As we celebrate Thanksgiving in USA this week, I want to start off with a poem* by Kahlil Gibran, called On Giving, from The Prophet (1923):
[…] There are those who give little of the much which they have—and they give it for recognition and their hidden desire makes
their gifts unwholesome.
And there are those who have little and give it all.
These are the believers in life and the bounty of life, and their coffer is never empty.
There are those who give with joy, and that joy is their reward.
And there are those who give with pain, and that pain is their baptism.
And there are those who give and know not pain in giving, nor do they seek joy, nor give with mindfulness of virtue;
They give as in yonder valley the myrtle breathes its fragrance into space.
Through the hands of such as these God speaks, and from behind their eyes. He smiles upon the earth.[…]
CONSCIOUS PARENTING IS ABOUT GIVING.
CONSCIOUS PARENTING WOULD NOT BE POSSIBLE WITHOUT THE CAPACITY TO GIVE.
Every day I am in awe with our capacity to give to our children, and our families. Of course, this is by design; nature (or evolution) had to come up with a mechanism to ensure this deep bond through the brain’s flooding with oxytocin during childbirth (for dads, during the witnessing of childbirth).
Children need us until they are well in their 20’s. Adolescence is said to end around 26 years old. I mention this to put in perspective the impatience of our culture to push children into “becoming independent” when they are toddlers.
During this week of Thanksgiving 2023, I encourage you to pause and recognize the massive effort it takes to be a parent:
- sleepless nights
- countless driving
- infinite amounts of scheduling, planning and coordinating calendars
- hundreds of hours of empathetic listening (containing)
- hundred of hours of crying when nobody was looking
- the never-ending work on ourselves for our own healing, presence and playfulness
I also encourage you this week to recognize the BEAUTY AND THE GOODNESS IN YOUR CHILD:
- building resilience
- facing trauma, small or more significant
- going to school
- playing sports
- making friends
- DISCOVERING WHO THEY ARE.
FEW LAST THOUGHTS:
- please be mindful about how much you post on social media this week, and during the holidays especially;
- be fully present with your children for no other reason than being with them; give the phone a break;
- kids have no say in what we post with them/ about them online, and that’s not fair; plus- they are not trophies to be displayed;
- be kind, be gentle, be patient- with yourself, first, and others.