I wonder about how this season of pandemic is traumatizing our kids, who already have a history of trauma. Then I see the irony. Because I feel increasingly traumatized as a parent.
I am tired of nagging. I have always made a conscious effort not not nag. But as I repeat the same encouragement or correction daily, with a persuasive voice, a mindful approach, and a creative way, I realize I nag. And the more I repeat myself the less effective I feel.
That being said, during this season of mental exhaustion, discomfort, worry, we slip away. We disconnect. We do it consciously at first, just to recharge a bit. And soon after we feel bothered, irritated, by the increasing needs of the other.
I have slipped away from recharging to the Vine. I don’t feed my mind with news or politics. And that has been really good abs healthy. But I can’t live suspended in nonpartisan land. I must know who I am and where I’m going. What my identity is.
I picked up my Bible and read my daughters a proverb. Last time I corrected Jackie I brought in the authority of God over her and us. And our beat intentions in parenting her. Our earnestness as well as shortcoming. Anyway, the verse my eyes fell on, said to not despise God’s rebuke, because His correction resembles the one of a father/mother who corrects the child he/she loves. A parent rebukes out of love. It soothes my mind. Then I continued with my reading. And I remembered something an adoption specialist said about what children need to thrive. They need warmth. A warm household. Warm parents. We prepare so much. And it’s a good thing we do. Emotional intelligence and wisdom complement our love as parents.
Today I decided to make a conscious effort to express more words of affirmation to my daughters. Mainly because I use language to correct. And as I speak kindly to them, I feel more warmth toward them. And in the virtuous cycle ( I don’t know if this is a thing but I was thinking about the opposite of the vicious cycle). And all this warmth brings forth a joy in holding them, and letting them hug my leg as I cook, or snuggle against me as I drink my coffee. They cling to me with hunger to be seen, caressed, hugged. It doesn’t come natural to snuggle so much, but as I take the first honest step, the next one comes easier and they relax too. And let go of me some. To my delight of seeing them embrace independence and confidence.
Who doesn’t want a warm household? I want a joyous home to live in. We make steps to being considerate of each other’s needs, preferences, boundaries and slowly become adults who enjoy each other’s company in earnest.