Kids: love and gratitude

This is a picture of me with Zara, almost one year ago. I absolutely love this picture because it is a reflection of how much I love her. When I look at it, I see the love, I feel it and I am at peace. I love her and I am grateful for her every day, really and truly.

I sometimes look back at my life and wonder how it is that I never felt like I was a blessing or that I was special or that I was a gift to my parents, to the world?  I’m starting to think that is how it “should” be as we live here on this planet, that we feel loved and appreciated by those closest to us, and if I can be really bold, by everyone.  Aren’t we all special, unique and beautiful?  Aren’t we all so much more than the wounds we carry, from this life and others past, so much more than our bodies, than our families, than our jobs, than our perfect lives?  What about the connection to the heart, to our true selves?  That is where our true beauty lies and I’m starting to see, as I evolve and open, that we are all truly grateful and full of love at our core, and once we can even get a small glimpse of our truth, then gratitude flows from there and so does the wonder, love and appreciation of life.

I remember when our daughter Zara was born in early 2009, I was holding her, I was so full of love, so in awe, as so many of us are when we first have a child.  I remember thinking she was such a blessing, such a gift and that I was so grateful she was born, that she chose us as her parents.  I have kept those feelings for her although I have lost touch with them in some of my darker moments, when I was fighting the darkness within me, the pity I had for myself, for never feeling like I was as loved as I was loving her.  Somehow though, I knew that those feelings weren’t where I wanted to be living, I didn’t want that darkness to take over our beautiful lives together.  Thankfully, I read some amazing parenting books that helped me overcome some of those feelings and I’ve since been working with an energy healer to get to the core of them and to release them so that I’m not having to fight those thoughts off, they have just disappeared.

So now, I truly feel like I am almost always in awe of her and grateful to her for being in our lives.  I love the sound of her feet running through our house, I love her giggles, I love watching how fearlessly she cries when she is upset (I always hide my face, I want to get to a point where I can express an emotion without feeling like I need to hide it or my face), I love snuggling with her, reading stories with her, playing with her, watching her pick up worms and dig holes for them, see her unloading the groceries, watch her make new friends and try new things with her homeschool group or at her swimming lessons.  I love being with her.  I feel like I have given myself permission to be her mom and to be me too, instead of just only being her mom, trying to “over-love” her and “over-protect” her so she would never feel as sad as I did inside.  Now that I know it is impossible that she will feel that way, that same sadness, I have (with some amazing coaching from our family’s energy healer Jean Brazeau, some brilliant support and coaching from my husband Robbin, and lots of love from my own heart to me) given myself permission to be me and that has allowed her to be more free from me and to learn more about who she is.  As such, I am truly grateful to her and I love her dearly.  Through her joining our family, Robbin and I have found personal freedom, greater love and gratitude and so much more fun and enjoyment of life!!

That leads me to wonder why I grew up not knowing that children (including myself) were awesome, that they are fun and giggly and so full of love?  I can’t possibly be the only one!!!  There must be others like me who thought that kids were just there and not much else?  And to those who are/were like me in their thoughts and beliefs about children I say where do those beliefs and thoughts come from?  We are all born as brilliant beings of light and love, it is impossible not to see this in a newborn child.  The only reason we lose that light is because it is not nurtured, for some it is stamped out until there are no traces of it.  We are all brilliant, the light still burns deep inside, it can be re-ignited.  I feel like I can say this because my own light has been re-ignited and I have watched others go through the same processes with Jean and they now see so much more of their own power, their own truth, just as Robbin and I are.

What can we do about the children and how we see them and how we treat them?  Let’s make sure they are loved, not because they should be, but because we want to, because it is nearly impossible not to love them.  As we love them and nurture them, we will nurture ourselves and it will empower us to move beyond the darkness that is not us, to a place of love and gratitude.  I read this fantastic book called The Five Love Languages of Children ( it explains how all people have a love tank and that each person has different needs to fill up their tank:

  • acts of service (sewing a patch on a favorite pair of pants, offering to clean up when you see they are too tired to do it)
  • gifts (they recommend limiting this, but really putting effort into the gift because they love the thought and preparation and even the wrapping of the gift)
  • touch (hugs, kisses, rubbing, physical contact)
  • words of affirmation (compliments, I love you)
  • quality time (full attention for a period of time)

It gives tips on how to recognize your child’s love language so that you can respond accordingly for filling up their tank.  I read this and I immediately recognized my love languages (touch, quality time and words of affirmation) and I realized that I wasn’t touched as much as I would have liked (I remember my mom saying I didn’t like hugs, maybe I didn’t, but I needed them!!) and the words “I love you” weren’t used much in our house.  So there you go, this seems like a pretty easy solution to providing that love that children so desperately need and it can also translate directly to your relationship with your spouse (there is another book for adults too, although I think you can just read one and apply it across the board).  Maybe if we all spent a little more time realizing what our own love needs are and those of our immediate family (spouses and children), then we might just live in a world full of more love and gratitude that flows naturally.  Maybe if we can focus on our children and on our selves, and meeting those needs, we will laugh more, feel better, see the love in the world and just maybe, we’ll actually think to say, “thanks so much for being part of my life, I love you so much.”  I made up this song for our daughter, a long time ago now, even before I had opened up my heart to the full potential of love and it is like this,

“Thank you Zara, thank you Zara, thank you Zara, for being a part of our lives.”  I made up the tune, it actually sounds pretty sweet (tee hee, I think I made it up, but chances are it’s a modified tune from some kids song we were singing at the library!!!).  So I sang it to her before she was 2 and she said, “you’re welcome mommy.”  Enough said.  Love and gratitude.  A amazingly perfect and beautiful combination, even if you don’t have kids, there must be someone you want to thank for being a part of your life.  Step out from behind the wall and say it.  Know that the wall around you isn’t real, you can step beyond it and still be safe in this world.  Love and gratitude.   Could it really be that simple?


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