Mothering is the method humans use for setting up crucial components of humanness in our species including: our individual wellness (both mental and physical) and our capacity for intimate relationships. Through gestation, birthing, feeding, loving and caring for babies and children, mothers naturally program their young to be ready for the environment they will find themselves in once they’re born. As adults we continue to rely on that early-established reservoir of wellness and our early-established relational patterns for our entire lives, and we draw on those things to create ourselves, to make whatever contribution we ultimately make in this world.
It is our earliest experience with our mothers, beginning in utero, that launches our nervous system toward adulthood. We are profoundly affected and created by our earliest environment – and that is our mother. So an embryo that implants in a woman already exists in an environment. And that environment is the emotional, physical, biological and spiritual world of its mother. An infant’s environment continues to be its mother for many, many months postpartum. Clearly this environment, this mother, is deeply influential in the life of her baby. What the mother is feeling, witnessing and reacting to in her life is all experienced by her baby.
From the first moment of existence, babies are being shaped for the world they’re about to enter into - and that shaping occurs through an exposure to the world as experienced by their mother. Our world needs to support new mothers exquisitely. We need to create a common understanding of the value and in fact the sacredness of motherhood; it is through women, through mothers, that we all come into existence. We are individually and collectively so impacted by how our mothers care for us – and similarly, the women and mothers of our species are so impacted by how we care for them.