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Thursday, June 2, 2016

Balance--Yours and Others

The last few days, my life has been about helping to balance my family. My little one is worried about next year's teacher--which class will she be in? And what will it be like without the best friend since forever---which we know is being recommended by this year's amazingly wise and wonderful teacher plus the school social worker. 

Then, another child has chosen a very challenging goal, and seems to be surmounting it--but, like the hero of a novel, the challenge has to be something desperately wanted, and there have to be ups and downs--and, of course, the tension must rise as the novel goes on. 

And then, this one's new supervisor may have undiagnosed, untreated OCD and seems to be a bit of a bully. How best to cope? 


Plus, everybody, including me, is dealing with anniversary date reactions--my father, his mother, and school trauma from a few years ago, trauma so bad it engulfed the whole family that long spring a few years ago.

Helping loved ones balance is a delicate art. First, you have to stay pretty damned centered yourself--tough to do when income may be threatened or a spouse or a child is really suffering. 

You have to dodge the child's outburst while seeing straight to the heart of the pain and once you have, you must lead the child straight into the heart of that sadness and sit with them while they remember. Punishment will accomplish nothing in a case like this. Instead, if you help the child identify the particular kind of misbehavior that comes from pain--and to head it off by asking for support through the sadness--you have given your child a tool for life--their tool, their memory, not yours. Because if you fix things for your children--or your spouse--you might feel all noble and kind, but they don't get to forge tools of their own to use forever after. 

Of course, it helps that I am not a seer, nor do I know every answer. It helps to know that some of my balance comes from taking time to myself yesterday, learning something new and interesting, and being able to spend some time with an honest friend, a person of depth and courage. 
And it really helps to know that husband and children will be there to help me, when I, too, need balance. 

So, I'm feeling very blessed today. Tired--the class and friend ran late--but blessed. Much more this:

Than this: 

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