When we began this blog, we were just starting the journey to changing our day-to-day lives. We had many goals, and many changes to make. I’d like to take a moment to reflect on where we’ve come from and how far we still have to go.
First, even when things were bad, we thought our children were awesome. They knew we loved them, but didn’t always feel it. Ryan and I both yelled fairly often, not daily but probably weekly. I dropped F-bombs daily. So did Brom.
Ryan and I were at a loss for how to parent through the stress. We resorted to bribes and punishments that were largely ineffective and left everyone feeling horrible. Some days screens spent more time with our children than we did. Some days I wanted to cry alls ay long.
We were disconnected and hurting.
Over the past two months, we’ve really focused on filling our children’s love cups and embraced consensual living more fully than the past two years allowed. We’ve tried to add something to each day that brings a spark of magic and love into the lives of our children. We’ve tried to let go of ideas the hinder the giving and receiving of love (bedtimes, behaviour expectations)
We don’t always succeed. Some days we just manage to get by, other days I have a dozen errands to run. Today I made a cake that took roughly 8 hours of my day. That meant the time spent directly focused on children was a lot smaller than most days. But tomorrow they get to eat the cake, so there is that. 🙂
When we first started this blog, our children were angry a lot. They fought a lot. They did not want to find solutions. They did not want to be friends.
As we focused on calming ourselves, filling their love cups, and ignoring any behaviour that we didn’t like we noticed a change. A sudden change. As the weight lifted, their emotions released, the tears flowed. Every day, for a couple weeks, the tears flowed for hours on end. Those days made it very difficult to find the magic. But we tried.
They were micro-moments. Moments when the reflection from a crystal created a dancing rainbow the girls chased for 5 minutes. Moments when we rolled on the floor giggling about silly things. Moments when the light shined upon our family and the world seemed brighter before the sadness enveloped them again.
Think about that. Micro-moments. Less than ten minutes, less than five in most cases. But so much can happen in that time if you’re aware and grasp the moment.
In order to make it through those days I focused on these micro-moments. As I held my daughter and let her tears soak my shirt, I caressed her hair and remembered how small and fragile she was as a new baby. I whispered to her the story of first meeting her. How much I loved her then, and how much I love her now, and how nothing will change that, no matter how big the emotions get.
Her tears flowed faster and freer. But the next day they barely surfaced.
Another time Agatha was laying on the floor looking angry. I lay down next to her. Kissed her cheek while opening my hand to reveal a flower blossom I’d just found in my garden. I let her know it made me think of her and I wanted her to have it. So small, such little time, but it made more difference than a thousand other minutes in our days.
Now our children come to us with love and hope. Yes, sadness and anger are still there. But now hope is much stronger. Their cups aren’t full yet, but they’re filling faster than they empty for the first time in ages.
The best thing in the entire world is seeing the love your child has for you shining on their faces. But the best thing in your child’s world is seeing your love for them shining on your face, spoken in your words, demonstrated with your actions, shared with your touch, given freely and unconditionally.
I think of how far we’ve come in two months and I can hardly wait to see where we’ll be in two more months.