I walked down the hall and into the bathroom stall. There on the door in front of me was a quote. It described that in many Native American traditions, when the men returned from hunting, their first question was always:
“How are the children?”
They believed that this told them all they needed to know. The health of any tribe could be measured by the well-being of the children.
I can still remember that quote and the paper. I remember that particular bathroom and stall. The whole visual memory is imprinted upon me because the truth of that quote struck me so deeply in that moment.
So, my friends, I ask you today…
How are the children?
We all know well and good that right now, the children are hurt. Angry. Wounded. Dead.
You don’t need me to tell you that our children are in trouble, or that our culture needs some help…
I know it can all seem so overwhelming, what is one to do?
So, I simplify it for us here today, and offer up ONE practice to transform our relationship to our own children + ourselves.
One thing I notice again + again, is that as soon as a child begins to interact with me, or with my daughter, inevitably, a mama bear or papa bear comes right up, grabs their hand + pulls them away.
The other night I was eating at a local restaurant, the Mountain Sun.
Sophia was running around, as she always does…and a little girl came up + met her eyes. I saw the excitement go through Sophia’s body. She was elated.
You see, so often, Sophia seems eager to connect with others- happy to see them, ready to engage. Often times other kids ignore her, or even walk away.
This time, this girl was alive + awake + excited to play!
Then, the mom came up + grabbed her daughter’s hand.
I said, “Oh, it’s okay, Sophia loves playing with others.”
The mom said, “Well, our daughter will probably be too rough, or grab her cheeks.”
I said, “Well, that’s okay. Sophia’s tough. She can take it.”
The mom left, her daughter in tow, and Sophia’s face dropped + she went back to running around solo.
You see, Sophia is an only child. And though we’re out and about weekly at various groups or play spaces, it isn’t often that Sophia really gets time or space to play + engage with another.
I felt so sad, as I long for this for her.
A bit later in the meal, the girl found her way to our table again + once again, I was elated!
Enter the father. He picks her up + takes her away.
In the playgroup we’re in on Mondays, there’s a little boy there who has never engaged with me. Just yesterday, for the first time in weeks, he came over, started to engage, and even said Sophia’s name.
Woops! Here comes mom…grabs hand…walks away.
Now, let me say, I know- sometimes you’re busy, you have to go, your kid is sick, it’s potty time, yaddah, yaddah yaddah…
But, for those moments when it’s not any of those things…
What is it?
What makes us grab our kid + yank them away?
Well, I’m glad you asked…because I have a theory…
When we’re not able to pause, anchor into ourselves, take a deep breath + release control…
WE feel uncomfortable.
It’s so scary…our child…they might hit, bite, say something strange that reflects poorly on us…
Better that we control their every move + not allow them to follow their own impetus.
I see so many parents controlling their children because they themselves are not trained in sitting still. They aren’t comfortable with the unknown…
Welcome to your ego, mamas.
It’s not about you.
And guess what? If your kid acts like a kid…
I’M OKAY WITH THAT!
If your kid pushes, or says, MINE! or even grabs cheeks…
I trust that we can handle that shit! Like the light angel bad-asses that we all are!
PLEASE, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD…let your children explore, play, and follow their own inner yearnings…
Stop trying to control, divert, change, distract…
This leads to children who don’t feel confident in their own worth. They can’t choose for themselves.
They’re not in touch with their inner promptings. They don’t hear their own guidance.
They grow up to not trust themselves or their intuition.
They ask everyone else for help, to make their decisions, or worse yet, they create their whole life to please others + end up depressed, isolated, in dead-end jobs, divorced, or sometimes, they kill themselves or kill others because of their pain.
I could tell you that the children are falsely being diagnosed with ADHD, or are being over-vaccinated, or are being over-scheduled, or are over-busy, or are being fed pesticides, or are able to buy guns…
But one of the biggest problems I see, every day of my life, is that the young ones are wanting to follow their inner yearnings + impulses + connect with others, and we, in our inability to take a deep breath + not have control of their every move, won’t let them.
And the costs of this are huge, and subtle, so you can’t see it right away…
it’s not as loud as the sound of a gun killing our teens...but it’s just as deadly.
So, what can we do?
- See a therapist
When you want to prompt, change, direct, question, control…simply sit back + take a deep breath.
Let your child wander free + develop a lasting trust in their own heart. This may be one of the single most important things you can do for your children.
And finally, let’s not mistrust our community members + allow the media + fear to force us to buy too deeply into stranger danger. The facts are that MOST child abduction cases happen by people we know.
Let’s foster community, safety, neighborhood camaraderie and love. Otherwise, “they” win + we lose our tribe.
It’ll likely always be true that it takes a village to raise a child…let’s save what of that we have left + cultivate trust in our children’s hearts.
The most important part of the formative years (the first 7 years) is fostering a sense of “the world is a safe place.”
Let’s watch more Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood, and less news.
All my love,
P.S. If you’re not already in my Facebook group, join us here and let’s continue the conversation: http://theboulderpsychic.com/yourdivinelife