Yes, yes, yes? Boy, do I love my daily notes from the universe. Especially this one.
And this is what comes to mind for me on parenting, and especially on parenting spirited children:
Children learn from who you are more than what you say or the mistakes you make along the way. You don't have to be perfect to be a great parent. You just have to be real. Your authenticity gives your children (and everyone else you meet) unspoken permission to be authentic themselves, and isn't that what the world needs more of?
What I learned from raising Paige is that me owning my shit and doing my best to work through it was enough. I didn't have to have it all together to be the mom she needed. I just needed to be exactly who I was every step of the way. As if I could be another way.
When Paige was younger I so wished she could have come into my life at a later point when I had already healed. She came into my world at the start of my journey towards wholeness and my separation from my family so it was a turbulent time. But she was meant to be part of that journey since her arrival was the catalyst for it.
Paige was my greatest teacher and supporter through many of those years because children see the truth and they don't judge like we do. She saw me long before I could see myself. She never bought into my tainted perception of who I was. Not once. And she never internalized my struggle because she knew it was mine alone and I never made her feel responsible for my pain.
And she knew I was doing my best. And she knew what I was up against. And she was not damaged just because I had my stuff to work through, although it was my greatest fear that she would be.
But we all have stuff to work through at every stage in life no matter who we are or how great things look on the outside. If our work was finished, we wouldn't be here. We are evolving from one moment to the next just like everyone else.
And none of us can be faulted for where we are along the path.
I believe we are always exactly where we are meant to be. I believe every person in your life is there to teach you something - and you, them. I believe we can't fuck this up. I believe things get better. I believe we are powerful creatures with an innate ability to transform ourselves and our lives.
And I believe our kids are perfectly matched to us. I was not meant to have a challenging child. I already had a challenging life. I was meant to have Paige's peace and wisdom and compassion because I needed these things at a soul level.
And then there are some of my friends...the most loving and big-hearted friends who just want everyone to be happy, who end up with the most spirited children. Makes sense though because spirited children are there to shake things up and to help teach you about setting better boundaries and about caring less about what everyone else thinks and to finally give up on trying to make everyone happy. You can't.
These spunky critters are there to wake you up and make you stronger. They can't be ignored. They don't care about the status quo or doing what they're told. They're here to challenge everything and teach you so much about who you are and what really matters.
I was a spirited child. I still am. And the world needs us! So while some of my friends feel the need to apologize for their kid's rowdy behaviour or defiant nature when we hang out, I'm all for it. I fucking love it! Probably because they remind me of myself and I get them. They need to be seen and heard and understood and it takes a very special person to be able to offer them that gift.
You may envy other parents who don't have to face what you face but I promise you that you could not grow as fully with another kind of child. Nor could they flourish as fully without you as their parent.
SO STOP TRYING TO HUSH THEM UP OR FIT THEM INTO A BOX THEY DON'T BELONG IN! AND STOP THINKING YOU'VE FAILED SOMEHOW JUST BECAUSE YOU CAN'T CONTROL OR TAME A SPIRITED CHILD!
We need the loud, outside-of-the-box whippersnappers who don't care what people think of them. Don't silence them. Meet them where they are. Respect their strength and personal power while you gain in yours as well.
The world needs the trailblazers and the peacemakers and everything in between. There's room for everyone and everyone is needed to complete the whole.
And no matter who your parents are, or who your children are, you can trust that they came with the perfect combination of lessons to help you along your unique journey.
My mom forced me to become strong just by having to deal with her. My daughter taught me to see myself with eyes of love just because she could not see me any other way.
Both were powerful teachers custom-made just for me.
All my love,
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