In 3rd grade I had this hat. It was covered with pins (Cyndi Lauper and Ben & Jerry's pins rocked!).
I wore it with my plastic globe earrings and my yellow dinosaur-print pants.
Let's say I was a bit of rebel.
The other kid's called me "weird." But I had to be unconventional self.
I think that to practice mindfulness you have to be a bit unconventional.
To parent peacefully, to simplify, to say "no" to a more stuff, more distraction life -- you have to be okay with going against the grain.
You may or may not see yourself as a rebel.
Perhaps now you are a suburban mom, like I am. We're raising our kids and seeing how we are "mom" now -- like all the moms you knew when you were a kid.
Maybe you realize (like I do now) that you've become a pretty normal adult.
But part of you wants more.
Part of you rebels against the "mom" picture that our culture paints of you. You don't like the box that our consumer culture wants to put kids and moms into.
Come on, you know what I'm talking about... the "mom-who-drinks-wine-and-rolls-her-eyes-at-her-daughter's-sass" version of mom.
The advertiser's image of "THE Suburban Mom" -- so buy this outfit and don't go deeper.
Part of you yearns for more.
You want a deeper connection with your children (these amazing beings who came through your body).
You want a deeper connection and depth in this miraculous, brief life.
To acknowledge that yearning is a daring act. It opens us up to vulnerability, to hurt.
AND that yearning opens us up to the greatest love and connections possible in this life.
When we practice mindfulness, we open ourselves up to feeling more.
How? It's basically training ourselves in paying attention (in a friendly way). Over time, we see more clearly, appreciate more and feel more of our feelings.
Consumption culture promotes just the opposite: numbing.
Buy, eat, drink, watch so that you don't feel the intensity of life.
To open ourselves up to feeling more is to living more deeply. (Happily, mindfulness practice gives us the equanimity we need to lean into the intensity of life.)
Living deeply and honoring our children as whole and complete human beings -- these are rebellious acts.
Join me in unplugging from the matrix. Practice to be really there for the pain and the joy of this precious and beautiful life.
Practice to be really there for the pain and the joy of this precious and beautiful life. Make parenting a deeper journey.