Friday, February 28, 2014

Announcing eCourse on Discipline Part II

practical strategies for love: the heart of discipline
~ a month of practice
Oh dear parents, you know what it is to be a parent. We have moments of sweetness and tenderness that fill and expand our hearts in ways we never imagined possible.

And we have those moments of frustration, when we want to stomp our feet and yell to the universe, "Get me out of here! Take me away, now, please?!"

I have had moments when that little voice inside is saying to me, "This is not what I thought it would be like to be a parent, to be a family. This is so not what I imagined."

Parenting brings out our very best and our worst. Somedays it is hard to find that middle ground, to breath and keep on going, with humor.

In the past few decades, we have seen an explosion of "how to" parenting books. From the "do as I say, not as I do," authoritarian mode, of angry outbursts, to sticks and carrots, to positive affirmation.

But that there is another way. One that rises from within, out of our own experience, out of our own being that is based on the developmental picture of the child and grounded in healthy attachment. One that is sparked by the creative flame in each parent, so it is unique to you. Conscious. Connected. Creative.

For the month of March, for 31 days in a sort of intensive boot camp, I will share practical strategies, based on the developmental picture of the child, that we will practice together through the month.

Come join a wise, warm and engaging community of others on this path.

We'll examine habits that are not working and find new ways to create an inner and outer environment to help bring harmony and breathing to our days. we look at the language we use and find creative responses to situations that are challenging.

I'll do this through the use of tips, examples, pictures of challenging situations and creative approaches.

As a parent of nearly twenty years, teacher and care giver to many children over the years, I bring a good deal of experience in sticky situations. I also have had great teachers throughout my life who have inspired me wit their patience, wisdom, humor and grace. I hope to pass that along to you in this month of practical application.

Registration is Open
this eCourse runs from March 1 to March 31st
you may return indefinitely after the course ends and closes to new members on March 31st
the fee is $25

Registration Options:
:: eCourse only is $25 Sign up here
:: eCourse and all the Living Curriculum Program support materials for March  $45 ~ learn more on what that includes here
:: an eCourse for each month of the year (12), the Living Curriculum program for Twelve months ~ $495

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The First Born

Oh, that first child. Sometimes referred to as "the first pancake," the one with whom we test the cooking griddle or perhaps more aptly, the waters of parenting.

My guess is that for many parents, the birth of the first child creates enormous upheaval. 

Imagine, two people who have lived life on their own terms for years suddenly have a small person who is entirely dependent on them for everything: nourishment, warmth, being held, being soothed and stimulated, being kept clean and dry, being moved around, being touched, being wanted, being respected, belonging. The newborn needs care. Immediate care.
So we adults make a huge shift... we go from living our lives as the center point to moving to the periphery, and placing the child in the center of our existence. A baby's needs are so pressing. There is little time to wait with feeding, changing and soothing the newborn baby.

In the beginning, the child is like the little prince or princess, a tiny bit of heaven, who has come to earth and that tiny bit of heaven, that little person, can fill the whole room with his or her peaceful presence.

This is a wet and squishy territory. Our Mama bodies are wet and oozing fluids. Jack Petrasch likens birth to the place where the land meets the sea. A place of wild winds, surf and tides. Forces of nature meet. We are standing at the shore in the wet sand. Then we head west to encounter dry land, mountains and varied terrain.

There comes a time on this journey, when we adults, must assert ourselves as the Queen and Kings of the castle. The royal "we" is born. Time to step into the big shoes. For the little child sees us as being so big, so very big. Step into the royal shoes.

I suspect it is harder for moms because we are biologically primed to be head over heels in love and awestruck by our babies. We are lulled into the dream world of the newborn by our hormones and our bodies, completely driven to nourish and protect this little being with all of our being.

Yet there comes a time to step back, just enough to remember who we are, and to more clearly see this tiny being. For when we are too close, we cannot see clearly. We see only the magical being before us, not the whole picture.

In order for our baby to be the little prince or  princess, he or she must had royal parents too. With the coming of the little prince or princess must come the awakening of the Queen or King. For the prince or princess needs to learn from the royal parents how to be human. 

That is our task and it is a very big and daunting one

What happens for some of us is that the baby remains in the center and we in the periphery. We forget about ourselves and our needs. We forget that we are grown ups with adult lives that were meaningful before we had a baby. We get lost in newborn land.

This is just fine in the beginning, when we are adjusting to life with a newborn, yet over the first few months, our job is to move back into center point.

For the child looks to us to learn what it means to be human. If we are looking at the child to lead us, we won't get anywhere but exhausted and confused.

The baby needs us to be engaged in life. For it is through our example that the child learns and imitate what it is to be human.
So that means time to pull up the big girl panties and Be the Queen. This way we can teach our children how to be in the world.

Small children come with great awareness and connection from the spiritual world to the earth, the material world. They will teach us so much in our lifetimes. Yet they arrive and need to figure out how to be in this world. They know not of day and night, near and far. They are here. And now.

Our task is to step into the center and be the example and the wise and strong, kind and firm, loving and gentle guide.

If this is something you'd like to take up and examine in more depth, join me in my new eCourse Love :: The Heart of Discipline for 4 weeks of work on discipline "from the inside out." here

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