Kids and make-up and other “grown up” things

Our daughter is almost 3 and she loves make-up.  I only wear make-up occasionally and if I do, it’s either pink, light blue, dark blue or green eyeliner and I just put a thin line on my eyelid.  Zara loves it!  She loves watching me do it and trying it out.  I fully support it.  I also fully support her trying on pads when I have my period, I fully support her trying on nail polish and I fully support her putting the blade in the food processor and I fully support her learning to use a sharp knife.

Cooking in the kitchen!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So a few thoughts:

  • kids learn by doing and by imitating
  • kids don’t feel like kids, they feel like people and want to be treated as such, just because they are little doesn’t mean that they can’t do things or shouldn’t try things (with or without our attention and support of course!)
  • if we tell our kids to be careful all the time, they will learn that they are not trustworthy and that they can’t manage things on their own
  • if we can teach our kids about things, like how to put the blade in the food processor, we give them autonomy and responsibility and they will develop their own sense of how exceptionally capable and trustworthy they are
  • baby gates, locks on doors and cupboards are demeaning for children.  why not teach them not to touch the household cleaners, why not teach them how to open a door and then explain that they can really only go out with a parent (age-dependent of course)
  • kids can sense when they are being controlled and if we can let go, our relationship will them will flourish and open

Some of this I’ve learned from being a mom, some of it I’ve learned from some fantastic parenting books such as:

  • The Continuum Concept
  • Adventures in Gentle Discipline
  • Everyday Blessings: The Inner Work of Mindful Parenting
  • Unconditional Parenting
  • The Natural Child and anything on the Natural Child Project website
  • How to Talk so Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk

I think that I will write a post about each of these books and the most amazing important lessons I’ve learned from them as a way to share.  I am so grateful to those authors!

So yes, sometimes Zara wears make-up, sometimes she wears blue, pink and green all at once, and sometimes she puts it vertically across her eyes, but it’s what she wants to do.  There is no right way to wear make up!  I’ve showed her how I do it and now she’s experimenting with it.  At some point, she’ll stop or maybe she won’t and it’s just an expression of her coming through.  I’ve told her make-up, jewellery and clothes are a way to decorate her body, that her body is perfect as it is, but if she wants to decorate it, there are a few ways to do that that can be quite fun.  I wouldn’t be comfortable with her wearing make-up if she felt like she had to in order to be beautiful but because I know it’s from a clear and open and fun place, then I’m cool with it.  Other people notice, some say things, some don’t and I’ve realized that I don’t need to protect her from their responses, whatever they are, because she can totally handle herself.  She’s learning that whatever other people say, it isn’t about her, it’s about them and that if they don’t think she should wear make-up, that it’s their opinion.  I’ll always be there to support her and guide her of course, but I’m also trying to give her credit because she really can handle herself.   For example, one time she was at the hairdresser’s and the lady said “oh, can you count to 10?”  And Zara looked at her and just didn’t say anything.  So then the lady said, “okay, so 1 is first, then what,” and she kept, in my mind, badgering Zara to count, and Zara just looked and looked at her and didn’t say a thing.  I only let it go on a for a few seconds before I said, “Zara, you don’t need to count if you don’t want to,” and then I smiled at the hair dresser.  It was only later that I realized that Zara had already told her in her own way that she didn’t want to count, that she is not a circus performer.  Then I said to myself, okay, so I just need to support Zara, teach her about things from a neutral place and then she’ll take care of the rest.  So ya, if we go to the hairdresser’s again while Zara is wearing make-up, I’ll have to wait and see what happens.

Let’s let our kids try things, let’s let them learn about the world by doing, let’s let them figure it out, they already know we know how to do things, let’s let them go for it and teach us at the same time.

The line between caring and taking on responsibility

Well, it seems as though this is really my deal lately.  Trying to find the balance between being there for someone and not taking on their life story as my own.   Letting their journey be their journey….My great friend is going through a lot and much of what I have learned lately could be helpful to her, or so I deemed.  So I tried to cautiously share what I’ve learned, leaving it up to her, without putting pressure on her to see “my way”, without making her feel like she’s doing it “wrong”, because she’s not, and for me, trying to just be there for her and love her.

I was pleased with how it was going and then I felt myself getting caught up in it, feeling like, “oh I need to share this,” with the operative word being need.  Do I really need to share it?  Does she really need to hear it?  Need?  No.  May she find it interesting, yes.That’s where I want to be!!  So, I tried to take a deep breath, pull myself back to the neutral place full of love for her in my heart.  I did it, but not before getting really involved.  You might ask how I knew I was really involved, how did I know that I was taking on too much responsibility, how did I know that part of me was with her in Toronto even though I live in Ottawa?  Well, I have learned that my body is a super useful guide for me.  I noticed that my digestive patterns had changed, like I was getting bloated, and I wasn’t as hungry.  I also noticed that I kept thinking of her and her life, when I really just wanted to be living my own!  I even felt back pain, like the weight of the world on my shoulders.  I think we all know that pain, right below the neck, at the traps…ya, I’ve learned that some of us (me too!) do feel responsible for everything and everyone and by feeling that, by living that, we actually are carrying the weight of the world on our shoulders and then our bodies slow down and we feel heavy and tired.

So I started feeling all of that in my body and I was seeing my mind race all over the place.  I laughed and went, well there you go, I was trying not to have this happen and it has.  The moment I realized it and emailed her to apologize, to let her know that I had gone too far, that I love her and that I support her no matter what.  My body slowly relaxed and by the end of the day, I was feeling much better physically.  Another lesson for me.  I’m glad to keep learning it!  I’ll also be glad when I can stay in that neutral place all the time, when I just radiate love and support without needing to change anything or anyone.  I am learning lots of cool stuff, about healing, the power and love we all have within us, the wisdom of our bodies, how we are not our emotions and I will find the balance with how to share it and live it and not let it become my cause, but rather just a part of me.

Here’s to all my beautiful friends and family members.  I love you all, you are all perfect as you are, I support you in your journeys and I am here for you.  May my heart and mind find the balance of love and caring and not taking on responsibility.

I am not responsible for the world or my friends or my loved ones!!

This is the lesson of the century for me right now.  I am trying to let go of fixing myself, fixing everyone around me.

I am NOT RESPONSIBLE!!  If I care about you, chances are I’ve been responsible for you, I’ve taken on your hardships,

your issues, your stuff and I’ve somehow made it my own.  I’m learning now how harmful that is to me, how much it

slows me down both physically and mentally, and how it really doesn’t help anyone.  I am learning to be, to be

around others and to show them how much I love them and leave it at that.  If I have an opportunity to help

them to see their true selves, beyond the issues, beyond the shit, then that’s beautiful and awesome, if not

then my love is there, without judgment, without criticism, without boundaries.

Thank you to my soul for reaching out to me, to teach me the importance of my letting go.

Thank you to my body for letting me know each time I am holding on to someone and their journey through

physical discomfort or pain.

Thank you to William Linville and his amazing book (http://www.williamlinville.com) that have helped me realize how deep

this is for me and for showing me the way to let it all go.

Thank you to Jean Brazeau, the healer/guide/show me my true self coach who has

helped me shine and rediscover the joys of me and my life.