A family reunion of the heart

Shortly after I gave birth to my stillborn daughter Mia, my husband and I were given the difficult task of picking a place to scatter her ashes. And though this task was both tragic and morbid, we somehow found ourselves embracing it for what it was. We knew that this would be one of the only things we get to do for our daughter as her parents. All our other parental responsibilities that we so longingly dreamed about, were stolen from us. 

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Conscious Motherhood: My parenting philosophies

In this video I talk a little bit about some of the principles and values that really guide my husband and I in how we raise Reya.

Thank you so much for watching!

Love,

Malavika

Lessons from my first year of motherhood

Ever since Reya turned one in January, I had been meaning to share my thoughts and experiences of one year of motherhood. Since Mother’s day was just a few days ago, I thought I would sit down and recollect the peaks and valleys of this new life of mine.

And it is an absolutely new life for me. The day my baby was born, a mother was born too. It has not always been an easy journey. Motherhood has stretched me and grown me, and I will share with you my honest and uncensored feelings about some of the more challenging aspects of being a new parent too. Nevertheless, as deliriously exhausting as it is, this new phase of my life has been indescribably rewarding.

I have accompanied this blog post with some of my favourite mama-daughter photographs that Reya and I have taken together.

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I STARTED A YOUTUBE CHANNEL!

and….

I have been so nervous to take this step, and so nervous to share this here with you – but I hope you like it! I want to make videos for you about the things YOU care about and things that matter most to YOU – so please do let me know if you have any ideas or suggestions for videos you would like me to make. I promise I will do my best for you ❤ !

Love,

Malavika

ONE

My little girl,

Today we wake up in the morning as we always do, with kisses and cuddles and milk and giggles. But this morning is different, because today is your first birthday. You are ONE.

It is a quiet Monday morning, snow has fallen over night and has settled softly around our home, a pale white light leaks through the windows and spills onto us. Your warm body laying on my chest. I am home to you. And you are home to me now too. I remind you that your father is at work now but that he kissed your forehead and whispered “Happy birthday my 1 year old girl” into your ear while you slept, right before he left in the morning. We listen to your birthday song – forever young by Bob Dylan. You are still sleepy so you lay quietly on me while I pour all my love onto you as you get ready to greet the day. To greet your day. This is your day. Every day is.

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Landslide into 2019

I find myself stumbling rather ungracefully into the new year. I stepped back into my routines of daily life here in Toronto with a sudden thud. I feel out of sorts, and I just can’t seem to get a grip on anything. They say there are years that question and years that answer. 2018 was an answer. 2019 is a year of question, I can already feel it. Things feel unsettled and haphazard. I completed a mandalam of 40 days of shambavi maha mudra in the early new year. I had expected that it would bring me to a more centered and grounded space, and yet to be quite honest with you, everything feels blurry and confused. I have to believe that the practice gives me what I need most for my spiritual growth. The last time I had completed this mandalam, I discovered I was pregnant and then went on to lose my baby, which ended up being a significant and poignant, but no less beautiful occurrence in my life. Perhaps what I need most for my growth right now is a more potent dose of life, rather than something slow and grounded and centered. 

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Newborn Days with Reya

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My daughter turned 6 months two days ago. 6 months of her. My life feels almost unrecognizable now. Everything is new – for the both of us. I felt this was a good time to reflect on the days following her birth – a precious time of my life that was equally chaotic as it was sacred – imprinted into the fabric of my soul forever more.

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Reya’s Birth Story

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The last trimester of my pregnancy after loss was riddled with anxiety. I had never made it this far into pregnancy before. I thought to myself – if I can just make it to that point, the week where her sister died, and if things were still okay, then maybe I could finally relax. But instead, I felt a new layer of anxiety unearth itself around me, as I entered into parts of a pregnancy that I have never experienced before. With each day that passed, I fell deeper in love, and with each day that passed, I had more and more to lose. I was being seen at the high risk maternity clinic every week from 30 weeks, as we noticed that Reya’s growth was beginning to slow down. She had  dropped from the 11th centile to the 6th to the 4th and then to the 2nd. Our doctor let us know that the chances of making it to the full 40 weeks was highly unlikely, and that we should prepare for a premature delivery. But he sounded optimistic, and he told us that she was a good size to be born, and that preemie babies at this gestation tend to do very well.

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This ache and this healing

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When I was pregnant with Reya, I attended the high risk maternity clinic every 1-2 weeks. During one of these appointments, as I walked down the hallway, I saw that the door to one of the examination rooms was open. Inside, there was a couple; the woman was sobbing into her hands, her husband’s eyes were dark and wet, and he was holding her.

I felt that woman’s pain that day, and I will always feel her pain. Because I was her, not too long ago. And I am coming to realize that no matter how much time passes, I will never be too far from that pain. The pain of losing your child.

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For my daughter

 

 

Dear Reya,

 

As I write you this letter, you are 3 weeks old, and nestled up close to me. And I want to tell you something. I want to put pen to paper, and write down the beginning of your story. And your story begins with us. We are your parents. Your father is a kind man. He is loving and courageous and golden and true. He protects my heart and in so many ways, it is because of him that I am the woman I am today. And I am your mother. I don’t much know how I would describe myself, but I get the feeling I won’t have to. We have a lifetime of getting to know each other. Your father and I found a big love in our togetherness, and this is what you were made from, and are born into. 

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