Co-founder of Mamaheaven and the first port of call for mothers enquiring about the retreat, Tania Smith lives in Brighton with her two daughters. She is also the creator of the Mamaheaven goodie bag and has a passion for all things organic.
She works for Youtous www.youtous.co.uk – alternative ante-natal classes for expectant parents. She specializes in post-natal advice – care of mother and baby, successful recovery during the babymoon, baby’s health, nappy choices and issues surrounding vaccinations. As well as her regular work with groups she also takes private one-to-one classes as a post-birth educator.
She has also studied psychology, massage, beauty therapy and FET (Family Effectiveness Training) and is currently training to be a breastfeeding counselor.
I have often thought I should write a testimonial about my time at Mamaheaven. For the purpose here, I will keep it brief because to detail the ripples sent out into my life after that long weekend would mean I’d need to write an essay.??
I arrived at Mamaheaven with my fourth baby in my arms. I was good at this Mothering thing by then having been in the throes of it for almost a decade! From the outside I think I gave off a good impression of knowing what I was doing and how I wanted to do it. However, underneath all of that front, I was struggling. Not with my babies so much but life was hard. I was about to split with my children’s father and I didn’t know what I was going to do about it all.
??The women at Mamaheaven create a space where you can just drop down and let go of being capable for a while. It is such a blessed relief! I had never had any of my children cared for by anyone else and to my surprise it was easy to leave my lovely boy in the creche and take time to stretch out in the yoga room and get reacquainted with my body. The body work and talking circles were amazing and just being fed with delicious, carefully thought out food was such a treat.
??However, the real magic for me was realising that I had something of value to offer to the world outside of being a mother. I love my children. They are everything to me and that hasn’t changed but what I am has changed. I remember sitting an observing the Mamaheaven team and wishing that I had a tribe of women like that in my life. They were passionate about mothering and to them it seemed that meant supporting women to be everything they can be. I was totally rocked by that. ??
I left Mamaheaven with the seeds of a way to grow a new way of being and a renewed confidence that maybe I was more than enough (instead of not feeling good enough). I have watered and nurtured those seeds over the last few years training in what I am passionate about. Now my baby is no longer a baby, I am able to work towards getting the work I do out into the world. I also have my tribe of women in my life now and I never thought life would be so lovely.
??Thank you for those seeds Mamaheaven. I think the work you do is so important and so necessary for new mothers. It is such a gift to have a chance for mother to be looked after for a while instead of having to do all of the looking after. I am so glad I came along that Autumn weekend.??
(note to you lovely Mamaheaven women- ??It turned into quite an essay after all! I can rewrite if you need it shorter. You can edit if you feel it would help the testimonial read better! Maybe take out the first paragraph at least?)
— Zoe Mason, Herefordshire