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  • Writer's pictureSherise Reid

Much of parenting is about acknowledging that our children’s process is more about them and less about you.


Much of parenting our children is in the ability to remove our stories about what we think they are experiencing and being with what they are actually experiencing.

 

Our children’s attachment to us depends on our level of presence.

How do we teach presence?

We learn to be with what’s present within us.

First.

How else will we know what we are experiencing.

 

Our children have their own experiences.

I watched how my daughter processed the grief of her hamster dying.

How she navigated each emotion.

Asked for what she needed.

How I was able to be with her.

The ability to discern, in the moment, that she was asking for all of me.

There was no time to be with the fears, the stories I had created in my mind about what was happening.

I had to call my therapist. My mum. My friend. Because omg, I was having to make some decisions I had never made before and trust that they were the right ones.

For my daughter.

Not for me.


I had an idea about how I wanted her to experience death.

I knew that I wanted her to know that it was a normal part of the cycle of life.

Yet, I had never taught this before.

This was my opportunity to experience it.

All of the work done so far bringing us to this moment.

How present could I be with her?

Without making it about me.

Making it about what I’m doing or not doing right? (Mother guilt, am I right?)


I had to trust that I had what I needed, to be with the moment, whatever presents itself

Over 4 days, she cried, she threw things, she called her dad, her friend, her aunty. She prayed; she sang. She asked for another hamster.

She danced.

She watched TV & played video games.

She laughed.

She held her hamster’s body. She stroked her and blew her kisses.

She cried some more.

She refused burial and made her a box of special things.

She cried.

She prayed.

We buried her with her brother and grandparents present.



She remembered through sharing stories and learned through sharing fears.

She was validated in her grief process even though I was very detached from her hamster.

She didn’t need me to love her hamster as much as she did.

She just needed me to witness her grief.

 

I empathized when remembering my own first experience of grief and how I didn’t feel like it was welcome.

I didn’t feel that my grief was welcome.

So, I learned to welcome my grief.

Welcome it.

Sit with it, just as I do my daughter.

Allow it to be present.

And I with it.

How many emotions do we resist sitting with?

Do you recognize them when they come?

How are you with disappointment, guilt, regret, sadness, anger, resentment, grief?


Much of coming home to yourself will be more about how you are experiencing life and less about the stories you created about your experience.


You see, the stories we carry shape our view.

What stories are you seeing your children through?

Your world through?

Which lenses do you wear?

 

When you realise that you can change the lenses in your view, you understand that you get to create how you experience your reality.


If I saw my daughter’s grief through the lens of guilt, I would have perpetuated a situation I would have to be guilty about and thus validated my experience.

I was able to meet her where she was and provide evidence of the mother I am really striving to be.


For me.

 

I then get to see that I already am.

And it already is so.


What lenses are you wearing today?

 

Each day, each moment we get to choose.

Again, and again.

 

It’s not always going to be this way.

Things change.

Over time.

What you are committing to becomes habit.

And eventually becomes second nature.

Until it’s not.

 

And you will know.

 

Keep turning inward my love.


My invitation for you is to ask yourself, where are you already the mother you are striving to be? How do you know?


The mother in me sees the mother in you!


You are doing wonderfully, keep going.


Love to you and your blessed beautiful children.


Sherise xxx

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Suzanne Reid
Suzanne Reid
05 Μαρ

Wow thank you for sharing this beautiful journey with your daughter my granddaughter through her grief. I was also able to be there for my granddaughter in a way that was new for me to consider what she needed in her youngness( if that’s such a word). It was so lovely to honour and support her experience and process.

You are a wonderful mum, thank you for sharing. And for the questions that you have offered for consideration.

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