Parenting Michael has been nothing but not interesting. We have had many ups and downs on the road of exceptional family life as I’ve shared in this blog, but one thing that has truly struck me as extraordinary has been how practicing gratitude in the rest of my life by meditating on my blessings, has helped me see all sides of Michael’s character (as well as my own) in a whole new way. It is so tempting when things are stressful or going wrong with you or your child to think all of life is doomed or that things will never be calm and happy again. This is so not true. Life, like our kids, always has its ups and downs. By practicing being grateful for the small and big things in our lives as human beings, all our lives, as individuals, parents, partners, friends etc., we are opening ourselves up to seeing everything in a more positive frame or in a growth framework.
Michael has made MASSIVE improvements in how he has been learning to self-regulate. He has grown up a lot too and shows greater maturity in how he is handling everything in his life these days. But what has helped me see all of this has been my own massive growth as an individual. Through meditating, nature walks, writing, going regularly to a spa or soaking in a bath to connecting with like minded women friends, I have been finding my center. I have been rediscovering who I am deep inside and the blessings I want to remember each day and share with the world. I know that the way I am living my life is reflecting this as I have received a lot of, “you radiate a positive energy” “you are always happy and calm.” I also think that Michael senses this ease in my mind and attitude. It has helped our relationship a lot too as it takes another turn where Michael moves away from being dependent on me for everything and moving towards relying on himself to make decisions. Yet, he still knows I am there to bounce ideas off of. I think he senses I am calmer to do this with. I do my best to reiterate this calm attitude to him by talking about my personal self-care strategies that help me be strong. Michael knows I start the day with meditation and usually yoga stretches, and that meeting my writer and Mom friends are at the top of my list of priorities for self-care. They all make up my list of things to be grateful for. Family is also on that list, and I make sure to stay in touch as much as I can with family so that Michael knows he has a center and a lot to be grateful for.
Exceptional Parents, how has gratitude or showing gratitude changed you as a parent? Do you parent better when you count your blessings? Of course you do! Don’t ever be afraid, especially in the more difficult times of parenting your child, to look at the silver lining. This does not make you unrealistic about your life or your child’s. It reminds you that though there are hardships in your child’s life and yours, you also have many beautiful happy moments in your life that complete your journey as a human being. You can share this gratitude with your child and then they will learn about balancing all emotions in life. Until next time.