I am in a sort of limbo at present, awaiting the arrival of my second baby. I am restless, impatient even, wishing him to come, and thinking everyday - will today be it? It is so hard to stay in the present moment with such anticipation, and I know that in feeling this way I'm missing many little moments, sacrificing them for want of something bigger.
“Use your words”. How often do we hear that being told to children? Very young children especially? It has become almost a mindless phrase that gets thrown out, with the expectation that our wee ones know what it means, can grasp what is asked of them, and run with it.
As we get older, the whole notion of wishes often gets put in the ‘hog wash’ pile. We sort desires into the can, and can't possibly happen, categories, and talk more about facing reality. “You wish”, becomes a scoffing term when someone touts dreams we deem unlikely.
We are parents and… Parenting is a beautiful role we carry out but it is not all we are.
We have to be parents and... The 'and' is what keeps us balanced and whole. It is what keeps us from obsessing too strongly about what we are or aren't doing for our children.
As teachers parents have asked us ‘why heart centred, aren’t all centres heart centred?’
It can be hard to put into words exactly what ‘heart centred’ can offer a child, but when we see each and every ‘graduating’ child we know that this is what we’d love to show these querying parents.
If there is one word to guide us on our heart centred parenting journey, it is WITH.
This one short word conveys a powerful message about the fact that parenting is relationship based. We exist as parents because of our children and we take this journey together.
Parenting is not easy, but nor does it have to be as hard as we often make it.
Many of the things we end up struggling with are not the result of our experiences or our child's behaviour. It is our thoughts and perceptions that create the real tension. Our mindset sets the tone.
So often we get caught up in the idea that we need to ‘go big’ in our time spent with our children. We book tickets, cram outings with as many stops as possible, and still wonder if we are doing ‘enough’.
Our children have their own timetable for development. If we trust their inbuilt timing, we can resist the urge to ‘teach’, intervene, coax and prompt. We can instead put our energies into observing, noticing, appreciating and celebrating. Our focus moves to looking at what our child CAN do instead of what they can’t (yet).
Our children want to share with us. They want to invite us into their world, to have us hop aboard the train of their latest interest. Many of their passions will be things we ourselves have no interest in.