When we look at a child, we can see their dirty rooms, their unfinished thank-you notes, their messy faces, or we can see THEM.
Which have you been seeing? It's easy to focus on improving, teaching, or even 'fixing' kids rather than seeing and connecting with them.
Last week I was leading a meditation and a student shared an insight she had received from our very wise teacher, "Send your daughter the message--'I love you exactly as you are right now.'" What a great message, right? Let's do it. Let's tell our kids, with our words and our body language, eye contact, smiles, and everything, "I love you, exactly as you are right now."
Drop the conditions, the 'I'll be happy with you when . . . ' and get down to the real truth. The truth is, we really do love them exactly as they are. Worries, busyness, and our own emotional stuff can get in the way of expressing that love, but it's in us. If we let it out and flood them with love and acceptance, imagine how that could change this week. I'm working on it, starting now.
I'm a mom, wife, daughter, friend, and teacher who has long struggled with the desire to be the perfect person I imagine that I should be. Practicing mindfulness helps me find peace with my imperfect journey--being with myself as I truly am, loving my family as they are, and showing up for a messy world with openness and compassion.