2.24.2005

"happy mornings"

its presidents day and i am off on a trail ride with my husband. as i awake my first job was to get the children to school. i was very excited as the weather was wonderful. i got the children up and dressed and made them breakfast. jared was sitting quiet and calm and i said to him "jared, you are very relaxed this morning" and his reply was " well mom, you are letting me have a happy morning" my heart SANK, as i realised that because i was happy and relaxed,jared was able to be the same, other mornings when im flying around the house stressed to the max, projects onto him and shapes the way he feels. i said to him that from now on i was going to make a conscious effort to stay relaxed and happy so that he and zoe can start their day relaxed and happy too. i was sooo glad he told me this as so far i have kept my word and to my surprise i have a much better day. my concerns that i had on being able to communicate to my children and them to me are fading each time incidents like this happen and jared was also self aware of what was causing his change in his mornings (COOL!) thank you sweet jared for another wonderful lesson learnt!.

Comments:

Welcome to the time honoured art of holding space.


Gravatarthanks chris, i'm floating right now!!!

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posted by maria

1.25.2005

Acceptance within

As I sit and wonder about the many many times one has to deal with each different feeling throughout the course of a day, I as an adult having lots of practice, begin to think of the tremendous task our young children have to face. Most of the day they are without their parents guidence, which is why I choose to invest time with my children on how to deal with their feelings as much as I can. Time worth spent, when one evening my husband and I went out to dinner and our baby sitter,jennifer was keeping jared and zoe overnight for the first time. They absolutely adore jen so i had no worries on how they would be. As i entered the house at 10pm the phone rang and it was jen letting me know that someone wants to come home. i asked who it was (it was zoe) and i immediatly asked if she was crying. Her words to me were "actually, she is quite calm and happy, i tried just one time to persuade her to stay, but her message was crystal clear" i spoke to zoe and said "zoe, do you not want to stay with jen?" she calmly replied "no mama i just want to come home" So I went and got her. driving home i realised how zoe was totally in control of her own feelings,accepting how she felt,no anxiety or worry of her wish not being granted. her communication lines were wide open and clear. i was soooo excited and felt a huge relief as now it was confirmed to me that my 5yr old was on a wonderful adventure of self acceptance and also trust in me. as insignificant and trivial it may seem now, this ability to deal and have confidence in how she feels will be a huge benefit to her self worth. how much we can teach our children when we invest our time!

Comments:

her communication lines were wide open and clear. ... it was confirmed to me that my 5yr old was on a wonderful adventure of self acceptance and also trust in me.

it's so encouraging to read stories of how trust is built, clear communication encouraged, and how self-acceptance is nourished and inspired to grow. i'm moved by how conscious you are of actively developing such skills in your children rather than working so hard to GIVE them to your children.

i'm thinking about how often people think that if they show a child tons of acceptance and constantly tell them how wonderful they are, then the child will automatically realize it and integrate it for themselves... how sometimes that praise is empty and the child comes to depend on others for their own sense of worth. i love these stories that illustrate otherwise.

and i am eternally interested in the fruits that come through any relationship by simply
... investing our time!

thank you again for sharing.

with love,
ashley


GravatarWOW! That's so AWESOME! I'm so proud of Zoe; I feel like she's my own daughter!

Inspiring.

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posted by maria

1.11.2005

priceless-25cents

Under mine and my husbands pillow one morning I found 25cents. (I might mention that my son Jared has had two visits from the tooth fairy recently, and my daughter Zoe wished that she could have a visit also). Curiouse to know why, I asked Zoe who had put them there and she told me that she and Jared had. I asked her why and she replied with a HUGE,PROUD grin on her face "because I love you"

The smile on your face,
The truth in your eyes,
The touch of your hand,
Says it best, when nothing is said.

Comments:

How precious!!! The hearts of children are so pure and creative. They hide neither their shadow or their celestial love. It warms my heart to hear such stories, especially because you the receiver, Maria, are able to see and take in this most wonderful blessing.


GravatarThat reminds me of one Christmas several years ago: We always make Christmas stockings for our children, packed with all kinds of small toys and goodies (and still do, even though they're pretty much grown up!), and used to creep into their bedrooms around midnight on Christmas eve to leave them by their beds.

Usually (when they were little), they'd be up about 4am to unwrap them (and get suitably chocolatey!) but in the year in question, we woke to hear all sorts of whispers going on, followed by 'Santa's elves' creeping into our bedroom to place stockings they'd made for us. Nearly all the presents (and the stockings themselves) were tiny gifts they had made themselves - they must have spent hours and lots of imagination on it all.

I still have the tiny Father Christmas made from felt, complete with hat and beard, that sits by my bed - now about 10 years on. A tiny but very precious gift.


Gravatarmaria and andy,

your lovely stories make me wonder about those little tokens of appreciation that we can surprise and share with others... how such a little act can live for so long in the heart of another... perhaps a secret note hidden in a pair of pants...

thank you,
ashley

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posted by maria

1.04.2005

The healing world of play!

Sitting one evening reading my daughter Zoe a bed time story my phone rang and it was a good friend of mine very upset as her 3yr old great nephew had been burnt with a cigarette on his chest by his mother. In my shocked response to her I repeated what she had told me not realizing that Zoe was all ears (I guess the intensity in my voice caught her attention) I did what I could to consol my friend and hopefully gave her the advise she needed. I was mortified by the sheer thought of what had happened to this poor baby and began to think of how painfull this would have been for him.
I sat for a moment and Zoe said to me " did the baby get burnt Mama" I looked at her sadley and said "yes darling,he did" "is he going to be ok" I took her hand and reflected back to her how worried and concerned she was. she asked again if he was going to be ok. I reflected once more on how it made her feel sad that the baby was burnt and that I was sure Ju Ju(the great aunt who Zoe knows well) will put some cream on it for him. I kissed her on the cheek and told her that I loved her so much.
Afew days later she was changing the diaper on her baby doll and I noticed that there was a band aid on its chest. I said "Zoe whats wrong with your baby" ( I,remembering the baby who was burnt) she replied "she got burnt" then proceeded to remove the band aid and turned to me and said "see Mama she's all better now" I replied "yes sweetheart, she is"

I wondered how many other children were going through the same horrific ordeals and all I could do was hold onto the hope that the advice I gave my friend was enough to protect the little boy and Zoe was able to deal with the sadness through her toys.

Comments:

oh maria,

you soooo capture the magic of play. thank you again for this story and all the ones to come. i trust you know how my heart melts and leaps as you share of the wonders unfolding and the opportunities for experiencing and FEELING the many peeks and vallies of life that you facilitate and embrace with yourself and your relations (especially your kids). thank you.

all my love,
ashley


thank you for your story, Maria. you are an amazing person.

peace,
kelley


Ashley.
It's funny that if we would only allow it, how the fountain of life can flow. If we would open the doors to our hearts the way our children naturally do, how beautiful this world would be! thank you once again for you endless encouragement!
Love,Maria


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posted by maria

12.29.2004

Sibling limits

Each day I take a moment to reflect on how my day was, enjoying and savouring every moment with my children and trying to learn to deal with the new challenges they throw my way. Today I found myself thinking of the time when my 5 year old daughter Zoe came running to me whining because my 6 year son Jared was poking at her. I reflected back to her that it aggrivated her when her brother did this and that she was to use her words to tell him to stop. She carried on whining so he carried on poking at her. Again I asked her to tell him to stop, but she refused. She wanted me to tell him and as much as I wanted to fix it for her I knew if I did she would never learn to build confidence in herself to tell him or anyone else to stop when she wished it.

As she stood at my feet her body facing mine, I lent against the wall confused as what to do next. I then said to my son "Jared, doesn't the whining drive you crazy?" His reply was "Yes, but I want HER to tell me to stop." There was a moment of silence and then Zoe turned to Jared and asked him to stop. He granted her her wish and walked away. I stood for a moment speechless, it totally blew my mind as I found this very exciting as a parent to be able to let my kids work it out for themselves and to give THEM control of thier own actions. How easily situations can be resolved if you give your children enough trust and faith to fix it for themselves. I continue to practise this now, as when there comes a time when I am not around I can feel comfortable that they will be able sort out thier differences.I contunually encourage Zoe as I know we all learned a special lesson that day!

Comments:

Maria Darling!

You have been extolled to the heavens by our dear friend, Ashley, so I was compelled to indulge in your latest offering!

Tonight over dinner Ashley and I were talking about the importance of coming to an explicit recognition/understanding of those things that are yet only intuited, or lacking the manifest forms of words and concrete cognition.

Reading your account of the scenario with your children, and how you oriented yourself toward them and their conflict, cloaked my intuition/implicit understanding in the mantle of words, making concrete and SPECIFIC what was only held in my awareness as a vague principle.

After absorbing your words, my own explicit understanding of how to foster empowering conflict resolution increased exponentially, and I had the distinct impression that in the future (whether that be tomorrow or years from now) that I will be able to approach conflict--my own and others--in such a way that lends itself to the successful end you described in your post. (In other words, you have given me an invaluable gift, and as I have opportunity to employ and impart it in my own life, I will remember the night I read your words and how instrumental they were to my own growth and happiness.)

THANK YOU, Maria!

Love,
Brandy


GravatarDear Brandy,

Yes our dear friend indeed! for Ashley is responsible for giving me this gift and I will forever be in her debt. Her very presence thrills me as I know she is the only person who really feels and understands how precious my children are to me.
and you sweet Brandy, after reading your comments I humbly bow, but am thrilled that you too were able to rejoice and feel.

Thankyou!
with love,Maria


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posted by maria

12.16.2004


~story people

vacation and celebration time. i'm off to explore parts of this big state i've yet to see and celebrate two years well spent in texas being educated and growing... growing... growing... learning to hear the music everywhere and bowing humbly when all i can say is thank you.

Comments:

Dearest Ashley. How easily our emotional balance is tipped. How easily our emotional partners are switched. Skipping along, skip,skip,skip, a sunny happy day and my heart is light. I trip "oh no" as I stumble I reach out my arms to try to catch my fall. Its dark now and the rain drops fall from my cheeks. I stand back and observe and learn as the partner of sadness steps in. Deep breath in accepting and knowing that lightness is patiently waiting to return! I will smile again. ~


GravatarStory! "Mama you don't love me anymore" said my 6year old son. I stopped in my tracks turned and looked straight at him, I raised my eybrows and smiled, he returned the same facial expression for he remembered that when ever he thought I did not love him to come and tell me and I would give him a very special hug and kiss. This went on for another five times(laughing and playing) as after 50 kisses and hugs he was now convinced he was loved. You are in my thoughts always as through your wonderful advice I am able to express my love through the eyes of my child and in a way for him to understand in his world. I am forever in your debt for the very thought of not experiencing these "treasured moments" saddens me.
God bless you especially in this Holy season, sweet Ashley.
Hugs and kisses,Maria

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posted by ashley

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