It’s been a few long and crazy weeks since my last post. I have felt really run down and as though everything has been piling on top of me and I am suffocating under the weight of it all. This has felt like it has played out in the family dynamic big time. Alas things seem to be shifting and we are on the upward swing..
We spend so much time together that when one of us is off kilter it rolls through the unit and has big impact. Inevitably there are 4 individual needs, wants and stages that are seeking to be heard and nurtured, it’s likely most of the time someone is going to be processing something, so learning to deal with this kind of thing is going to help us reduce suffering for all. The way we learn to deal with it is by feeling it right? Going through the motions and learning to express and communicate what we feel we need to be happy and acknowledged. Sounds simple enough right?
It’s funny because I spend ALOT of time with a spirited 2-year-old and a totally switched on 5-year-old explaining the importance of them expressing themselves, their ideas and needs in a gentle way so that they can be heard and their needs can be met. The last few weeks I have not been practising this at all. I have been repressing and falling into old habits of not honouring my self-care and my needs. I have not been communicating, instead bottling things up and depleting my energy till I end up, curled in ball and tears flooding. I can blame a lot of things and people but ultimately it’s really me. I am responsible for having my voice heard and needs met. If I can’t acknowledge what I need than I certainly can’t expect my family to read my mind.
It’s been interesting to see how the kids really run off me energetically. Maybe because we spend so much time together but they really tap into my energy and seem to almost absorb it. It’s been a big lesson these last few weeks about the silent power one harnesses and how our young are reading us, all parts of us, all the time. I guess because they are so much more in tune with the subtle nuances of our tone, manner, touch and feel. They are reading the world in such a way that they are tapped in and engaged all the time, they are looking out, where as we can become so consumed within our own head and minds that sometimes the screamingly obvious we are completely oblivious too. Sometimes it can seem like a great weight to carry, the prime care givers and emotional stabilizer for 2 small individuals but that’s why we must honour ourselves.
When I really started taking the idea of having my children with me all the time to facilitate a more self-directed education seriously, one of the big things I was worried about was finding that time to replenish my cup, feed my soul and recharge my batteries. I think it is one thing that every carer embarking on this journey questions. Because the fact is if your well is dry no body drinks and this will just not work. As parents and especially mothers, our society on a whole does very little to support and encourage us to raise our young as we so feel is right for our family. From pregnancy there is little empowerment and a lot of fear created around what we are so naturally inclined and to do and flourish in. Little acknowledgement for a mother’s intuition and a culture that lacks very little guidance or initiation to mark the welcoming of motherhood’s journey. It seems quiet obvious that this is one of the hardest journeys to take on especially when we are walking it alone. We are not supported in our choices as parents to nurture our children’s individual needs and the pressures of household, work, finance and child rearing are rising with little validation that we are well equipped and entitled to make the best decisions for our children, despite if they go against societal norms.
So as I slowly venture farther down this path, a few things I am coming to understand are that on this journey it is so important to prioritize time for me and the things I love. I mean certainly as an un-schooling/ home educating mother but really for all us mothers out there. I am being opened up to how important it is to create the community that may not already be in place and advocate for the pro-choice of parents, the need for support for mothers and carers. I certainly don’t have it all figured out but I am feeling more drawn to creating initiatives that create a more connected family unit. To create spaces in our community that give us a chance to grow and flourish as individuals and as community.
If i don’t keep myself growing and learning, I will have nothing to offer my children. I have a lot on my plate at the moment and I am moving though some pretty big shifts and changes of my own. It’s funny how this decision to home educate has aligned with myself and partner’s outlook on our lives, our educations and the systems in which we function within and want to create a sense of change and wellbeing for all. To be conscious of the power of choice and to work towards reclaiming power and freedom for everyone. To live lives that are of service to our community. This move, this change in thinking, a step against the grain seemed like a small choice in the scheme of things but it has created a whole new dimension of thinking for our family and is opening a whole world of possibilities of ways in which we want to live.
I guess motherhood has been such the journey that it has made me look at the way in which I live and want to better myself to be the best role model I can for my children. To try to teach them by practicing a life of love, kindness, respect and truth towards myself and all. We are the change and we can shift things but it’s the small choices everyday, the moving through our life a little more gentle, thoughtful and kinder to ourselves and our loved ones. It’s the impact of those small moments, where we are mindful in our approach and make a choice not to just repeat what we know but to move away and choose something a little different this time. Mistakes are inevitable and we must welcome them as that is where real growth takes place. There is such an abundance of cultivation of self, when we allow ourselves to be open enough to dare to travel to those vulnerable spaces. Those parts of ourselves we repress and push down, when we go there and learn from that space, shifting the darkness into beautiful shades of light, that beam down onto our children, allowing them to absorb the warmth of change. They can then use this fuel to take it to the next level, to know more and do better, to progress to be the pure light they were born.