“We as parents can have huge impact on our children’s egoic, human minds but we will never be able to alter or edit their essence, their soul, their conscious mind even one jot. That is theirs, that is safe from our influence and that knowledge gives me great freedom.”
Breathe deep, feel the disappointment and the pain and then let them go. My babies, my girls, my children are not mine. Deep down, I have always known that I am just the custodian of the children who I birthed. It’s a difficult truth. I am their mother but they are not mine. I have no ownership. They came here through me and so we are irrevocably, irreversibly connected. Our relationship, whatever that comes to look like, will be life defining for all of us but, they are not my possessions. Every parent will understand the feeling of wanting to bundle up their little ones and shield them from the world – and yet we must not. Our job is simply to protect and nurture their human forms until they reach independence.
We are also their teachers. The way I choose to parent them will help shape their ego-mind. Once upon a time, I might have said ‘some of that parenting will be right and some of that parenting will be wrong’ but of course it is more accurate to say that all of that parenting will simply be. My parenting will be perfect just by virtue of its very being. I am speaking here from a holistic, spiritual standpoint, from that perspective, a wise friend often reminds me ‘you actually can’t get it wrong’. Naturally, humanly, I will fall short often. I will shout, become frustrated, not listen and misinterpret because my humanity makes me fallible. I will continue to earnestly do my very best.
Parenting,for me, has been the most vivid teaching ground. So much of what life looks like today is so very different to before I became a mother. Matrescence has made me brave and I am courageous when I think of how my decisions and actions will inform the lives of my children. If I wouldn’t want it for them, I cannot accept it for myself.
At this moment, I am not in contact with my own mother. On the face of it this fact could simply be taken as a sad state of affairs. It may look from the outside like we are a failed family, but the truth is far more complex. My mother and I are far from failures. As a mother, I must accept that I will love my children as well as I know how. I must also accept that love as expressed by this wonky human will be imperfect and lacking and it is likely somehow, not meaning to, through my love, I will cause harm and pain to my children however accidental. I must also accept that this mother-wound may just be their greatest teacher. Working through difficult times may be the thing that allows them to grow, to know themselves better and leads them to enlightening times.
Despite my difficulties with my Mum, I am thankfully well and thriving. Our relationship has presented me with some of the most confusing, difficult, heartbreaking challenges of my life and yet I am still here. The fact that I find myself here, knowing myself better, is clear evidence that my mother has done her job well. I have been cared for. I am loved and I am learning from my mother-wound. My parents gave me exactly what I needed to become me. I have learnt so much from them and our relationships. From the backdrop of our family, I have grown into this wholehearted human and I am grateful to them.
Like many parents, I have spent much time worrying about how my decisions and actions may impact my kids. It would be impossible for a mother to have no impact on her children – damned if we do and damned if we don’t! Even a child separated from her birth mother will always have an ongoing relationship with her, even if they never meet again. So, in doing my best, I have to learn to believe that I am succeeding. I must continue to remind myself that I actually cannot get it wrong, rather than criticising and over analysing.
There is some wonderful news out there for parents though. This has given me such solace. We as parents can have huge impact on our children’s egoic, human minds but we will never be able to alter or edit their essence, their soul, their conscious mind even one jot. That is theirs, that is safe from our influence and that knowledge gives me great freedom. Even in the most challenging parenting moments, I can know without a shadow of a doubt, that my children will always be exactly who they are. There is no power outside them that could ever change that. They will always be able to find their way back to who they really are.