I hope this email finds you so well. Listen to this email here!
Today marks the first day back to school for our family.
As I sit at my desk it is quiet and I am so grateful for undisrupted time to write to you, create, and to take care of all the things we do as moms.
I had a huge realization recently and thought I would share it with you.
It was about a week ago, it was getting late, and I was exhausted.
It had been a long mom kind of day.
I had been up super early that morning to make time to hike, grocery shop, and meditate all before the boys woke up.
They have been sleeping in all summer long, and the mornings were prime time to take care of myself.
On this particular evening all I could think about was getting into my comfy bed and closing my eyes.
I noticed myself longing for the quiet and calm that comes with everyone in their beds and fast asleep.
What an underrated gift and blessing that is, as a mother.
When my boys were young, the quiet and sleepy nights had always been something I knew I could rest in, mentally.
I would tell myself in the hardest of times that night would eventually come, where everyone was soothed and snoozing in the darkness.
As I'm flossing my teeth, I hear my youngest son, Ryder, get upset.
I could hear his tone and feel his energy as he began to anger and the words that quickly rolled off my lips were, "What's wrong?"
I heard something slam on the floor and an argument brewing.
"UGH! Not again, I'm so tired of this", said the narrator in my mind fully resisting what was happening.
I couldn't understand exactly what was going on, but I knew that something was moving in a direction that I didn't want it to go.
My energy reserves were dwindling, and I just wanted it to stop.
I heard my eldest, Ryland, begin to do what we call, "poke the bear".
Ryder is the bear and Ryland pokes him.
It's not a fun game, it's actually my least favorite game.
It gets so old.
I spoke louder, "What's wrong?!"
Feeling the dense energy of their fighting, I felt my body tense up.
That was my cue.
There it is... my body reminding me that my resistance has never and will never be a force that creates what I truly want to be created.
Nor is it an energy that moves me or anyone around me in a way that is helpful or loving.
I can easily find evidence in my life that when I move and make choices from a place of resistance, all I do is create more of it.
I felt the feeling of being lost in the illusion.
The illusion that I can control the unfolding of life.
The illusion that I can control my children.
I took a deep breath, and, in that moment, I realized something.
I had an epiphany, and it became so clear.
Something that had been right in front of me my whole mothering career.
I pondered, is my continuous and robotic asking of "What's wrong?" is what is wrong, I asked myself.
It is sending the message to myself and others that what is happening and what is being experienced, is not right.
It should be different, but it's not.
I'm already assuming that something is wrong.
I'm already assuming that what is happening isn't supposed to happen.
I'm already believing that the unfolding of life in front of me should unfold in a different way.
For some crazy reason, I continue to believe that my boys should always get along and somehow be something they not and perhaps will never be.
What I've realized is when I approach anything with the attitude like something is already wrong, then I'm only creating more of that.
But what if nothing is ever wrong?
What if what we experience is actually exactly what should be happening?
These deep questions began arising in my consciousness and in quick contemplation, I realized that nothing was wrong,
I took a few deep breaths and sunk into this knowing.
I walked into their room as their argument was growing.
They were yelling at each other and arguing about who is putting whose feet on whose drawer.
It was so ridiculous.
We refer to these arguments as "bunny bracelets".
Years ago, both boys got rubber bunny bracelets for Easter.
Eventually one got lost.
The one that remained constantly was a cause of a fight.
It wasn't even anything that either of them really liked or wanted, they just didn't want the other one to have it.
"That's mine!" one would exclaim and the other would reply, "NO, that's MINE!"
It became an inside joke in our home, and when these silly fights over absolutely nothing would arise, we would say, "Stop arguing over bunny bracelets."
This fight this evening was over bunny bracelets.
I went into their room and stood there in silence.
I just held the space for their fighting.
It was uncomfortable, but I reminded myself that nothing here is wrong.
They are expressing themselves and who am I to judge or tell them to be different.
I can also be annoying, irritating, and also get upset over bunny bracelets.
What is required from us as parents is the courage and humility to realize that we express ourselves just as our children do... maybe a little more refined and hierarchal, but in essence our children are direct reflections of us.
They both began to tell me how the other one was causing them irritation and annoyance.
"He won't stop putting his feet on my drawer!" Ryder yells loudly.
"I'm just resting my feet there!" Ryland yells back.
Soon, my husband called my youngest into the other room.
At first Ryder resisted but then he left the room.
Ryland began telling me all the reasons why he hated his little brother.
Of course, as a mother and parent we really only like to see our children getting along, but this is so far from reality.
Was he wrong?
Should he only feel love and admiration for his brother?
Were his feelings of anger and annoyance valid?
Were Ryder's feeling of anger and annoyance towards Ryland valid?
All of our children's feelings are valid, no matter how much we invalidate them in our own minds or out loud.
When I was young, and probably you too, my feelings were not validated.
Even though I was feeling them, I was constantly told they were wrong.
I should be sweet, quiet, kind, and not cry over bunny bracelets.
You see, my parents, our parents, never could hold the space for our big feelings because they never got space held for theirs.
This cycle of shutting down our child's feelings because they make us uncomfortable is obsolete.
Just look around at the world.
Emotionally confident and available people are rare.
This is why we as mothers and parents are being called to enter into a new doorway to create a new way of being.
Yesterday as I began writing this email to you, right after I was checked my messages on IG and instantly this incredible and beautiful reminder from one of current favorite IG accounts, raising_yourself showed up in my feed.
It's a reel and begins with the 5 signs that you're an emotionally safe parent to your kids. I read each one with feelings of YES THIS IS SO TRUE, and of course feelings of shame for all the times I haven't lived up to this.
She shares that the 5 signs that you're an emotionally safe parent to your kids are:
This was exactly the message I needed.
It's a HUGE responsibility to be mother and a parent, and most of us never had conscious leaders to show us the way.
Yet, it's important to notice how far we have come in our parenting journey and to remember that it's not a race.
It's a process, requiring constant forgiveness for our humanity, and a practice to become more loving, spacious, and truly embody that which we want our children to be.
So, when the next argument arises, I will do my best to not spurt out "WHAT'S WRONG?" Instead, I'll hold my tongue, take a deep breath, and let love flow through me.
I'll remember to remember that whatever is unfolding is in the divine plan and the only thing I can control is what comes out of my mouth and the space I hold in all of it.
When I don't remember and shout it out, I'll quickly forgive and remind myself that I'm allowed to be human, and so are my kids... and my husband!
We are all allowed to be human.
In deep gratitude for you and our evolution together as parents,
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