The value of the Child’Space Method is reflected in the quality of the connection it brings to the parent-baby relationship.
There is presently extensive research and interest around attachment and attunement. Parents make careful choices about the ways in which they give birth, nurture and provide care for their child, but in our society it is often assumed that the parent-baby connection is a natural phenomenon, not needing to be explored or developed.
As a mother and a Child’Space Method practitioner, I believe this is not the case.
We, in the so-called developed world, no longer live in situations, which encourage the parenting, and caring for infants, to be a shared experience amongst the wider community.
Many of us have not held, cared for or settled a baby which was not our own. Nor have many adults personally witnessed the various stages of infant development and the depth of the parent-baby relationship.
Although I recognise that there is an undeniably intuitive process in caring for an infant, I strongly believe that this is something that needs further attention.
This cultivation of parent-baby connection is at the heart of the Child’Space Method.
I am a mother of two young children and had the unique opportunity of having a ‘Child’Space baby’ in that my second child was born during the course of my training. I was able to observe infant development unfolding before my eyes, and to integrate everything that I was learning and experiencing into our shared existence.
What a blessing this was for our family!
One of the key components of the Child’Space Method is getting to know and appreciate the ‘whole’ child, through the simple yet powerful means of observation. I spent time observing my daughter from the moment she was born. The way in which she moved and communicated at such an early age, as well as the kind of input she welcomed into her experience and that for which she had less tolerance. I found she had preferences for the pacing and rhythm of our interactions, the way she liked to hear my voice, the different positions she liked to be held in at different times.
Of course, like any baby, there were times where she became unsettled but the difference was that there was an empathetic objectivity in my mothering. I found so many options for responding to and meeting her needs, which was so empowering for me as a parent.
We used touch, movement and song through body mapping several times a day from the early weeks. I quickly became aware that she had one hip that felt tighter than the other and I was a little concerned.
By using the Child’Space methodology, instead of my attention being focussed on ‘fixing the problem’ of the hip, we were able to lovingly and playfully explore the hip in relation to the movement of her whole self.
Through the use of proprioceptive touch, she began to develop increased awareness and a change in muscle tone. I was able to guide her to move in ways that first supported her pattern of movement so that eventually she could experience greater freedom and new options.
My daughter and I continued our connection through touch, play and movement throughout her journey of early development. She began to love and recognise the body mapping so much that soon she began to tap herself and then me, mapping my body!
Milestones came in ‘normal’ time but what surprised me was the quality, the fluidity and the repertoire of her movement. Even now as a 2 year old she will express herself most authentically, confidently and joyfully through movement. She approaches new toddler challenges of jumping, climbing, balancing and riding a trike with confidence, adaptability and a willingness to engage in a process of trial and error - which is inherent in self-initiated / organic learning.
I firmly believe that the Child’Space Method gives parents and babies the incredible gift of connection and sets the positive framework for a lifetime of learning. This is something that I think every parent should pursue, and is, of course, a wonderful start to the journey of life for a new and receptive human being.