How to Love your Kids Without Wanting to Kill Them!
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I’m your Host Epikliz
How to Love your Kids Without Wanting to Kill Them!
“Children are the living messages we send to a time we will not see.” John F Kennedy
So as a Caribbean /West Indian parent I think, on retrospect, that if I had any idea what parenting was going to be like I would have learnt to make sponge cake instead. You see everyone likes sponge cake and when you are done you would have made a few people happy, satisfied friends and families “sweet tooth’s” and then washed the dishes and gone to bed… and it would have been all over! But Parenting????? Oh, my goodness!!! Talk about a ride you got on that you sometimes wish you could get off. Notwithstanding, I still find myself actively parenting after three decades and for the most part loving it! Why?? Because children – I have come to know for certain- are blessings and a joy to have in your life. Yet they can get on your very last nerves and I personally feel at times like I want to strangle them.
Let me see, “How to love your children without killing their spirit – or them- as we watch them grow.” That should be the name of my next book – bound to be a best seller!! For now, let me just say that as parents we signed up for a test for which we were not prepared and given a responsibility for little minds that we had absolutely no idea nor resource to adequately care for. Why do I say this? Well because it really takes that “village to raise a child”. In fact, there is a theory that states that it takes at least five (5) clear thinking adults to raise one child. The extended family was closer to this yet the capitalist society we live in insists that the nuclear family is the way to go. Robbing us of our support systems and forcing us to live in isolation depending on our spouses at best or, in many cases, ourselves alone to do the challenging task of raising these individuals to one day be a part of the very society which denied us of the resources we needed to care for them.
But let us face it guys and gals, how many “clear thinking adults” were there in your life when you were a child? Who was always there when you needed someone? Who was both physically and emotionally available ALL the time for you to go to when you were in need? I do not know about you, but I spent most of my childhood trying to “make it on my own” I made up stories in my head (and still do) to explain things away and console myself about situations that seemed out of whack. I found ways to cope but never felt 100% supported (or even 50% for that matter) for my thoughts and or actions. Fear was instilled in me from the get-go just to breathe and I believe a lot of my life was lived in this fear (and perhaps still is.)
So how do we square this ominous circle? How do we offer our children the space that we never had to grow up in a way we never did and hopefully achieve things we never dreamed of? Yes, how do we prepare our children in a way that sends a message to the world in a time that we will never see? My experience has told me that it starts with one – Me! I was fortunate enough as a young adult to stumble upon a process that taught me how to take an introspective look at myself to find the ways that my life had been stagnated based on my early hurts as a child. I have spent most of my parenting years uncovering my pain and releasing myself from its grip so that I could have more access to my best thinking and trust me this has made my life as a parent – a single parent at that – much more satisfying and successful than I could have imagined. You can do this too! In fact, this is the best way I know to ensure that we can support our children so that they have the room they need to flourish. You se00e our children are not extensions of ourselves but brilliant human beings who came through us with a God-given purpose to fulfil if we could only protect them from the oppressive society and care of them lovingly until they are old enough to spread their wings and fly as they were meant to. How do we love them and trust their thinking and get out of the way so they can shine? That is, I think, the challenge at hand of every parent.
Make sure and check back next week so I can share more on how to use the attention of another in a listening partnership that will ultimately relieve your stresses and make you a better parent. This is a must because we need to preserve the minds of our children so they can lead us out of the mess we are in today.
When I was a child, I thought my PARENTS knew everything, then I became a teenager. As a teenager I thought my FRIENDS knew everything then I became an adult. As an adult I was certain that I knew EVERYTHING, then I got married. Well as a married woman I thought, for a moment (very briefly) that my husband knew everything – thank goodness that did not last exceptionally long but soon enough I had kids and the internet and social media became a thing. It was ONLY then that I finally figured out who REALLY knows everything. If you said your kids, you are absolutely right. This is Epikliz saying goodbye on this Absolute Monday and hoping to see you again next week. Chao for now!
“You may give them your love but not your thoughts for they have their own thoughts. You may house their bodies but not their souls for their souls’ dwell in the house of tomorrow which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.” Khalil Gibran