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Everyday Blessings: Section One

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  • Everyday Blessings: Section One

    Hello Everyone,

    How are you doing on reading Section One? Any favorite parts you liked? For me, this part sticks out to me most:

    Page 28:
    "By no means are we suggesting that, in parenting mindfully, there is some ideal standard we have to measure ourselves against or strive to achieve. Mindful parenting is a continual process of deepening and refining our awareness and our ability to be present and to act wisely. It is not an attempt to attain a fixed goal or outcome, however worthy. An important part of the process is seeing ourselves with some degree of kindness and compassion. This includes seeing and accepting our limitations, our blindnesses, our humanness and fallibility, and working with them mindfully as best we can. The one thing we know we can always do, even in moments of darkness and despair that show us we don't know anything, is to begin again, fresh, right in that moment. Every moment is a new beginning, another opportunity for tuning in, and perhaps coming - in that very moment - to see and feel know ourselves and our children in a new and deeper way."

    I love this passage because it reminds me to be patient with myself and not try to attain an unachievable goal. That in every moment I am achieving mindfulness even if I believe I am not.

    As Always,
    Stephanie

  • #2
    This book is so powerful and so much of it resonates with me as I read it. One part that speaks to me now is pg. 15. "And when our own inner resources are depleted, we have to have effective and healthy ways to replenish them, to restore ourselves, without it being at the expense of our children." This is something I strive to do (and struggle with at times) in my own life and what I strive to help other parents do in my work with them as a marital and family therapist. I have a 5 year old (with special needs) who goes to school and a one year old who is home with me. I see clients a few evenings a week. Between all my responsibilities it can be hard to take time to replenish and restore myself. I can see why people are tempted to reach for the quick fix and sleep train their child to get their "me" time in then. (I'm writing this now after having spent quite a bit of time getting my one year old to sleep, knowing he'll be up in a few hours looking for me to nurse.) ;-) However, I'm not willing to get my restoration time in at his expense, so I'm not going to drop him in a crib and blow him a kiss and leave him to cry himself to sleep so I can have some me time. Instead, I find other times for my time. Usually in the morning, when we wake up, my husband has my one year old hang out with him while he gets himself and our five year old ready while I hide out under the covers for an hour or so. On the weekend, I escape to a coffee house and occasionally we get a sitter so we can get out for a couple hours together. I'm also a big believer in mini breaks, throughout the day taking a moment here and there to focus on my breathe, sip a cup of tea, listen to music, look out the window, go for a walk and enjoy the scenery all while in the company of my one year old and also getting together with my friends and their kids to spend time with at our house or theirs or at the park. I've learned that I can't wait for breaks, I need to take them often and regularly even if they are only for a breath. Some breaks I can plan ahead of time, others I grab in the moment whenever the opportunity presents itself. My husband periodically uses a vacation day so I can attend a training or do whatever I need to do. One "big" thing by many peoples standards that we did to find time to replenish ourselves without sacrificing our childrens needs was to stop watching television. Even though the shows we watched were entertaining, they really didn't replenish us or meet any real needs. What little free time we had when the kids weren't around we used watching a show we had tivo'ed. We pulled the plug a couple years ago and started using that time to talk, play cards, light projects around the house, etc. An added bonus is that we save quite a bit of money now that we aren't paying for cable tv or tivo anymore. I think tv distracted us from "being" and was just one more "doing" activity, although a passive "doing" activity. My daughter does watch PBS from time to time and the occasional DVD but much less tv than her friends and less than I think she would if we had cable and tivo! :-) So I think cutting the cord to the tv definitely has helped both us and our kids to be more present in our daily life. Anyway, I think as parents we are tempted to deal with stress by taking breaks by tuning out, but mindfulness is about stress reduction through tuning in, not tuning out. A lot of the popular ways to reduce stress in our culture are all about tuning out- and they don't work. I think people feel unsatisfied with their attempts to reduce stress by tuning out. I know I have been when I have tried to do that in the past.
    Last edited by martinezcs; 10-31-2008, 12:41 PM.

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    • #3
      I've just stumbled across these book club postings and was so motivated by what you've both read, that I've reserved a copy from the library. I will be back to post my thoughts as soon as I can. We're always striving for balance in our lives.

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      • #4
        I think a great question is posed on pg 65. regarding "cry it out" "what might we be resisting, or protecting ourselves from, when we distance ourselves from a baby's distress?"

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        • #5
          this part resonates with me now and i'm going to work on being mindful about this....
          pg 84 "any behavior can be seen in its worst light, or it can be seen in a more accepting and benign way.....to break out of them takes ongoing, moment to moment awareness. We need to be aware of what we are saying, how we are saying it, and what effect we are having on our children."

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          • #6
            Remember that you can talk with Myla and Jon now in the forum... if you are a member it is free! I can't wait to see you there!

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            • #7
              i am a member of api but when i click on that link it doesn't work. i emailed the memberships coordinator like it says to get access but i haven't heard back from anyone.

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              • #8
                Hello there, I've forwarded your username over to Melissa for her to provide you with access. We have to verify membership before providing access since to access for free is only available for members. In the future you shouldn't have to do this :-0

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