When school started this year while I was waiting for my 10 year old son, I was watching the children as they were walking to their parents or lift home from school. The one thing that I noticed was that their shoulders for slumped and their faces were sad. It inspired me to write this poem :
If you see my shoulders slumped and my face sad.
I have had a hard day, don’t say school is not so bad.
Take the time to ask me how I feel.
Be present enough to care that the connection is real.
Put down your phone and put your eyes on me.
I am more important than anything on your device you see.
I don’t always know how to tell you how I feel.
Please make sure I always know and feel that your love for me is real.
From your child
Everyday since then I have made a concerted effort to spend a few minutes each afternoon chatting to random kids and familiar ones just to let them know that someone sees them. I also hug those who are needing it and it seems they all do. I look around at all the angry, irritated and impatient adults in the parking area wanting to grab them and shake them saying; “Can’t you see your child needs you to connect with them after a long, hard day at school!” Then I deconstruct my response and move from judgement to compassion for the parents and think, maybe no one did that for them as children, so they are not sure how.
We cannot change the way we were raised but we can change the way we raise our children. Increasing our awareness is the key to do this. Here is some insight from Misty Swanson in her article, How to develop self-awareness :
“Self-awareness is having a conscious knowledge of your traits, beliefs, personality, thoughts, feelings, emotions, strengths and weaknesses.
“It helps you to navigate the world around you with an overview of who you truly are, and how you interact with others and act in different situations. It’s a non-judgemental understanding of who you are and what makes you tick.
Being self-aware gives you introspection and is a key skill in personal development and emotional intelligence.”
Getting to truly know yourself is vital to being better parents so please take the time to work on your inner landscape, unpacking your emotional baggage and allowing yourself to be fully present in each moment of your lives. If we don’t, we will be forever stuck in our past and a victim of our own negative thoughts.
So to end of this post, I would like to say to all the parents out there, please stop adding stress to your child’s already stressful life. Don’t dump your unconscious issues onto their tiny shoulders.