The journey of motherhood has been a really interesting one for me. There are some shocking discoveries and realizations I made about myself. The biggest, being that I never wanted children.
Actually, once in my twenties in pursuit of corporate success, I remember saying to my ex-husband "CHILDREN! I don't even know what I would do with a child!” If you could have witnessed my interaction with children during this point in my life it was awkward to say the least.
Then, I had my first child at age 26, second one at age 28 which opened me up to loving my babies, but I was still partially awkward with my children and particularly awkward with other peoples' children. That was until I met a woman on Twitter, who helped me heal my inner child.
This woman's name is Di Riseborough. She is a life intuitive strategist who is world-renowned for teaching forgiveness. Over the course of a year, Di showed me how many of my life experiences in childhood had made my inner child scared, which is why my interaction with children left me feeling so inadequate. She asked me to name my inner child, so I named her after my Hebrew name Yaffa. She made me go out and get a doll that I had to carry around in my purse and everywhere else in my life.
I forgot the doll all the time. Every week Di would ask, how do you expect for Yaffa to trust you if you can't even remember she is there? Would you forget your own children? I told Di, I felt awkward being a grown woman going around with a doll and that my children are human beings not DOLLS! She told me Yaffa can feel your awkwardness which is why she is scared to even come around. So, I committed to the pursuit of becoming comfortable with this doll. We had dinner together, slept together - I felt like a complete idiot in the beginning! Though as time moved on Yaffa became a normal part of my everyday living and now resides in my office. I have passed the test according to Di. Though how I knew I passed the test was not by going around with this doll, it’s how I began to interact with my children and how they started to interact with me.
My boys are two of the sweetest little people I know. Have you heard their audiobook? :) Here's what I learned:
1. Trust. This was a foreign concept to my inner child. Yaffa came from a place of shaming, abandonment and neglect, but when I became open to healing myself she began to periodically show up. My children taught me how to trust people again with their pure and infectious love. As my children and I grew together they showed me the power of unconditional love. It doesn’t matter if I make a mistake they are always going to love me.
2. Share Your Flaws Openly. With the love Langston and Aaron have brought into my life, I don't take their love for granted either. Many of us were raised by a generation of parents who believe that their word is the law whether right or wrong. Well, parents we make mistakes too. And in order for that love to strengthen and for our children to trust us, we must be willing to show humility when we wrong our children. Whether we falsely accuse them of doing something or get too upset over a situation while disciplining. We need to find comfort in this word S-O-R-R-Y. The more we humble ourselves to our children the greater a bond we will establish by creating an environment for their inner child to stay, and draw our inner child back into our lives.
3. Let It Go. We need to learn how to have fun again. Those months working with Di I began to learn how to play again. I began playing games with my kids whether it was soccer, basketball, board games or just at the park. I just let everything go to feel the experience of what it was like to be a child again. I watched my kids play so carefree and it made me realize that I was robbed of those experiences when I was their age. But now, I can heal those memories and create new ones with my children.
What's ironic now is when I look at everything I've accomplished in my journey, my children have not only been the greatest inspiration, they are my life purpose. My inner child is now fully integrated in my life to experience the ebb and flow of life’s wonders, full circle.