I received the most extraordinary gifts when my children were born. These two people that entered my life have beamed out love, beauty and aliveness every day of their lives. They brought such delight into my life. And yet, living with and caring for them also challenged me to an extent that I was totally unprepared for. I was challenged so profoundly that it completely transformed my life. I have experienced liberation through parenting. Yes, I know that sounds weird, but bear with me.
When I my first child was born I was blissfully unaware of the challenges that lay ahead. I had not reflected on what parenting would be like and I had no adult experience with young children. I hadn’t considered anything beyond giving birth and having some baby clothes and nappies on hand. In truth, no amount of thought or preparation would have really helped me prepare for parenting. From the moment my first son was born I was making it up as I went along.
The journey begins
As my journey into parenting began I discovered that lurking in my mind was a large bundle of beliefs about children and parenting. They were stashed away in my unconscious mind, just waiting to pop up when the moment was right. They were formed out of my own childhood experiences as well as scraps of information that I had absorbed from my friends, extended family and the cultural soup in which I was stewing every day. I didn’t realize it, but I had already picked up a job description. In the early years of my son’s life many of these thoughts brought stress into my life. (more…)