Up at 3:00 a.m. with my 1-month-old firstborn baby, I found myself . . . drowning.
I was completely exhausted with no sleep and a parasite (albeit a cute parasite) whose days and nights were breastfeeding marathons with intermittent breaks to cry and spit up, only to work up an appetite and make room for more milk.
It was in this moment, reaching my breaking point, when I realized that the tornado ripping me apart that night was not coming from my baby, but from inside of me. A whirlwind of “shoulds” and “shouldn’ts” left me chipped away to nothing.
“Good babies sleep through the night.” “Don’t hold him too much or you’ll spoil him.” “If you bring him into your bed, you’ll never get him out.”
This tornado of foreign voices left me dizzy and disconnected from my baby and myself. It was in this place of desperation that I surrendered and my world was never the same. In that singular moment I realized that in my zealousness to do everything “right” I became lost. There is no way to win when you are held hostage by other peoples’ truths.
I spent the coming years studying the entire body of scientific research on early childhood, parenting, and attachment to discern the learned information we can use to inform our parenting choices from the passively inherited baggage so commonly passed around.
I had nearly two decades of professional experience working in early childhood and college degrees in child psychology. I was totally qualified for this mothering gig yet I was lost until surrendering to the bond with my own baby unlocked the piece I had been missing, which lies at the heart of every interaction with a little one: connection.
My relationship with my little one grew deeper and stronger every day as I took advantage of every moment as an opportunity to connect. My goal shifted from controlling my child for the sake of an outcome to combining that researched knowledge with my innate maternal wisdom. Before long, I was glowing in harmony with my child.
But this raising heart full children thing is bigger than me. And it’s even bigger than you. The world is plagued by the effects of disconnection: anxiety, depression, aggression (and the list goes on). We have to start a revolution to create the future we want for our children and that starts right here, today, when you give yourself the support you need to set your compass to connection with your child. Every interaction, every conversation, every choice, either stepping toward or away from a world of peace and love.
My professional drive with a career in family therapy, built on years working directly with families in early childhood, fueled by philanthropic passion, met training in infant massage, and blended perfectly with my personal life as a mother to yield a platform for me to authentically support other families while living a family-integrated lifestyle.
Sage Parenting was born in 2008 with a mission to change the world, one heart full child at a time.
Sage refers to nature and wisdom. Your natural, loving bond is the core, the foundation of trust from which all else springs. Wisdom lies in making well-informed, conscious choices. Where these two meet, is Sage Parenting: where nature meets nurture.
Rachel Rainbolt is an insightful, nurturing, genuine, and badass parenting sage who empowers gentle parents to confidently connect with their adorably exasperating little ones through her books, classes, and coaching.