Thursday, March 21, 2013
People always said that I'd see things differently when I was a parent myself.
The implication was that I'd see things from a parent's point of view, an angle more lenient toward parents in general and perhaps more in line with my own parents' perspective.
The opposite has happened.
Nobody warned me that when you become a parent, you find yourself reliving each stage of your own childhood from your own child's perspective, feeling that experience again as if it were happening to your own son/daughter. Reflecting with an adult's understanding, but a child's emotions. This can be traumatizing.
This year has been physically and emotionally difficult for me: grief, anxiety, tears, pain, panic attacks, PTSD triggers, reactions to medications that were supposed to help. So I'm back in therapy. I've started practicing yoga. I've cut more negative people and influences out of my life. I walk out stress on the treadmill or outdoors. I am forging new supportive and nurturing relationships. Like a healthy child, I'm developing the ability to self-soothe.
I'm learning a new dance-step for life these days: two steps forward, one step back. Some days I definitely see progress. I feel brave and take risks and instead of disaster, good things happen! Each time builds my confidence for the future.
My children help me more than they know. When they express their own feelings and stand up for their own opinions, I'm proud. When they want to be close to me, to listen to me, to snuggle with me, to ask how I'm feeling, to tell me about their play or their favorite stories, I feel a wound inside being healed. Knowing that they feel nurtured and safe with me gives me hope and joy.