Caidin’s growing-up. He is getting taller, his interests are changing and (at times) his acknowledged need of me is less. He is more comfortable running off with friends and no longer needs the physical ‘check-in’ of a hug that once offered him security and stability.
From the day he was born I have consciously chosen to live in the moment. When Caidin had colic for the first 3 months of his life and slept little (which meant I slept little), I remember thinking to myself, ‘Don’t wish this time away.’ And I didn’t. I did everything I could to support Caidin so that he could move past the colic, but I didn’t wish that he was somehow magically older and past this experience. I knew that life was going to fly by and before I knew it Caidin was going to be going off to college. We’re not quite there yet but I can’t believe he is eight already.
I’m glad that I had the awareness to be present, because time has moved quickly and here I am with a little boy who’s not so little anymore.
I know there is a lot more growing and growing-up to be done, but I can see how much and how fast he is changing.
It becomes difficult to let our children grow-up when we allow their need and reliance on us to be what fills us and what validates us. Many parent-child struggles rest solely on this one piece of awareness. If we live unconsciously, we use all sorts of outside forces and factors to make ourselves feel good or feel important or feel worthy. We use our work, our role in the family, the reliance that others have on us. We can also use negative dynamics to create a sense of validation; like drama and struggle. And we use our children – they need us, they depend on us, they turn to us, and that makes us feel important or it gives us a sense of purpose. That is, until they want to grow-up. When they want to grow-up, they need us in different ways, but it is different. If we don’t let them take their own steps, find their own voice, claim their own identity, they in turn feel the need to fight against us in an effort to claim their independence.
If you’ve been going along and not paying attention to your child’s efforts to grow-up, find some time to sit and reflect on who your child is today. See them with ‘present time’ eyes. Acknowledge their growth and what they have accomplished; from learning to walk and talk to learning to read and write. The ‘growing-up’ of our children is an amazing process and because it happens right in front of our eyes, we oftentimes miss it.
Let your child grow-up. Give him or her the space to discover who they are and who they want to be. Each time you notice your child taking steps toward individuation (standing on their own) take a minute to reclaim some of the energy you have used to support your child. Remember everything is energy – love, recognition, validation – it’s all energy. Pull your energy out of their space so that they can fill themselves with their own information. Imagine a magnet that lets you collect up your energy that they no longer need. This will benefit you as much as it will benefit them. Also take this time to validate yourself. Imagine a great big pitcher filled with self-validation and pour the self-validation into the top of your head so that rather than needing your child to feel validated you can start your own journey of learning to validate yourself.
Admittedly this aspect of parenting is a balancing act. We need to know when and how to offer the space and freedom to grow, while still proving the support and guidance our children need. I believe that using your ‘present time’ eyes and really seeing your child for who they are in this moment will support you in this next phase of conscious parenting.
© 2012 Christine Agro
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Christine Agro is a spiritual teacher, clairvoyant, naturopath, Master Herbalist, conscious mom and author of 50 Ways to Live Life Consciously as well as of The Conscious Living Wisdom Cards (Special Moms’ Edition). Christine is founder of The Conscious Mom’s Guide , a membership site where she helps support you on your own journey of living life consciously and on your journey of being a Conscious parent. You can also join Christine on Facebook. To contact Christine, invite her to speak or to schedule an appointment with her please email her.