My current profile picture across social media was taken August 2013 before I took a dive. It was a low time. I’ve been reluctant to take a photo of myself in recent years. Who wants to see a picture of someone in a state of desperate physical and emotional health?
Even though I am looking more healthy these days my pride has been reluctant to show how much I aged. Why do we have these fears? People who see me face to face see how I look!
It took a lot of courage to actually take this photo a few months ago. And then more courage to post it here today and write about myself.
Since early adulthood I have been on a path of self transformation and this is one step I needed to make on that path.
So, how do I actually spend my time?
I have three hats at the moment. And am equally passionate about all of them.
Hat 1. I educate people about how therapeutic essential oils can impact all areas of our life, as they have done mine.
Hat 2. I tutor young children who are struggling at school with maths and English, including anyone who is dyslexic.
Hat 3. I am on the board of a non prophet organisation which disseminates information for those who are on a spiritual path combining the wisdom of all the world’s religions.
So there it is I’ve done it and like most things we fear it wasn’t as bad as I thought.
I read a blog post on the No Spank Challenge that broke my heart.
It was written by Dare Ellis called, And We Try a Little Harder. She has a compelling writing style. Not only does she write from the heart with humility and candour, but paints a vivid picture.
What broke my heart was not the description of her upbringing, both in her natural home and her first foster home, although it certainly was enough to do that.
What I was most moved by was this passage:
I was not raised in a gentle household, and so the example I had growing up was to meet force with force. The reactions built and trained into me are not gentle ones. I must overcome the urge to yell and slap every day. Every. Day. And sometimes I fail and yell at him. And sometimes I find myself trying to manipulate my son the way my father manipulated me. I blur the line of teaching him empathy with trying to make him feel guilty for things. And I hate the ‘me’ inside more every time.
This broke my heart because it doesn’t have to be this way. Dare and countless other parents who also “must overcome the urge to yell and slap every day” don’t have to keep doing the things that cause them to hate themselves.
Like I did.
I was that mother too. And sadly my girls grew up before I discovered what I know now.
My mission is to help those parents who are living this nightmare before it’s too late for their children.
So, what’s the answer?
It’s All Energy
Let’s back up a little. Let’s go back to that little girl or boy we used to be. I’m sure you know the science – the studies that tell us that yelling and spanking cause emotional damage to the child.
Well, we were that child, weren’t we? We got scared when we were yelled at, hit and otherwise abused physically and emotionally. These traumas (both big and tiny) got lodged within our energy system.
You’ve heard that we’re all made up of energy, haven’t you? In fact, nothing in this universe is solid. It’s all made of tiny molecules that vibrate at different frequencies. When something appears to be solid (like a rock), it’s just vibrating at a slower rate than something that appears less substantial (like air).
Just as our bodies have pathways for our blood to travel to different parts of our bodies, we also have energy pathways that are highways for electrical impulses to travel throughout our body too. Have you heard of the phantom limb syndrome of amputees? They often feel pain in the vicinity of where their leg used to be. That’s because the amputation didn’t chop off the energy pathway to the end of the limb.
Anyway, any emotional trauma we sustain creates a blockage in our energy channels. The more traumas we sustain, the more blocked we become. Unless we do something to unblock these pathways, our traumas (both big and tiny), will stay within our energy system.
So using willpower won’t eliminate our anger outbursts. The trauma that caused the anger needs to be released for us to release the anger once and for all.
Sadly, good intentions and willpower will not make us gentle parents. But what I’m about to show you will.
We cannot change our childhood, but we can change the emotional upset that we still hold within us.
I’ve changed how I interact with people (including myself) by using EFT (emotional freedom techniques). I’m much calmer and kinder to myself and other people.
It’s commonly called ‘Tapping’ because it works by tapping on certain spots on the face, torso and hands. These spots tap into the energy pathways that I mentioned before.
It’s important also to get in touch with the emotion (like anger) that you want to release. Getting in touch is best done by remembering a particular event in our past.
There are some words you can use while tapping but many people, including me, just tap and cry, or tap and rant about the event I’m remembering. I get best results when I sit and look at myself in the mirror while I ‘talk’ to the person I’m most upset with (usually my mother).
It’s amazing that after a short while of tapping and feeling the emotion, it will dissipate and be difficult to get back. I then move to the next memory and emotion that pops up.
It’s not magic (it’s science), but it sure feels like magic.
If you want to find out how to do this tapping thing you can learn about it here.
*This was first published by me on the blog EmpoweringChildhood.co.uk. It had over 6,000 views so when we quit that website I thought it was worth republishing here. The following is a useful question and answer comment that I thought was worth republishing also.
What is a parent supposed to do when approaching their child in a calm way does not achieve the desired result? For instance, asking your child calmly to get in their car seat and the child calmly says no and continues playing/running around the car, or in many cases screams no and flails and kicks? I understand, appreciate, and try these calming techniques, but I feel very flustered and helpless when my child does not cooperate. April
That’s a very good question April, I’m glad you asked.
Maybe some readers will be able to add more strategies but here is one answer.
I know getting in the car can be a frustrating business for us adults who have a different agenda to our children. We have things to do and places to go and a schedule to keep.
A child’s main priorities are to have fun and to learn. So if we work with these we’ll obtain their cooperation.
I’m assuming (from experience) that your reference to “in many cases screams no and flails and kicks” is as you’re picking him up and physically putting him in his seat without his cooperation? Or because he’s had experience of you doing this in the past.
That, of course is to be expected. Wouldn’t we do the same if someone did that to us? I know I would. This is what I did with my own children before it occurred to me there was any other way.
But working with the child’s agenda is the easiest and most respectful thing for us to do.
We can try waiting until the child is ready of her own free will to get into the car but that can take a long time. And we may not have that available. We may be in a place that’s unsafe for her to run around the car. I’ve sometimes given a choice of either getting in the car on her own or me helping her.
We could sometimes compromise and insist she get in the car but wait for her to be ready to sit in a buckle her car seat.
However here’s an idea that I cannot claim as my own but sadly I can’t remember who to credit. It’s a strategy that succeeds each time by working with the children’s agenda of having fun.
Why not turn this activity into a game? Use whatever he’s interested in. You could pretend the car is a spaceship, or a digger or a fairy palace, or whatever the child is into at the time. You could take on the persona of a character, talking in a voice that fits that character either suggesting or even giving orders (as appropriate) to enter the imagined place (the car seat) so they can begin the adventure. You can then let the child take it from there and go along with them on their imagined journey.
This works for getting into the car but if we think in terms of what would work with the child’s agenda, then we can come up with other strategies in other situations.
I hope this helps to get your creative juices flowing and more fun into your life.
The Last Day of October
It is a beautiful Autumn day. The sun is shining, the air is crisp in the shade, but the sun warms the air where it shines.
It is probably the last day of the year to comfortably sit in the garden. The first lovely warm day for weeks. I anticipate partaking of one my favourite pastimes, sitting in the sunshine surrounded by greenery.
So I sit in the small patch of sun on the grass nearest the house to eat my lunch. At this time of year the sun, being lower in the sky, illuminates the garden differently. Whereas in September that part of the garden got sun all afternoon, if you’re late for lunch, you miss it and sit in the shade.
All is not lost; the garden is very long and narrow, and all I need to do is up-sticks and move farther away from the house. So I do.
But, my enjoyment is dashed because this part of the garden is engulfed in thick smoke from a neighbour’s garden bonfire. It’s wafting through and around my dry washing hanging on the line. I don’t want to go into the smoke to rescue the clothes and bedding which all reek by now. The smoke keeps billowing; the sun dips behind the roof, and the smoky garden goes shady.
My lovely afternoon is spoiled. I fret. My next door neighbour says the people with the bonfire told him they would warn him next time they burn something. His wife rescued their washing earlier. He told me that they had a very overgrown garden and had a lot more to clear.
Saturday 5th November
The following weekend is another fine day, cold but dry as I hang out my washing. I am about to go out all morning tutoring children, so I write a note to the gardeners.
I understand that you have a lot of overgrowth to clear in your garden.
The bonfire you had the other day caused strong air pollution over a large area. My washing that was drying outside needed two more washes before it no longer smelled of smoke. I was prevented from sitting in the sun because, as you can appreciate, sitting in a cloud of smoke is neither pleasant or healthy. It’s likely that one of the many neighbours surrounding you suffers from asthma, which is a serious condition.
I would, therefore, like to offer a solution. If you hired a shredder, you would save the air and keep your many neighbours happy. You would also have mulch that you can use when you create your new garden.
I wish you a pleasant weekend.
I fold the paper and write Happy Saturday as a greeting.
I spend a while trying to create a non-judgemental message. I would love to improve in this area, so if you have a suggestion on wording it better, please post a comment. I would so appreciate your help.
I walk around the corner to find the house. I know I have the correct one when I find a partially cleared garden with a large charred circle in the middle. I see no postbox to pop my note through. I see the light on in the kitchen, so someone is up. I walk around to the back, and a man walks out of the door. I say “Hello, Can I give you this note?”
He takes it, and I walk back to be in time for my first tutoring session.
I come back after tutoring and shopping for food and notice a bunch of flowers sitting in the porch. It is an autumnal bunch of Chrysanthemums. I move closer to read the note.
Sorry about the bonfire and your washing!!
Look forward to meeting you.
John, Maddy, Oscar and Josie
Oh! That’s so sweet! I want to rush round to say thank you but my foot is hurting, and I need to cook my lunch because it’s nearly mid-afternoon. I will go another day.
Let’s keep in touch. Let me send you posts as they come hot off the keyboard.
Ah sweet poison!
Yes, I am sensitive to sugar. I find it addictive. I have periods in my life where I have no refined sugar at all in anything – read all the labels and rarely eat processed food anyway. But sometimes I have sugar and then find it incredibly difficult stop.
It affects me in several ways.
It makes my muscles tense and if I have it regularly I start to feel like an old woman whose body hurts when I use it. Cannot lift my legs up high and need to sit down often because I get so tired.
It also affects my mind. I cannot think clearly. My mind is fuzzy. I find it difficult to think of the words to convey my meaning. My mother had this problem too. She would present as having early signs of dementia when she indulged in a lot. This would dissipate when I had control over her diet and cut out the sugar.
It affects my mood. I get moody and depressed, irritable and angry. When I was younger; a teacher and a mother of young children, I would fly off the handle every day. I hated myself for it. I eventually ‘came off sugar’ for my own children’s sake and they would immediately know if I slipped back.
I also noticed it creates a hardness of heart that dissolves when I refrain from the substance.
I have noticed in some young people that it creates a hyperactivity big time when they indulge in sugar.
One adult told me that when they were a child and had sugar binges they felt out of control. It felt like something was vibrating inside that wanted to get out. It manifested as the child talking a whole lot of nonsense. Prancing around in order to relieve the sensation which needed to get out. They felt super agitated and felt even more agitated when someone uttered a thought that they needed to calm down. All this was very tiring which resulted in low sugar blues.
Does this sound like ADHD to you? Maybe instead of taking Ritalin a child could just refrain from sugar. Easier said than done. It would need a detox program and a willingness to come off the substance.
Writing this now makes me wonder if bipolar is in fact sugar sensitivity.
Does anyone have any relevant experience to add? I would love to hear about it.
Oops! In this post Money is Love I said I would post another one tomorrow. Well, after several tomorrows, here is the follow-up.
When I gave myself the journalling question “What does money mean in my life?” I was shocked to find myself writing about my mother for the first few days.
I concentrated on lack. Lack of love, lack of nurturing. It’s amazing really because compared to some children my childhood was fine. I was fed and watered. But I was also shouted at, talked to in an irritable manner, slapped on the legs and made to stand in the corner. My mother also used emotional blackmailed frequently.
You get used to things and it didn’t seem so bad at the time, except when I was a teenager I remember delaying going home from school most days because I didn’t like the unpredictable nature of not knowing what mood my mother would be in. I also remember several times crying on the way to school because of some upset at home just before I left.
Anyway, back to my journaling…. I wrote about incidences in my childhood for a few days and then I noticed a change. My writing started to get more positive, less focused on the lack and more on the abundance, the joy and the gratitude. Lovely!
I realised when sitting down to write this post that I’ve stopped journalling these past few days. Life has got in the way, as it does. So now I’m going to continue, so I thank you dear readers for ‘reminding’ me that it would be good to continue this journey.
Does anyone else journal? What is your experience?