Today I gave myself the morning off. I took a walk through the town and enjoyed the fresh breeze on my skin while absorbing the beautiful view of the Mediterranean sea not too far away. My intention was to return something to a store which in the end led me to have a lovely conversation with a very concerned mom.
I am sharing this with you because I just know it will benefit someone experiencing a similar situation.
This mom (*Angela), is a bright, educated, confident and beautiful person. She works hard and expects no favors from anyone. She recently had her second baby (5months now) and is experiencing the additional joys (and challenges) that new babies always bring. The reason she is troubled is because her first born, (*Jessica – 7years old), is having quite a hard time with the arrival of the new baby and her behavior is showing it. Everything that a sibling could do to show that she is not capable (yet) of accepting the new baby, Jessica is doing it, including seemingly unsafe and risky expressions of affection towards the baby.
Mom and Dad are at their wits end and are panicking about what this current situation may hold for the future as the children grow. Angela was taking deep breaths as she opened up her heart to me and I just listened and listened and listened…. Until she asked me what I think she should do.
Any mom will agree, that this type of situation is extremely difficult and exhausting for everybody and I don’t think we would wish it on our worst enemy. So as I sat there finding just the right words to share with this amazing mom who is doing the absolute best she can, I couldn’t help but notice the words she was using to describe herself.
“I don’t have any patience. I’m so tired. She’s gotten out of control and I don’t know what we’re going to do. She’s become a nightmare to do homework with. I don’t have any patience. I wish I did but I think it’s the way I was brought up….” And a lot more along those lines.
She was expressing all of these very strong statements. And her mind and body were listening. And BELIEVING.
At this point, I shared with her that sure she might feel like she’s impatient and all the other stuff she said, and it’s ok. She’s doing the best she can with the resources she has. And, I also gently shared that she can also choose to feel anything else she wants. First by thinking it, embodying it, FEELING IT and believing it and acting like it. We do not have to be victims of our thoughts or imaginations. Yes, this particular life situation can be very challenging – AND – it can also be seen as the learning curve that mom and dad need to ride so they are able to STEP UP and do what their oldest daughter is screaming at them to do, be, express, model etc. Every behavior is a form of communication and it is the parent’s job to investigate and uncover WHY the child is behaving that certain way and what the parent can do to fulfil the need that the child is so desperately trying to fulfill through the undesirable behavior.
The setting of our conversation did not allow for an immediate life coaching intervention but if she were a client who came to me with this problem, I would definitely line up a few techniques to help get her to the mental space she wants to be and teach her why she might be feeling those things and how she can change them and discredit them and CHOOSE to believe something else about herself and especially something that serves her as a mom raising her two young children. THEN….with her new ‘eyes’ she’ll be more able to SEE her child and decide (with the confidence of a lioness) how to respond in a supportive and connecting way.
As a Conscious Parent, there are countless opportunities every day where we can practice connection on a deeper level with our children. This mom, however hard she tried, was just feeling so disempowered and out of control. It takes a lot of energy to keep our bodies in this state and that’s why it is a TIRING state of mind. It drains you. It is not the child that is draining you. It’s what you are thinking that is draining you.
Before I had to leave I shared one more thing with Angela ….. the magic of the PAUSE!
I explained how in the heat of the moment, when there’s a situation seemingly out of control with the s#*% about to hit the fan, just press PAUSE. Stop all thinking. Stop all talking. Stop any action that is going on and just freeze. The only thing you are supposed to do is BREATHE – and RETREAT inwards. I shared that I sometimes say a prayer. No matter how I use this card, it always always always gets us out of the dark storm. It literally creates a SPACE in time for relief to come in and love to soften your heart. When that happens, love will whisper in your heart what you need to do next.
TRUST ME – IT ALWAYS WORKS
I really hope that Angela will use the Pause and that she starts choosing more empowering and resourceful words to describe herself because the words we think and say literally do build our way. It’s just how it is.
Some super empowering words you can use to shift your thinking right now are:
I am learning that I am a patient person
I listen while looking at my children attentively into their eyes
I respect their ideas and opinions
I am the umbrella in their storm
I am understanding my uniqueness and my essence
My children are unique in their essence
I am less of a perfectionist and learning to enjoy the simple things in life
I respect my feelings and my view of the world
I do the same for my children’s feelings and their view of the world
They are not a mini-me
I am their rock and guide as they navigate their way to adulthood
It’s ok to make mistakes
We are thriving as a family
I am learning along the way
I am raising my self-awareness
I am learning to let go of controlling my children
I accept them EXACTLY as they are
I accept and love myself EXACTLY as I am
I enjoy caring for my family
Sometimes shit happens – we continue to thrive even more
Today I am easy-going and free
I express my feelings and show emotion in front of my children
I am committed to my personal growth and development
I listen to my body and honor its sacredness
I choose my words carefully (lots of ears are listening)
I am grateful for the challenges as they are teaching me on this journey
Today is a good day. Today something amazing is going to happen
Always with love…Alexia