Being Present as a Parent


“It’s not our job to toughen our children up to face a cruel and heartless world. It’s our job to raise children who will make the world a little less cruel and heartless.”

― L.R. Knost, Two Thousand Kisses a Day: Gentle Parenting Through the Ages and Stages

Before I was a parent, it was easy for me to see all of the things that other parents could do to solve issues between themselves and their children. It was so simple, or so I thought, that I often wondered why parents took the hard road. Now, as a parent on her own healing journey, things are never so clear.

It can be easy to be centered, grounded and present with an open heart when I am alone … and especially when I am in meditation. However, when my children are triggering my wounds, sometimes it can be a real struggle for me to hold onto any of that grace.

When I can find humor and help them laugh, the downward spiral can be quickly broken. Usually these moments are found when I am in the grace of my heart. Other times, especially when I am focused on outcomes, my grace is lost and I am challenged in my ability to be present. It seems that I dive into my wounds of a yesteryear. Getting lost in my own feelings of rejection, it can be a challenge to be present as a parent.

In those moments of feeling emotionally frozen, I do my best to sit with it and to avoid bringing it out to my children. Sometimes I am able to complete this mission successfully. Other times I miss the mark completely. I do my best to turn these into learning moments for myself. It can be a challenge to simultaneously parent my children while I re-parent myself.

Breathing into the emotional pain, I am able to more quickly move from being stuck to being back in grace.


Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles

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