Everyone who lives with me has a quirky view on the world… Even my husband who is a sensible sort!! But I do so love it when those quirky ideas match, and recently, whilst sat by the sea, my daughter and I basically boiled parenting down to a dance! And a merry dance at that….
Sometimes we both hear the same music, the same beat, and our dances are fluid and beautiful and thoughtful and considerate. Where we rise and fall with the notes of each emotion and hear the changes in the tempo of life at the same time. It is so true….. That when we can hear the sound of each others songs we are aware of how each of us is feeling. We can see the signs, read the expression and hear without words. We know when to leave each other alone, when to share a secret, when to laugh out loud at something weird we have done, and when to put the kettle on and share our days over a cup of tea and a custard cream.
But sometimes, we don’t dance to the same beat. Sometimes our songs are not in tune, not in time, and it is on these days that we are more likely to crash! This is when being a parent is tough. And I imagine, being a daughter too.
So on these day, when we can see each others dance but not necessarily hear the melody we are dancing to. These are the days, when we have to take time to breathe! To pause, to think, to hold on to our responses, and to try not to react like a firework! Reminding ourselves, that we can see the actions of our children, we can see what they are doing, yet we have no knowledge of what the intentions behind those actions are. These are the days when I do my utmost not to judge so quickly. Not to let anger spill and spoil the love. It is on these days that I can gently ask “are you ok?” but let it be ok not to be ok… But know that love is there when and if it is needed. To be honest, my daughter has taught me that. That sometimes she wants to tell me things, but doesn’t need or want my counsel, she just wants to be heard.
Being a parent can be tricky. Every stage of parenthood comes with a new set of challenges as well as blessings! As a parent to teenagers, we do lose the ability to instantly fix. When they cry, a hug doesn’t always make it better! And actually, as they grow and their brains and their identity with them, it is not our job to fix, but simply walk by their side. Ready with a steady hand, to catch them if they fall. There is an old saying that when your baby is small, how your arms ache, from all the carrying and when those babies grow, it is your heart that aches, knowing all the turmoil they face that you simply can not mend.
Sometimes when our songs are so out of tune, anger appears as an answer! But the problem with shouting is it just leads to more shouting and a massive increase in negative emotions. That sneaky red mist that usually only rears its head in the car, lands with a thump and all reason, all logic is lost. The ability to make the situation better is hidden by a deep red fog that now steams from your ears!! We all get like that.. I know for me I am like a characterture of myself when it happens and in my minds eye I literally see the top of my head open and some crazed and wild woman appear screaming and spitting a bit! I also know that I feel horrible afterwards.
These tunes we hear, those times when they are different, although can make the road a rocky one, sometimes so much so we trip, with patience, love and a dollop of understanding on both sides, soon come back together. It is so important to understand that although our children are a part of us, they are themselves, and it is our job to help them safely navigate towards adulthood with as much empathy, love and cups of tea as is needed. So important to give them enough room, both physically and mentally, to let their wings grow so they can take off… To the sound of their own
song, gently accompanied by the beat of our drum.
Look after each other
Love and Light