You are listening to a podcast from JoetteCalabrese.com
where nationally certified American homeopath, public speaker, and author, Joette Calabrese,
shares her passion for helping families stay healthy through homeopathy and nutrient-dense
nutrition. Jendi: Hello, this is Jendi and I’m here
once again with Joette Calabrese. Today, we are going to talk about being a mighty mom
and grandmom. And I personally love that idea, and I imagine that you, Joette, are not going
to be discussing mothers working out and getting rippling muscles, right?
Joette: Well, yes and no. And I don’t mean physically working out but I do mean muscles.
We’re talking about learning to flex the brain muscle and more importantly, the muscle
of the will. Jendi: You mean willpower?
Joette: Yeah, but it sounds a little trite, that term willpower. I want to talk about
having guts, spunk, and moxie. And I’ve said this before but I’ll say it again and
again, that living this kind of lifestyle takes courage. But I have some rules, and
I found that if I abide by them, they rarely fail me. So let me give you some rules. We
must defy the practices of our peers. This doesn’t mean you become their foil. It doesn’t
mean you forget polite society and bash them down with your ideas. It means you find a
way to speak pleasantly and with respect and then direct yourself in your own path.
And the second rule is you must question, even challenge, every idea that impacts your
family’s health. This most often comes from pediatricians, other doctors, media, and of
course, the rest of society that has profited from these ideas emanating from these sources.
So this group might come in the form of in-laws and neighbors, too. And then the third rule
that I adhere to and I urge others to do is at least question, usually challenge, and
in many instances, downright defy. The world is filled with assumptions that are false
and it’s up to you to tether your sails and set your family off on a different tack.
So the upshot is that you must, and I mean must, set yourself on a path that is directly
in conflict with what you see around you. The more you see an idea around you, the more
you should resist it. Jendi: That seems a little bit counterintuitive.
Joette: Well, the reason that I say this is because I believe most ideas are wrong,
or at least, need refining. For example, read the billboards in your locale and whatever
they say, do the opposite. Common horse sense is not found on billboards, in magazines,
in doctors’ offices, on TV. Instead, those are marketing tools for an entity, either
an industry or a government program trying to convince you of something.
Jendi: And there is no doubt that the internet has opened up our knowledge base and we can
find out several sides of an issue through the internet.
Joette: Yes, yes, we can. But it’s useless unless you put it to good use. I know I’ve
said this again and again and I’ll do until I have barnacles hanging on me. You must do
your homework. You must look up every drug and procedure that a doctor recommends and
I guarantee, he has not done this. But you, my friends, will do this because before you
put a fragment of any stuff that is derived from an industry in your or your child’s
mouth, you must do your homework, or you must submit to a test that is unnecessary. So there’s
no doubt that we’re smarter now, we mothers. There it is, all the information we’d ever
need, and yet, most people don’t even think about using it to its capacity, I mean, the
internet. Not you though. You do your homework. And how do I know this? And I’m not talking
just to Jendi. I’m talking to those who are listening. Because I speak to those who
follow me every single day. Jendi: And the internet is a wonderful research
tool. Joette: Yes, but without the master behind
the tools, nothing is possible. So remember, the internet is only a marketing tool for
big industry and government. So you must sniff out the answers in coy ways, because we as
mothers and grandmothers and those who care for others are the masters of our and our
family’s lives, and that takes a certain posture. You have to make a decision. Like
if you decide you want to become a lawyer, you have to commit to taking the LSATs and
commit to going to law school. I mean, it’s pretty simple. If you decide you want to become
a concert pianist, you must pledge to practicing piano for hours daily. It’s that simple.
Whatever you want to do, whatever you want to accomplish, it must be chosen, focused
upon, and gone after myopically without even a glance back, regardless of others’ opinions.
Jendi: And that’s how we all move forward and learn things in any pursuit.
Joette: Well, that’s right. And the question always is, “Are we comfortable allowing
the current to take us along, or are we made of the stuff that pushes us in the direction
we know we ought to follow?” Jendi: I think we all agree that we ought
to sometimes buck the system but that can be hard to do when you’re a mom, especially
of a little baby or a new mom, and when the doctor tells you to take an antibiotic or
something and you don’t know what to do for sure. You might be scared for your child
and you just simply do it knowing that the antibiotic is not going to do any better than
the last one but not knowing what else to do.
Joette: Yes, but you know, it’s only hard to buck the system if you’ve not educated
yourself. Once you know better because you’ve done your homework, that gives you confidence.
The more you learn, the more confidence you acquire, the firmer your footing, and so on.
And more importantly, once you learn how to treat that illness with homeopathy instead
of the drug, you gain indelible confidence one illness at a time. Then you become the
expert. Jendi: That can be a daunting feat.
Joette: Well, Jendi, you and I have these discussions every week, don’t we? But the
most satisfying and most important, the reason you’ve become a mother has nothing, and
I mean nothing, to do with compliancy and everything to do with your legacy, responsibility,
and integrity. Jendi: Yes. And of course, sometimes doing
what you personally think is best can be difficult, especially if your family doesn’t agree,
like your in-laws, your friends, or even your spouse.
Joette: Okay. Well, let’s talk about spouses. This is a concept that I’ve taken on through
the years and I’ve espoused to younger women. It’s most important that your spouse and
you share the same philosophy. In fact, it should have been discussed before marriage.
The problem is that most marriages occur outside of ill health and it’s often when a sick
child comes along that inspires the move to take this on your own. That’s when the spouses
must begin a different kind of a journey. Jendi: It’s like no one gives a thought
about the kind of healthcare the family is going to practice until something happens.
And age comes into play, too, right? Joette: Yes, I believe that’s right. I
have a philosophy about parenting and marriage and I see the opposite of this philosophy
played out every day, and it’s this. This is my philosophy. Marriage is like a corporation.
There are department heads for each division. And each division has its specialty of capabilities
– the marketing department, the finance department, the personnel department. They
all have their responsibilities and specialties. And each department head is expected to know
their craft inside and out to keep up with their craft so that they are always on top
of their game. They’re the experts. So let me give you an example. When I worked
at a TV station years ago, we had a comptroller who used to hang around the marketing and
sales department way too much. I was in marketing and sales. Granted, we were more fun than
the pencil pushers in her department, but when she came in for her daily visit, she’d
often put her two cents into the way our department was run. What became obvious in no time was
that she was out of her element. Her suggestions were off-kilter because she wasn’t a marketing
or salesperson. She was a number cruncher. She didn’t live the life daily. She hadn’t
read a single book on the subject, nor had she gone to college for it, nor taken a weekend
seminar on it. She had nothing but an opinion. Her expertise was in accounting. Now, that
was something she could sink her teeth into. Her entire life was spent studying and accruing
knowledge on that subject. Jendi: And probably equally as important
is the fact that when she was nosing around in your department, she was inadvertently
neglecting her own work. Joette: Well, that’s right. It took our
department head to finally put a stop to this less-than-welcome daily interference.
Jendi: So I think I might know where you’re heading with this with spouses.
Joette: Well, if you know, then our listeners will also know, too, I hope. So marriage,
yes, of course, is the same. When a woman gets pregnant, everything in her life turns
to that, everything she eats, lives, and breathes, everything there is about the baby. She reads
constantly. She ponders. She daydreams. She researches about babies’ health, what’s
good, what’s bad, what kind of food, supplements, exercise is important. She talks incessantly
about it with her friends who have children. She deliberates with her mother and her neighbors,
and everyone offers advice and she soaks it all in. She researches all about the baby
– birth, wellness, etc., on the internet. She’s consumed by the baby and its wellbeing.
What does the father do? He takes on the protective responsibility for his forthcoming family.
He works harder to make certain that the finances are in place. He makes certain that the investments
he makes have longevity. He gets the house repairs in order, make sure the car is safe,
asks his buddies about insurance, then starts researching the best way to protect his new
family. It all makes sense. Each parent takes on their roles and often with alacrity and
aplomb. And once the baby comes, mom is literally attached to the baby with nursing, staying
up at night with every sound. And during her waking hours, she generally is reading or
at least, referring to books and sites that will teach her to become a better mom. Dad’s
at work making sure the family is provided for.
Now, I know we’re going to get rebuttals to this on the blog about how women are perfectly
capable of making a living and men are perfectly capable of taking care of children, but I
offer no apologies. What I’m describing here is the way it more often falls together
than any other. No matter how capable the woman was before the baby, she could be the
comptroller of a Fortune 500 corporation, once that baby arrives, she changes in a profound
way. It’s pure biology. She wants to be with her child as much as possible, all day,
all night. And suddenly, the career she strove for for decades seems trite. Am I describing
all women? No, but I believe it’s the majority of them. And this is one of my major complaints
with Western lifestyles that women rarely factor in marriage and babies into their plans.
It becomes a distant event that isn’t in the least bit focused upon in their teens
and 20s and, of course, in college. But I divert here. This pet peeve of mine is something
that is a subject for another blog. Jendi: I hadn’t thought about that much
before now but I think colleges don’t really talk about marriage or motherhood, the two
big M words. Joette: Right, yeah. It’s approached like
a side dish of scalloped potatoes or something instead of the main dish of pot roast that
actually is in many a woman’s life. So let’s get back to marriage as a corporation theory.
So when the roof leaks, the dad usually swings into gear and talks to his buddies. He checks
out roof products online. He decides what kind of tiles he should replace them with.
Or he calls around for contractors. He’s the buildings and grounds department head.
When the mortgage rates go down, it’s usually the dad who has done his research to find
out if a better rate can be secured and then goes at it. He becomes the buildings and ground
department head and the comptroller. So when baby gets an ear infection and mom
wants to use essential oils, homeopathy, or whatever and not subject the baby to an antibiotic
because she has studied the possibilities for many months, if not years, she has made
herself into an expert, just like the dad making him into the family expert on his subjects.
So even if she has not researched, her hormones dictate in most cases she’s best suited
for taking care of the ills of the children – the food they eat, the nutrition they
take in daily, and the nightly care. After all, who does the grocery shopping? Who’s
preparing the meals? In most cases, she’s best suited for the job as he is for his.
And so mom becomes the personnel department and health and welfare.
Jendi: And that’s a very traditional position to put out on the internet and I think it’s
a good position but I’m sure you’re going to get some disagreements in your comments
on the blog. Joette: Oh, I couldn’t care less. Being
politically correct is not only not my concern but it’s so passé. I call it ever so ‘90s.
And this is 2015, for crying out loud. We have learned something since then. Society
needs to get with the program as far as I’m concerned. This is not your women study class
here. This is biology, something that’s been conspicuously missing from those angry
classes in the first place. I remember those women studies classes. I took them back in
the ‘70s, and nothing has changed. This is the real world. When was the last time
you met a lactating father, for crying out loud?
Jendi: I don’t think I ever met one and I don’t think I ever will.
Joette: I hope not. So when dad spends hours researching the roof tile and decides to take
time with his buddies in the industry or his father about vapor barriers and he concludes
that he’ll do this or that with the roof, and then if mom chimes in and says, “Hmm,
I don’t think that’s what we ought to do,” she’s sticking her nose into the
buildings and grounds department’s decision without the requisite research, inclination,
and effort it takes to make a good decision. And if she gets too involved, then her health
and welfare department suffers, too. Jendi: Yes. And I think an argument would
be that the child does belong to both of them. Doesn’t the father have the right to ask
questions? Joette: Well, certainly. If his understanding
is unclear though, if it hasn’t been fleshed out by his own research and study, then it’s
terribly inefficient and undermines the ability of the health and welfare department’s confidence.
And certainly, both can study together. But asking both to do the same work twice seems
a little bit of a waste of precious time, and time is of the essence. It’s an important
commodity in a family. And when you’re running a corporation, or more importantly, a family,
productivity, effectiveness, and efficiency matters. For if not there, then where else
would it matter? It all starts with the family. In fact, everything starts with the family.
Family is the team. And an extra quarterback is not only superfluous, it’s conflicting
to the success of that team. Jendi: So you were actually using nice words
to say that the father should just butt out. Joette: Well, not actually butt out but he
needs to trust his wife. Isn’t that why he married her, because he trusts her and
holds her in high regard? Well, of course, all bets are off that this is not the state
of the marriage, but it certainly is the goal of a good marriage.
Jendi: So basically, what you’re saying is that when the mom spends hours, weeks,
years learning how to treat a fever without drugs, or how to implement her knowledge in
using homeopathy or any other method for that matter, the dad ought to step back and trust
her. Joette: Well, yes, unless she’s incompetent,
completely incompetent. He needs to bow to her knowledge and dedication. That leaves
him to pursue his areas of expertise. And that’s what makes a marriage whole and efficient,
as far as I’m concerned. Jendi: Can it be the other way around? Can
the father take over the healthcare role? Joette: Well, certainly. And after teaching
homeopathy for 30 years to thousands of students, I have to admit, however, that in my recollection,
I’ve had maybe five men join in my classes. Online, we have tens of thousands of social
media correspondences and the same holds true there as well. I’ve learned that women are
more interested in taking this job seriously and are better at nurturing while men are
generally better at protecting. And yes, it’s certainly a generalization but I don’t for
a minute think that it’s our culture to blame. Instead, I see, as I said earlier,
that it’s human biology. That’s why I believe this pattern spans across the globe.
Jendi: What about if the father is worried, really worried about counting on homeopathy
or nutrition or essential oils? Joette: Well, I have an answer that includes
two parts of this. The first part is that if it is a concern, he needs to do his own
homework then, like what his wife did, and to the same extent. He needs to spend hours
daily thinking about it, looking up solutions, calling friends, just like what she did, taking
the kids to the chiropractor or the doctor, talking to school administrators, asking his
mother and grandmother for advice. Jendi: So do you have much faith in this
happening? Joette: No, I haven’t. I can pretty much
guarantee that that’s not going to happen. I mean, it does occasionally, but generally
speaking, not to the same degree. In my experience, the best way for men to catch up with enough
information so that they can let go and let their wives do the job at hand, instead of
asking them to read books, I’ve learned through the years that they won’t do it,
so the alternative, the fastest way to get him up to enough speed that he gets what the
mom wants him to get, is for the mom to amass videos on the subject, then you barter with
them. So from one mother to another, I’ll let you in on a little secret. You make a
big batch of popcorn, whisper sweet nothings in his ear, and promise him the world if he’ll
sit through the video and the subject at hand, a video of, say, the value of homeopathy,
the importance of nutrition. That is the way to get men to learn.
Jendi: That sounds like a big project. Joette: Yeah. And what in life has any value
that doesn’t have a big commitment attached to it? I can think of nothing that comes easy
in life that’s of any value. It takes a vow to be the best we can be.
Jendi: And also, if he has a long commute, he might be interested in listening to some
podcasts. Joette: That’s right. And why not this
one? Jendi: So can you give us a peek into how
you became accomplished in homeopathy? Joette: Well, I’m an accomplishment freak.
I want to learn more. I always want to know more. I want to experience more. At first,
when my first child was an infant, I already knew how to make many foods from scratch.
It was my interest since my early 20s. But then, I wanted to know how to find wild foods
on my property, how to make herbal medicines, how to find the most nutrient dense foods
available for the least amount of money. It was like a game. It became a compulsion, kind
of an inner competition. And my pregnancies and births thrust me forward into an even
higher gear. So then, once I learned of the power of homeopathy, I wanted to know how
to treat every little problem my baby might suffer. I wanted to know how to treat first
aid with homeopathy, infections with homeopathy, emotional and mental conditions with homeopathy.
I wanted to be the expert. I did not want a condescending pediatrician telling me what
to do. I kicked my mothering act up a notch. So I want to know every homeopathic medicine
for every ill. That’s why even today with my kids grown and out of our home and now
in my ‘60s, I travel to India where homeopathy is used as a mainstay of medicine. In fact,
I’m going there again in about a month and a half.
Jendi: And I think this is what many of us mothers think but we wonder how to get it
all done. Like for me, I have a book on it and I know stuff on your website and then
it’s just hard to cram it in to my schedule. And also, I wonder what others are going to
think about this. Joette: Right. Well, when you become a mother,
and even if you never do, and you’re taking care of others, animals, livestock, etc.,
but most importantly when you become the caregiver, you must not care what others think. That’s
the first thing. I decided a while ago that I don’t care about what kind of an opinion
others have about me. Some women say this happens in menopause or after menopause. I
actually think it happened even earlier in my life. So if you don’t agree with my position
on medicine or traditional values about how to take care of a family, the importance of
a mother being at home to take care of her children, about the importance of going to
church or synagogue, I couldn’t care less. And I don’t mind if that causes us to part
ways. In fact, it’s even better that way. Each person needs to find their path.
But my posture is arrow pointed in one direction – the importance of the family and of the
mother being the nucleus of the child’s and family’s healthcare. And accomplishing
that goal is after all I’ve examined can’t be done fully if you depend on large companies
to make decisions for you, and a reminder that that’s what using drugs is all about.
It’s a fierce and mighty instinct in me and in all of us. I’m not alone. Most mothers
and grandmothers come equipped with it naturally, but they need to beware because there are
factions that are perfectly happy allowing mothering and grandparenting to become a spectator’s
sport, of allowing mothering to take on a mediocre hue.
Jendi: It sounds like you would like to change the world.
Joette: Well, a girl can dream, I guess. Jendi: Lots of food for thought there. I
guess this is across the board with many industries, right?
Joette: Well, when we follow the road of least resistance and we just say, “Well,
I don’t have time and I can’t do this,” then we’re just going to follow along with
an industry that calls us something in particular – customers for an industry, whichever industry
is behind it, the education industry, the medical industry, the food industry. Don’t
think, folks, for a minute that someone hasn’t thought through every decision you make for
your family and self and determine the best way to get you to comply to their ways of
persuasion. That’s what Madison Avenue is all about. I know because I’ve been in the
world of marketing. And how often you get your child a flu shot is orchestrated down
to the month – what the doctor says if you don’t comply, the demeanor he takes on,
the nurse’s attitudes when you resist. It’s orchestrated. And by the way, it’s orchestrated
using human emotions. Guilt and fear are the most powerful emotions when it comes to parenting.
Watch carefully. Observe. Once you discover this, you’ll see it being used again and
again. Jendi: If we think about it, we all know
that this is the way things are. Do you really think this is the essence of how humans behave?
Joette: Well, we must understand that rarely are people and entities out there protecting
your interest. People can be nice but they’re protecting their own interests. So as soon
as I hear that this or that is for the sake of “the children”, I prick up my ears.
The words “the children” are used in marketing campaigns and educational schemes that have
nothing whatsoever to do with the welfare of children.
Jendi: So if we hear the word children, we naturally kind of join in the empathy?
Joette: Yeah. You can’t help yourself. It’s a powerful word. I’ll never forget
a friend reporting to me years ago that when she was in labor with her first child, and
she was in labor for several hours, that her smarmy doctor was pressuring her to allow
him to chemically induce her, and she was resisting it. Finally, he said, “Do you
want this baby or not?” What? What kind of a thing is that to say to a mother in labor?
What possible meaning was behind that? Guilt for not wanting the baby to be born? This
was the guy that all my friends went to for their births. They all thought he was the
bee’s knees. Can anyone imagine that? That is beyond depressing.
Jendi: And if I were a paranoid person, I’d say it almost sounds like a conspiracy.
Joette: No. I’ll be honest, Jendi. I don’t believe it’s a conspiracy. I might add that
this has nothing to do with capitalism, too, and everything to do with human nature at
its worst. The same behavior is witnessed, only to even a worse degree, in Cuba – I’ve
said this before – and the Soviet Union and China. Don’t think for a single minute
that it’s better somewhere else. Government officials are usually worse in these situations
than those in the free market because they don’t need to satisfy customers. And with
government rules and mandates, we haven’t any choices. You can, however, decline to
take the antibiotic or whatever is being encouraged or sold to you.
Jendi: So to wrap up this podcast, can you give us maybe some encouragement?
Joette: Yes. I don’t want to leave us on a down because it sounds a little sad. Instead,
I want to encourage everyone. Allow me to share information that I’ve gleaned by being
in full-time practice for 20 years, and from studying homeopathy for 29, and from traveling
all over the US and Canada and to India to build my knowledge base. I offer a lot of
information on homeopathy and how to use it for free. And yes, I also sell courses for
those who want to delve deeper. But I urge you to take advantage of my free information
as often as you need it on this blog. So my closing words are this: Don’t engage
in average anything – mediocre movies, mediocre literature, unexceptional magazines, one-of-the-mill
medicine, unremarkable food, conformist conduct. Low-level anything is an act of compliancy,
compliancy with our innate laziness which, by the way, we all possess, compliancy with
our low-level anything. Instead, pursue the good. And I want to read this in our final
words here, the great words found in Philippians. It says, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever
things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things
are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report, if there be any
virtue and if there be any praise, think on these things.”
Jendi: And those words are great words to live by. Thank you so much, Joette.
Joette: My thanks to you, too, Jendi. Thank you for listening to this podcast with
Joette Calabrese. If you liked it, please share it with your friends. To learn more
and find out if homeopathy is a good fit in your health strategy, visit JoetteCalabrese.com
and schedule a free 15-minute conversation with Joette herself.