am being literal. For me, the norm was that you prepared for a natural birth, breastfed, wore your baby and
co-slept. That’s how we were parented and how many of my friends were parented.”
Her defining moment as a parent was the premature birth of her third child. One of the reasons she blogs is to share her experience parenting a baby in the NICU and the PTSD she suffered afterward. She wants to “Erase the shame that goes with postpartum mental disorders. A study released recently says that many NICU parents suffer from PTSD, depression, anxiety and more. I want there to be more awareness of that, to help people cope and realize that yes, it does get better.” Her favorite three posts are stories where she shares her struggles.
- How My Boob, My Baby and Myself Offended a Parish. Her struggle to find a way to respect her new parish’s culture, while still being able to teach Catechism classes and take care of her high needs baby. She is proud of the respectful and supportive responses this post got from her readers.
- Six Months. From her first blog; what her life looked like six months after the premature birth of her son. “Six months from now, we will have cake and ice cream. People will sing happy birthday and give him presents. It will be a celebration of one year of life and living, because it wasn’t that long ago that many babies born at 35 weeks didn’t make it.”
- Cole’s Birth Story. The story of the term birth of her fourth child. With support and carefully tending to her body and mind, she had an amazing, healing birth. She peacefully labored at home for hours and triumphantly delivered at the hospital.
Laura’s day starts at 6:30am, and usually doesn’t end until 11pm. Somehow in that time she takes care of 4 kids who all have different schedules, and she manages to keep her sanity. She and her husband have date nights in on a regular basis to help maintain their connection. She thinks that the best thing about parenting is that “Even if things don’t work out the way I planned or wanted, they still work out, and the result is often a million times better than if it had gone the way I wanted it to.” She says that the more she parents, the more she realizes she doesn’t know anything about parenting, but only about how to parent her kids.
Your life has given you so much wisdom Laura. Thank you for sharing it with us.