As Virginia Woolf wrote,
"A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction."
When you become a mama -- especially a nursing, co-sleeping mama -- if you are home alone with your offspring, no room is ever your own.
I am privileged enough to live near my mother, who watches LB as often as she can, which helps me to have a "room of my own" a couple times a week. Just these few hours have allowed me the time and space to completely overhaul my offerings to the world.
I already have an in-home sitter waiting in the wings for when I can afford to pay her a living wage. I am dedicated to paying her a living wage, as she is a mama as well, and I wholeheartedly believe in the dignity of being a devoted and passionate employee -- which requires that you be able to pay your bills! (Damn, how hard is that??)
This fund is completely contribute-what-you-wish. I have selected to use Gumroad rather than Patreon or another "pay-a-creator" services because I do not want there to be a paywall between what I write and anyone who wants to read. That may mean I "earn" less every month, but it feels like an integrity issue for me. I want to share openly and honestly about the crazy sh*t that happens when you birth a baby -- human or book or business -- and I also want to ensure that I hold fast to my ideals as a feminist, womanist, and human who has lived at-or-just-below the poverty line for most of my adult life.
Yes, it is expensive and exhausting having an infant. And yes, I want to write more and more so that I can share this experience with other mamas and healers and witches and thinkers. And yes, having passive income that is not directly tied to "service hours" will allow me to free up the time to write.
But this is truly an issue of community. If you want to lend a hand, I would LOVE THAT. But if this doesn't call out to you, no stress. I hope you still read what I'm writing. I hope you'll participate in the #postpartumhumanity dialogue. I hope you'll reach out with your own stories.
No matter what, I want you to have access to what you need to grow and heal. Just as I want my son to have healthy, loving access to his mama all day, erryday. It's why I'm parenting in the ways that I am and why I've chosen to trim down my offerings in the ways that I have.
Whatever you feel called to contribute, it will be received with so much gratitude. I'll be praying for you specifically and talking about all these amazing supporters with my son.
Thank you for reading this missive and for honoring the struggle. You're a f*cking champion.
With lots of love and snuggles,
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Survival and health in the twenty-first century will require innovation and flexibility. Creativity is the key to unlocking these qualities. We must honor it in ourselves and in each other. We must honor the means which make it possible and protect ourselves from those phenomena which threaten to shut down this basic life force. Our very future depends on it.
- Anodea Judith, PhD, Wheels of Life