Last week I got this comment: “I also find myself wondering when exactly we can not be perfect if it’s not at home? Being in the world and holding it together all the time is really, really hard and our kids most of all know instinctively the buttons to press to test whether we are still a safe harbour. Sometimes I just can’t be. And whilst I hate that, I think it’s unfair to expect myself to be. Striving to be better is absolutely my goal and I want to try and model to my kids that we can manage our emotions without turning into a psycho…but also I think sometimes it’s ok to let your guard down and be all parts of yourself, even the dark and ugly ones. Because we all have them.”
Thank you Laura. So glad you wrote that because you made me sit and really think about it.
Striving to be nice at home can be another thing to ‘get right’. Right? So besides being assertive, ball-busting, confident powerhouses at work, we also have to be all-loving, peaceful, nurturing beings with our sometimes whining, demanding, unreasonable children. Be balanced no matter what.
That balanced thing sounds lovely – if you are Bhudda or Jesus. I don’t know about you but I’m not in that league just yet. I am often balanced, but like Laura says, we all have those darker parts of us – in other words, the parts of us that are still lost in pain and not yet reclaimed into the love and light. I’m on the healing journey; which to me means learning to love myself fully – cellulite, psycho moments and all.
The more I think about it, the more I realise that for me wanting to be nice at home is a call to myself to stay connected to Love. I want to love myself even better. This actually IS about being willing to see all of me and love me as I am because it is at home that I am faced with the truth of where I don’t fully love myself yet. I see it in my psycho moments – and those come out at home; like the cellulite.
The thing is, I want to be an inspiration to MYSELF. I try not to think I have to be perfect in order to do that. I think what inspires me most is when I speak kindly to myself, when I strive but give myself a break if I need it, when I focus on what I’m getting right and gently encourage myself where I am struggling, when I show up for myself and take care of me consistently… In short, when I love myself well.
When I distance from the people who love me most and whom I love then I don’t feel well-loved by myself. When I act out my pain with them, I don’t feel loved by myself. In that moment I don’t know everything is ok. I don’t feel safe and worthy. My shouting or withdrawing, my anger or panic is an indication that I have lost touch with Love. In those moments I am judging myself.
I don’t like how it feels when I lose touch with Love. It hurts. It’s scary. It feels all alone. And it’s an illusion because Love is always there. I just have to relax and open to it. Open my heart and allow things in – my child, other people, my feelings, new experiences…
When I am ‘not nice’ at home it shows I am not loving myself well – and if I choose to see that, I can change it.
Have you ever had the experience where you feel shut down, scared or angry, your body is tight and then somehow you manage to stop, relax, let go and open up? Suddenly everything shifts from bad, purposeless and threatening to beautiful and rich and satisfying. Your chest impulsively expands with love and you begin to smile.
The times I am impatient and snap at my child when he acts like a rabid dog show me I have lost focus on his need for love and guidance – but also that I have lost touch with my own. I am not inspired by myself then. I don’t feel good after and I don’t feel proud. In my kindest moments I can lovingly say to myself, “Well, that’s an area I need to work on. I’m just learning” and the reason that makes me feel better – and be a nicer mommy again – is because I am back in touch with Love.
I want to be my own inspiration. I want to live with an open heart and stay connected to Love – even when it whines at me in that reeeaally irritating way. Not so that I ‘get it right’, but because it feels so much better.
Those of you in the Cape Town area have a look at Talks and Workshops to see what is happening this year.