My Child, the Mirror

Photo by Nadine Wuchenauer on

Yesterday I started with a quote about the journey being about me and becoming my own savior.  In the universe’s divine way, that was put into action today.  Bear with me, this is messy but has a point.  I recognize I have a ton of healing around my anxiety and perfectionist tendencies.  With that being said, I believe that we are given lessons until we are able to learn what is meant for us. I also believe that many of those lessons come from our children. 

Too often I acknowledge my anxiety, my frustration, and my perfectionism with a flippant, “Yeah, I know it’s me being a perfectionist but I can’t help it yet.”  Given the tone of yesterday’s opening quote, it is more prevalent to me now that I need to truly do the healing if I am ever going to feel the benefits or see the rewards of that kind of growth.  Yesterday, I made the decision to firmly and completely address this so I can jump off of the dysfunctional roller coaster I’ve created; I no longer want to tip toe into the well of healing—I need to dive in head first.  To be clear, this decision was made 24 to 30 hours ago.

Over the past few months I’ve witnessed so many of my tendencies in my son.  Everything from the anxiety to the perfectionism.  He’s only three and the older he gets, the clearer this message is to me.  While we played a game tonight, he completely flipped out because he couldn’t move the pieces how he wanted to.  He started hitting himself and throwing a tantrum but he refused to stop the game.  Every time I told him how smart he is he told me, “No I’m not!” and then he would start all over again.  He even said, “I’m afraid to lose!” and I could see the frustration in his eyes. 

I remember doing the exact same thing at four years old trying to learn how to tie my shoes.  My heart nearly stopped as I saw this beautiful little boy repeating the exact same things I used to do as a child.  I couldn’t help but see myself.  In that moment pure instinct took over and I grabbed my child and hugged him as hard as I could.  I told him over and over again how smart he is and how much I love him and I asked him what he needed.  He couldn’t tell me.

The first thing I did was make him do some deep breathing.  Then I remembered some of my LMT training and I did some simple techniques to help him calm down and feel his body.  I sat with him and started asking him questions to bring his focus back to the moment (where are your arms? Where is your tummy?  Where is your brain?).  Finally I made him start thanking his brain for everything it does.  I told him over and over again that winning isn’t the goal. When that was done, I asked him how he felt and he said, “A little better.”

The universe in its wisdom holds up mirrors in those closest to us so we can see what we need.  I could have used all of these things as a child.  My parents were always very loving with me, but they attached a lot of value to success.  They never deprived me of anything, but success is what really got the attention.  With that being said they didn’t know how to talk an introverted perfectionist out of her own head.  I’m striving to do that with my child.  I’m so grateful I had the opportunity to start healing that wound tonight.  Yes, in the moment it was completely about my son and not wanting him to feel that kind of frustration, but it was also very much about my need to stop associating my worth with success.  To know that I too can let go and connect with the moment, with my body, and know what is right for me.  If you’re ever looking for the source of some needed healing, look at the mirrors you’ve brought into your life—the answers we need are often right in front of our faces. 

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