I've spent many days thinking, 'no, not this!' when life was inviting me to step up to some opportunity/ challenge. 'No, I don't want my kids to be sick today! I've got a lot to do.'
'No, I can't handle his grouchy mood right now, I'm tired.'
'No, I don't want to deal with this conflict, maybe things will just sort themselves out.'
'No, I don't want to eat something healthy now, I want more cookies.
'No, I don't want to shovel snow today!'
I could go on and on, but you get the idea, right?
I'm working on the 'yes' practice, opening to uncomfortable, hard, and awkward things. Not that I'm going out looking for them, but I'm cultivating the muscle of showing up for them rather than trying to escape them.
When one of my kids was mad at me recently, I was already in the midst of a hard day and just wanted him to stop being mad. I heard myself trying to get out of the conversation, "Can we just talk later? I'm really worn out." Noticing my resistance, I stopped and felt it. I stayed with my body for a bit (while he complained). And I was able to open to what he was saying and feeling.
I want to rise to the occasion rather than lurk in my shadows seeking comfort. To do that, I know that I need to feel my feelings. Get curious about my story. Breath and/or sense my body. Open to what is really happening. And then do what needs to be done.
My life and work are guided by the these core understandings: that all beings (including me!) are capable of transformation and joy, that healthy parenting matters profoundly, and that simple practices can support each of us.