Healing

“The wound is the place where the Light enters you.”    Rumi

“What happens when people open their hearts?”
“They get better.”    Harki Murakami

“Before you can live a part of you has to die. You have to let go of what could have been, how you should have acted and what you wish you would have said differently. You have to accept that you can’t change the past experiences, opinions of others at that moment in time or outcomes from their choices or yours. When you finally recognize that truth then you will understand the true meaning of forgiveness of yourself and others. From this point you will finally be free.”    Shannon L. Alder

“The practice of forgiveness is our most important contribution to the healing of the world.” Marianne Williamson

Healing self is sometimes impossible to do. Years pass by  quickly as we all live our chosen lives. The wounds stay infected and begin covering with more and more scars. It is so hard to state what it is we really want from others and basically we can become disappointed at every turn. Maybe it appears to be weakness on our part. We might need others but we refuse to admit it to ourselves. Likely we have remained strong for so long and dealt with our losses and hurts that we simply can’t change our course and go another route. Continue reading “Healing”

SPANKING

“Tired mothers find that spanking takes less time than reasoning and penetrates sooner to the seat of the memory.”    Will Durant

“Spanking and verbal criticism have become, to many parents, more important tools of child rearing than approval.” Phil Donahue

“Spanking is simply another form of terrorism. It teaches the victims that might makes right, and that problems can be solved through the use of violence by the strong against the weak.”

 “Infliction of pain or discomfort, however minor, is not a desirable method of communicating with children.”     American Medical Association

How and why did the state of Massachusetts hinder the advancement of our human evolution? I truly was shocked to hear of the Massachusetts, Justices decision to promote the guidelines for the use of physical punishment by parents. As a teacher, I am aware that loving a child and displaying kindness works far better. How is there anything LEGAL in guidelines promoting physical punishment by anyone? I suppose it sounds good and appeases parents who choose this form of discipline. Continue reading “SPANKING”

Acknowledgement

“We value virtue but do not discuss it. The honest bookkeeper, the faithful wife, the earnest scholar get little of our attention compared to the embezzler, the tramp, the cheat.”    John Steinbeck

…What makes us who we are should be glorified personified and sung unto the stars!”    Muse

Perhaps we begin with the phrase, “I never wanted nor asked for anything in return.” It is familiar to me. As much as any of us want to pride ourselves with our giving from the heart, without concern of any repay, we still like and enjoy some acknowledgement. Perhaps at times it is not necessary but at a low point in our lives, or moods, we may search for some kind of acknowledgement of who we are and what we have done. Continue reading “Acknowledgement”

Nitpicking

“Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted.”    Ralph Waldo Emerson

“He has a right to criticize, who has a heart to help.”    Abraham Lincoln

 “The motive behind criticism often determines its validity. Those who care criticize where necessary. Those who envy criticize the moment they think that they have found a weak spot.”    Criss Jami

I am not sure how many people use the term nitpicking, but the meaning  seems to be understood by all. I was recently accused of this and I felt horrible to say the least. When it comes from someone you love, it is even worse. Of course my mind was immediately filled with anger and thoughts of  retaliation. Trying to think clearly about just what to say and how far to carry my anger, was perhaps a good thing, as I think back on the incident. The revengeful feelings dissipated quickly and left me full of hurt instead of fury.

Love Hurts

“It is impossible to suffer without making someone pay for it; every complaint already contains revenge.”    Friedrich Nietzsche

“Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.”    Martin Luther King, Jr.

“In taking revenge, a man is but even with his enemy; but in passing it over, he is superior.” Francis Bacon

How many people are aware of the honest fact that love hurts. Instead of saying life is not for the faint of heart, I think we should add that love is also, not for the faint of heart. No matter who the person is or what the relationship is, we will have those moments when they will likely hurt us emotionally. I would like to say we don’t dole out pain on purpose but at times we might just do that. Especially when another person hurts us, our first thought is to get back at this person. It is human nature to defend one’s self and so we retaliate, when we are emotionally in pain. Continue reading “Love Hurts”

Rebellious Mothers-In-Law

Our Rebellious Hearts“What the soul knows is often  unknown to the man who has a soul. We are infinitely more than we think.” Kahlil Gibran

“I realized that all the trouble I ever had about you came from some smallness or fear in myself.”    Mary Haskell

“All cruelty springs from weakness.”    Seneca

“We are expression of earth, and of life – not separate individuals only. We cannot get enough away from the earth to see the earth and ourselves as separates. We move with its great movements and our growth is part of its great growth.”    Kahlil Gibran

“True happiness is to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future, not to amuse ourselves with either hopes or fears but to rest satisfied with what we have, which is sufficient, for he that is so wants nothing. The greatest blessings of mankind are within us and within our reach. A wise man is content with his lot, whatever it may be, without wishing for what he has not.”    Seneca

There has been a tremendous amount of talk about mothers-in-law and daughters-in-law. The fascinating part is that nothing ever changes. I wrote a book on the mother-in-law daughter-in-law dilemma which took  over fifteen years of research. I interviewed people at the beginning of those years and at the end and I got the same results. To be honest, I was shocked.

Today’s young people appear to be more computer literate, independent and outspoken. Yet when you mention a mother-in-law, their complaints and issues sound  the same throughout the ages. They are no less confident around their mothers-in-law than any other generation. Perhaps they are even less secure, given the confusion regarding one insignificant person, who appears to make them nervous. The mystery is they can’t figure out why.

The  typical answers, which have some truth in them, are jealousy, fear, and their own insecurity towards their relationship with their husbands. Their possessive feelings towards their husbands, causes a resistance in them to accept their mother-in-law. Regardless of how any of us feel, mothers are mothers and they will likely always hold a connected bond with their daughters as well as their sons. Most women like to believe that only daughters stay close to their mothers. I call this surface bonds.

Mothers keep their bonds of affection for all of their kids, and young or old the love does not diminish.  The belief is that women stay bonded  to mom, but men somehow evolve into a new creature that stops caring about his beginnings. Many men likely under duress, leave a lot of space between themselves and their mothers, so as to alleviate any trouble with their wives.

Of course it is silly because if we looked into the future, or at life itself, we would realize that we will perhaps one day be at the other end of the stick. None of us think of that. We  assume we will  have our tiny babies, toddlers and young children under our spell forever. As most older women will attest, time passes quietly but swiftly and things turn around. I have heard the same  rhetoric of  “how much better I would do things than my mother-n-law did.” Probably you won’t make the same mistakes, but you will forge ahead with your own errors, unwittingly unaware that you have done anything wrong.

Nobody plans on making problems for anyone least of all your son or daughter-in-law. The trouble is, if one has made trouble already, forgiveness is the only route that allows them on the track again. Of course we can skip the forgiveness, and rattle onward with confusion, distrust, uneasiness, fights, horrible interactions, and free time spent on rehashing everything that was said and done. Humans are great at overlooking their own transgressions. We give ourselves plenty of slack in reference to pain and blame. In the end we all are delivered fair amounts of stress, anxiety and worry.

Mothers-in-law need time to adjust. When a woman becomes a new mother, she frets and wants to be left alone so she can learn all the ways to take care of her baby. She doesn’t want a lot of advice, at least not from the older generation. She gains her independence and eventually steers her own wheel. Likewise, a new mother-in-law must learn how to switch up  her own way of doing things. She no longer can interfere with her sons choices, nor stop by when she feels like it. Yes her son probably wouldn’t care any more than her daughter-in-law worries if her own mother stops by. The trouble is the daughter-in-law wants her privacy, and deserves her privacy. Mothers-in-law need to respect the lines that are drawn.

This is easier said than done. If a mother has freely spoken to her child for over twenty years, it is difficult to expect her to suddenly learn how to keep her mouth quiet. Of course she needs to learn this, but give her some time and space to fall back, make mistakes and then learn to adjust. It is the changes and fear of the transformations that are likely taking place. The love is always solid but the alterations in the relationship are numerous. Changes require a lot of adjustments in action, words and emotional acceptance.

Calling men mommies boys, only makes the men put up a facade of separation from the mother. That in turn hurts the mother. We haven’t changed the son’s love for his mother. We have only caused him to hide his feeling and keep them undercover. That is silly as well as sad, when we don’t place the same parameters on our own heartfelt associations. Just as we can’t be forced to love someone, likewise we can’t be forced to stop loving someone. The heart rebels.

How much time, effort, pain, fear and stress we needlessly place on our shoulders. There is room for one more person to love in this big world. We must have confidence in ourselves, trust in our own worth and not feel jealousy in the mother son relationship. Perhaps if we could get beyond  that, we would all learn to have serenity. Mothers-in-law are just as guilty of jealousy, as well as insecurity. But trusting they have a place in their son’s heart, should give them peace.  Why do we want to spend our happy times, assessing what another says or does. In the end it is futile and pointless. The evaluation results always depend on the person doing the assessment more than what is the truth.

Mothers-in-law have a new playing field. They need to refrain from overstepping boundaries, respect rules that are set, even if they don’t agree with them, or even if they think they are ridiculous. Respect and tolerance is key. Understanding how much your son loves this person is essential. They are his family now, and although you will always be a part  of his family, stepping back a bit and recognizing the importance of his union and the onward cycle of his life is crucial.

Most if not all mothers do not want to keep their sons locked away or stagnant. Allowing them to live the life they choose is not our decision to make, but it does necessitate that  we accept his decisions. Daughters-in-law who want peace, and honesty, must accept some of the fault in a failing relationship with their mothers-in-law. By understanding their role in the crises, they can alter their opinions, as well as stretch their thinking. By coming to realize that they can’t just pretend their husband never had a mother, or that he can easily walk away from having her in his life, will afford a deeper revelation about life itself.

A daughter-in -law’s fear and stress might be her own nervousness at taking the helm. Of course the daughter-in-law is up to it but she must have some faith in herself. None of us can control another, or not forever. If we wrap our treasure and hide it, how can we enjoy it ourselves. Bringing it into the light gives others the chance to experience some of the joy. By having our husband’s interests in mind, we might offer a truce in any difficult situation.

Judging the mother-in-law too early in the game causes misconceptions. It would be like judging a child’s temperament after the mother is leaving the child in your care. The screaming yelling and misbehaving child is under duress at the moment. It is not a good time to be judging him or her. I would suggest the mother-in-law may be at that same point in time, as the toddler.  She is under fire to accept so many changes that are definitely attuned with life and natural, but not easy. Perhaps a mothers slight temper tantrum is also quite natural. Give her time to adjust and make it as easy and as acceptable as possible because in the end she will come to understand, there are no other options.

Mothers-in-law should understand that their daughters-in-law are young, and have a lot to learn about the progression of life. Attempting to give them the fast pass doesn’t work. They are vulnerable, are excited about their new beginning and want independence and freedom, to make their own choices. A mother-in-law has to allow her son and his wife to make mistakes, and learn from those mistakes. Interfering is out of the question. Perhaps their ridiculous idea might pan out better than you thought.Everyone is breaking new ground. We all react poorly at moments. Acting like  children is probably very common in adults of all temperaments. Whether we behave aggressively,  or passive aggressively, everyone needs forgiveness and kindness at times.

We all want to be understood regarding our feelings, which are not easy to express. How many mothers-in-law want to believe they are expressing a temper tantrum, and showing signs of jealousy. How many daughters-in-law want to believe they are possessive and jealous of their mothers-in-law. Both parties will get over the newness of it all, and release their own fears in time. When that future time comes, it would be nice to still have a worthwhile relationship. Trust me, it is an awesome treasure to have and well worth waiting for, or working towards. Tolerance, forgiveness, understanding and love will open the chrysalis to a new adventure that all will love and enjoy, if we will simply have faith that it is possible.

A man can be free without being great, but no man can be great without being free.”     Kahlil Gibran

“Imagination sees the complete reality, – it is where past, present and future meet… Imagination is limited neither to the reality which is apparent – nor to one place. It lives everywhere. It is at a center and feels the vibrations of all the circles within which east and west are virtually included. Imagination is the life of mental freedom. It realizes what everything is in its many aspects … Imagination does not uplift: we don’t want to be uplifted, we want to be more completely aware.”    Kahlil Gibran

“When the hand of Life is heavy and night song-less, it is the time for love and trust. And how light the hand life becomes and how song-ful the night, when one is loving and trusting all.” Anonymous

“He suffers more than necessary, who suffers before it is necessary.”    Seneca

 

The Need To Be Understood

The Need To Be Understood“In the past there were people who were not rich but contented with their living style, laughing and happy all day. But when the new rich people appear, people look at them and ask, ‘why don’t I have a life like that too, a beautiful house, car and garden,’ and they abandon their values.”    Thich Nhat Hanh

“People suffer because they are caught in their views. As soon as we release those views, we are free and we don’t suffer anymore.”    Thich Nhat Hanh

~ “Mindfulness helps you go home to the present. And every time you go there and recognize a condition of happiness that you have, happiness comes.”     Thich Nhat Hanh

Here we go again attempting to explain what we meant by our recent discourse. The person misinterpreted our meaning. I would not doubt for  a second, how many times we are caught in such a situation. We just don’t grasp the implications from our interactions with others. The result is bewildering and hurt feelings. Misunderstandings and long time  rifts of one sort or another are inevitable.

How do we complicate the meaning of what others are trying to say and how do others misinterpret our words and bring doubt and mistrust into the relationship. We grasp what we want in any of our conversations. Our misunderstanding of the  encounter, causes us to  choose a negative review of the incident. We dwell on the tiniest insult while ignoring any praise. We have set ourselves up for failure.

For sure we don’t plan to be downbeat, but we sometimes have an attitude of what a person believes,  before they begin explaining something. In a way we have already selectively decided their points of view, which we usually deduce is contrary to our own.  We argue on cue. It leaves the accused, clarifying their thoughts. Accusations tend to trouble most of us, so to attempt elucidating our reasoning only confuses our accuser and ourselves. When anyone is on the proverbial hot seat, it is difficult to think clearly.

Pondering why so many of us deliberately recall exchanges with others, in such a manner disarray, is confounding. Perhaps some of us enjoy the uncomfortable position we placed another individual. Whatever the causes we likely have experienced both sides of such a situation. There is no winner only wasted time, effort and exacerbated feelings.

Delving more deeply into such occurrences, you find how needy we are for love, attention and to be understood. Perhaps we are angrier at someone’s lack of appreciating, our time and effort for doing something. Probably they don’t quite acknowledge enough empathy, for the situation we find ourselves in. Most likely we have a sense of being misunderstood, or under-appreciated for who we are, or what we do.

Exchanges in disagreements, allow us to continue in a more controversial manner. We are able to add our own agendas, and issues to the mix. Past hurts and unfinished business, sheds even more shadows onto the current dilemma. At best, when the argument has finished, we find how far we have ventured, from the original renditions of opinions. We find it further from the subject, that originated the controversy.

Most definitely we are all influenced by our obstacles in life. We see the world with different glasses, and our deductions are blurred and muddied by our past and present hindrances. We can’t always scream out, “Well it is easy for you to say that because you have more money, more support, a husband that listens, adult kids living close by or whatever else bothers us. Instead we ream the person who antagonized us,  for things they perhaps are not even guilty of. Our pain is hidden, but unresolved, and left to fester. We have the added burden of a broken relationship.

How does one compare lives or problems. Suffice it to say we all have our own challenges to overcome, and our battles to fight. We admit this up front, but then we proceed to lay it all out, and unravel and decipher our grasp of the situation. If we could see this from a child’s perspective, it would be like comparing who has the better toy truck. Does it matter?  It really doesn’t help either of the combatants.

Forgiveness is without a doubt, the most obvious solution to finding peace. The problem is at times, we still withhold it in our hearts. The words are spoken, but not deeply felt. It takes some compassion, and mindfulness to appreciate the depth of the hurt, and the unclear enlightenment attempting to filter into our thoughts and hearts.

Let’s face it, at times we are not always impressed with another person’s issues, because we deem our own to be so much worse. We try so hard to decode and decipher our problems, and it leaves us little time for sympathizing with others. Honestly, when we make time for another, we gain time for ourselves. Somehow the answers to our problems are possibly hidden in the obstacles another faces. It sheds light on our unclear thoughts and questions.

It is so unnerving to be in the position of clarifying, and elucidating our gist and intentions. Especially noteworthy is the perplexing insinuations, we sometimes unconsciously imply with our words. We want acknowledgement, attention, and love. We  want respect, and understanding. Our need to be noticed, is relevant in our desire for worth, for being of value, for receiving love in this whole wide universe.

What we perhaps hear at any given moment, is our own heart’s calling for love. We really are not so different nor separated in our wants and desires. Understanding how similar we are, ensures our ability for mindfulness. If we can get out of our heads, for a little bit, and get into our hearts, we will easily understand the unspoken words. Peace is attained, when we find more answers to the questions  we haven’t yet asked. Reflect in the silence, and discover serenity.

“Breathe in deeply to bring your mind home to your body. Then look at, or think of, the person triggering this emotion: With mindfulness, you can see that she is unhappy, that she is suffering. You can see her wrong perceptions. You can see that she is not beautiful when she says things that are unkind.”    Thich Nhat Hanh

Let us fill our hearts with our own compassion – towards ourselves and towards all living beings.    Thich Nhat Hanh

“To be loved means to be recognized as existing.”    Thich Nhat Hanh

“We are all the leaves of one tree; we are all the waves of one sea; the time has come for all to live as one.”    Thich Nhat Hanh

Just Be Yourself

“Say NO to the demands of the world. Say YES to the longings of your own heart.”   Jonathon Lockwood

“Your work is not to drag the world kicking and screaming into a new awareness. Your job is to simply do your work…Sacredly, Secretly, and Silently…And those with ‘eyes to see and ears to hear’ will respond.”    Unknown

Continually attempting to please others, is likely the most difficult job we all work at constantly. All our boasts about  not caring if someone likes it or not, are just nonsense. Deep down we want to make others happy. All of us work at making the grade, and becoming number one, in the eyes of another. What I have found is that it becomes impossible, to be the number one for any length of time. As hard as we work at it, eventually it wears us down, and I am not even sure others are totally aware of the game we are playing. They are too busy playing their version of it.

Most likely it begins at childhood, when we compete against our siblings for attention. Some of us find it easier to be people pleaders, but we all do it to some degree, even if we don’t admit to it. If our parents like something special for dinner, then that is what we cook when they are coming over. We bask in our ability to please them, and we beam, when they compliment us. Of course we get a bit  rigid when we hear about their  pleasure at another siblings house. How petty of us we think, but the feelings creep in, or is it the threat of losing love.

Young kids depend on mom and dad, and so the ability to accept sibling rivals, is important. Maybe we never evolve out of that position. Instinctively we continue to strive to please.  This perhaps continues with our jobs and the boss. Technically the boss is also a provider for us, and important figure in our lives. Husbands and wives play another role, and without knowing it,  demand more of our attention.

We all like to satisfy, receive praise, and feel that we make a difference in the lives of others. I know it is probably impossible to be in first place, all the time. It is extremely difficult, to  maintain a level of denial, in order to cope with the pleasures of others. Simply stated, we can’t be the perfect child forever. Finding our own lives is relevant. We can’t be the need fulfilling spouse every second. Our own needs must be taken care of. We are never the perfect parent, sibling or friend. Those times when we fail, are the times we beat ourselves up, for not satisfying another.

Perhaps it is time to ask if it is so important to always gratify. Likely we have degrees of how much importance we place on this attitude. It is paramount to accept the fact, that we cannot always placate those we love. If we only see ourselves through the eyes of another, then we lose ourselves in their perception of us. How they view us is how we rate ourselves. Now we are under pressure to come through. It is far better to appreciate  who we are. Our version of self, is the most important measurement we can accept.

Most of us probably are not aware of the importance, another person places, on what we think about them. As much as we attempt to keep parents happy, our children are doing the same thing with us. Every time we produce a guilt ridden situation,  we have endorsed a “striving to please” job. It only leaves us distraught at our attempts to gratify. Perhaps parents are not placing such burdens on us. It may possibly be us, who desire to constantly gratify those we love.

I honestly believe that in the end, we are so beat down that we give up. This is sad, but sometimes a blessing. After coming to terms with the limits of our capacity, we begin to discover ourselves. We also realize that we start doing things for others out of love, real love, rather than to attain a false belief of love. Most likely parents are not forcing kids to please, and may not be aware of the power they hold over their children. Adult children might become aware, that their parents are also not theirs to control. Kids need to learn independence, and thankfulness for the favors parents bestow.

Once this is accomplished, we can live our lives in honesty, and in a more relaxed state. We stop striving to constantly delight, and begin paying more attention to needs and support. It perhaps also gives us time to aid others, outside our circle of family and friends. If we dwell constantly on what we must do for someone, in order to maintain a tenuous sense of position, it allots  little time, to helping another, out of charity.

I know there were many times in my life, that I did things out of duty. There was some love intertwined, but for the most part, it felt more like being compelled to do it. Maybe it was my own sense of duty, or maybe it was guilt put on my shoulders. Likely it was a bit of both. I guess it is a good thing when a person comes to the realization sooner, rather than later, because pressure is relieved and living begins.

We strive to be the perfect parents, or grandparents. Then we discover how effortlessly, another parent or  grandparent assists our child in a profound and important way. Accepting this is crucial, to our own peace of mind. We all want what is best for our kids and grandchildren. If we love them truly, then there is no problem in accepting and being grateful, for the support of others. Loving can mean allowing our most treasured gifts, the freedom to be liberated. Letting go is difficult, but upon release,  peace is acquired. We also might find the loved one returns often. There is a comforting revisit, due to the lessening of restrictions.

The more we hold on tightly to what we perceive as ours, the more they struggle for autonomy,  and to please us. We leave them in turmoil. The expectations others have for us, as well as the ones we place on others, can consume our lives. It is so strange to have the independence, and knowledge of the love of others, without strings attached. Love is so gentle, that it is without physical attributes, and thus can only be felt within the body and mind. It is impossible to enclose, or keep love confined to oneself. By allowing love the freedom to expand, it draws back to us and gives thanks.

Even at work, there can be many who deserve credit for their abilities. We are one of many on the job. In no way are we depleted by someone’s fullness. Mothers and wives can love sons and husbands, without jealousy. Sisters-in-Law and brothers-in-law can love each other without competing. Siblings can understand that their parents love can be divided many times without any loss of love to them. Friends can accept the differences between each other, and the needs each individual fulfills. Grandparents can give unconditional love, without envy. I for one comprehend that letting go of demands, and competition, brings serenity. The empty space left from the lack of worry, is filled with more love. Serenity is far better than constant striving to please others. Life won’t always make you happy, but living a meaningful life will bring you happiness.

Strive For Happiness“PEACE It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. It means to be in the midst of those things, and still be calm in your heart.” Unknown

“When we seek to discover the best in others, we somehow  bring out the best in ourselves.”    William Arthur Ward

“We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude.”     Cynthia Oziek

 

Rejection Is Complicated

Rejection is Complicated“Most fears of rejection rest on the desire for approval from other people. Don’t base your self-esteem on their opinions.”    Harvey Mackay

“The ultimate authority must always rest with the individual’s own reason and critical analysis.” Dalai Lama

“All religions try to benefit people, with the same basic message of the need for love and compassion, for justice and honesty, for contentment.”    Dalai Lama

“Logically, harmony must come from the heart… Harmony very much based on trust. As soon as use force, creates fear. Fear and trust cannot go together.”    Dalai Lama

When we think about rejection, we recall friendships and boyfriends and girlfriends. Upon our loss of any kind, we review what we did and said and how others interacted with us. Many times we are left with feelings of guilt, remorse and we become determined to refrain from repeating what we perceive as the mistakes. How guilty we make ourselves believe. Even when others hurt us we somehow manage to turn it around and blame ourselves for the agonizing results.

Understanding the reasons for being rejected by anybody for any reasons is paramount to comprehending the complications of such situations. As early as childhood we face rejection from parents. Of course most parents love their kids but forms of discipline, and pain endured by parents who are attempting to avoid their own hurts get in the way of clear thinking. The result is rejection for minutes hours or days.

Children tend to be quick at rebounds and impulsive in their retorts and actions. It likely gets just about all of them in trouble with one parent or another. I suppose it takes tremendous thought on the parents part to understand the behind the scene reasons for such outbursts. A child who actually may want a parents’ love may forcefully reject the parent. Perhaps it gives the child control and probably the child wants to feel the parents love swiftly capturing him or her and sweeping them into their loving arms.

Of course a tired, weary stress ridden parent is unaware of the child’s hidden agenda and may carelessly misunderstand the behavior and resort to punishments and crying. Likely we have all been there. Viewing the situation from outside the circle allows one to notice that as upset as the parent is, the  child is more deeply affected. In this case one would say, the parent never meant to reject the child. The messages were not clear. The child might think, mom or  dad doesn’t love me, or I must do and behave in certain ways in order to keep their love. Love becomes conditional. Kids will accept the terms because love is so important to them and rejection is so horrible.

Parents likely assume the punishment worked but at times it has simply kept peace and control but perhaps not remedied the situation. Discussion brings understanding and enlightenment to a situation. The problem with discourse is sometimes we don’t have the time or the energy left after such an upsetting ordeal. Recognizing the signs of distress in kids helps to alleviate pain before it mounts. Realizing our own need for downtime and relief is also vital if we want to help ourselves in order to support our kids.

Dismissal from friends perhaps is the result of jealousy and envy. If one worries about weight, yet their friend is thin, it certainly can result in a crisis situation. Whenever we feel less of a person, in order to soothe ourselves we attempt to drag another down. We just can’t fathom our own worth. Making a friend believe they are not so great kind of keeps them under control. We don’t think about their hidden insecurities. At the moment we are concerned with our own.

Boyfriends who are jealous attempt to keep all other suitors away. In this way they confine their prize in order to keep it secure. None of us stop to think that such a manner of acting doesn’t work. At some future time perhaps our spouse will wander or attempt to leave. When the ensuing rage starts,  the results are seen in fights and sometimes death of one spouse at the hands of another. If we could sense or grasp the pain we all feel from rejection, we might figure out the power and deep pain we share deep inside. When we have love we fear losing love. Without love we search for any kind. Love does make the world go around.

Friendships thrive on sameness, compatibility and sharing of similar tasks and likes. New arrivals are not always welcome because it changes the mixtures’ texture. New friends who are added can rearrange things, cause stress and havoc and bring about jealousy and vulnerability. We might deny this or choose to ignore it but perhaps we do ignore our sensitivities too much. By accepting them and grasping them, we might lighten the anxiety.

Some people have a need to flirt with others when out with their significant other. Likely it is their insecurity that brings about the flirting. They need to feel wanted and desired by many so that they are built up enough to believe they would never lose the one they are with. After all they think, I am desired by others. I wonder sometimes at how much love we are lacking in our lives. If we love ourselves we can find love in our world. Real love is not mean, or unkind. It doesn’t hurt, cause  pain or brag. It isn’t boastful nor demanding. Love is gentle enduring and unconditional. It is free and returns of its’ own free will. It is never contained or hidden.

Siblings resent each other at times and perhaps by noticing the competition that started from childhood,  we can understand why sibling jealousy is prevalent. Siblings might have discovered at an early age that they are vying for their parents approval and acceptance as well as their love. Parental love might come at the price of a rejected sibling. The love lost between siblings is sad. So many devote their lives to avoiding each other or resenting the company of each other. The reality is they miss what they yearn for. they would cherish the love from each other but don’t know how to go about rekindling it and rediscovering the love they felt and had.

Perhaps the rejections are not always real. Kids push parents away when they want them the most. Parents walk away from kids when they are so hurt yet they love their kids so much. Parent and child are wounded. Spouses hurt each other with mistrust and doubt. As much as they want each other to make the first move and reach across the table with a loving hand, they become immobilized in their fear of rejection. In a sense we label the weaker person as the one who needs and wants the love. We will pretend we don’t care or need the love rather than admit our desire for it.

The significance of love and what love means is genuinely beyond words. Even animals choose love over food and warmth.  Humans have a necessity for love and we all hate to admit that need. All of us are connected by the universal truth of love making the world go around. We are so good at rejecting each other. We desire to be needed more than to need. Our requirements are basically  the same so there is no shame when the object of our affection hurts us with their rejection.

Guilt never works. It is negative and brings us down further than we already are. Guilt will separate us rather than bring us together. Let go of the guilt.  Choose to absolve yourself of guilt feelings. Punishing yourself doesn’t solve the problem. We might think in terms of deserving the pain that guilt  brings. We don’t. So let it go and trust yourself to move to higher ground with a better attitude. It is about improving not about guilt. We want our kids to do better and not be dragged down. We want to do better  so we shouldn’t spiral downward. Mistakes are not made to be reviewed continually. They are lessons learned. Forward movement is part of growth.

Perhaps when we can admit how wonderful and beautiful love is we will come to deal with each other in a more loving manner. It isn’t about power, control or chaining our loves. It is about understanding, acceptance, freedom, compassion kindness empathy tolerance and especially living, laughing and loving. We, after all, are more spiritual than human. Trust your loving intuition. While your mind is calmly reasoning, allow your heart to open the door to more loving responses. We all hate rejection of any kind. Discover and learn from mistakes. treat them as stepping stones to a better you.

“We can reject everything else: religion, ideology, all received
wisdom. But we cannot escape the necessity of love and compassion….
This, then, is my true religion, my simple faith. In this sense, there is no need
for temple or church, for mosque or synagogue, no need for complicated
philosophy, doctrine or dogma. Our own heart, our own mind, is the temple.
The doctrine is compassion. Love for others and respect for their rights and
dignity, no matter who or what they are: ultimately these are all we need.
So long as we practice these in our daily lives, then no matter if we are
learned or unlearned, whether we believe in Buddha or God, or follow some
other religion or none at all, as long as we have compassion for others and
conduct ourselves with restraint out of a sense of responsibility, there is
no doubt we will be happy.”― Dalai Lama XIV

FINDING TRUTH

What We Do Know“When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, “I used everything you gave me.” ~Erma Bombeck

“Each man must look to himself to teach him the meaning of life. It is not something discovered: it is something molded.”    Antoine de Saint-Exupery

“A great secret of success is to go through life as a man who never gets used up.”    Albert Schweitzer

I’m sure we have all heard the phrase, ‘What you don’t know won’t hurt you.’ Of course there are many ways to look at that. If we don’t know we are ill then it might hurt us. We could debate this for hours, but I believe that what we haven’t stopped to consider, will affect us in profound ways.

We are not far removed from the squirrels, birds  and other animals we study as they search for  food, mates, homes and security. I laugh at  the birds visiting my feeder, as they fight to gain access to the food. One morning I remember saying out loud, “There is enough food why are they fighting instead of waiting?” Of course at that moment, I realized they were behaving  just the same as people.

From the time we are born, our parents strive to get us into the best schools they can afford. The search begins to enhance our chances, and our lives. We don’t question what does enhancement mean. We are told the  bigger house, fancier car and multiple material  gains are equivalent to success. Not having any other options or opinions available, we carry the myth forward, and work hard to gain more of everything. Few  of us stop  to consider why. Perhaps the questioning might lead us to question, what we don’t know and are not told.

When I was first married, I had the tiniest place, but I was thrilled with it and with my life. I planted about two flowers, in the smallest area anyone  could own. The place was rented, but the simple gadgets we bought, were our own. It was home. As the years passed, we needed more room for the expanding family. We searched for a new place to live. That is when reality set in. It became paramount, according to the rules of society, to buy in the best town we could afford. Upon seeing the houses, it was clear that the more we were able to spend,  the greater the quality of the house, and the more features it had. This seems like a simple economic lesson, yet to me, it felt like I was joining the human race and I mean race.

We bought  a  home, still live in it and happily raised our kids. I can recall numerous people bemoaning their stepping stone homes. Their dissatisfaction  with their current place was obvious. It appeared so sad to me. How did they get up in the  morning with a smile of contentment. Of course they didn’t. They were living in a fictional future world. They wanted certain items that they didn’t yet have and their whole energy was focused on the acquisition of such items. They were unhappy people. The end to the story is the marriage ended in a divorce, before the future house was bought.

I began to understand the race, when my child did not get accepted in the preschool of choice. I apparently did not apply soon enough. The place I sent him to was wonderful and I was blessed that  he went to it. The struggles of maintaining the correct teachers, and staying abreast to make sure my kids were not overlooked, took a toll. People infringed on others sons and daughters. At long last I gave  up the control, and went with the flow. I decided that everything was in God’s  hands, and whatever happened was for the best. That was a liberating day. I continued to monitor my kids, and their work, but left the micromanagement to others.

I was not accepted into the  top social circles in my area. I didn’t care, because with four kids I was too busy to care. I had to make an extra effort to find things out on my own, but somehow it always was okay. One of the teachers, considered to be horrible, unbeknownst to me, became one of my  son’s best teachers. He still remembers her name.

Perhaps what I  didn’t know hurt me, in the area of associating with people, who were considered the ruling group in town. My kids were also, not on the guest lists of the favored ruling school group. That is a truth, and people don’t like to hear it, but there has always been a division of players. We all know it, and know our place. Nobody tells you, it just happens.

My life raising kids was awesome. I spent time with my kids, and enjoyed being with them. I didn’t need others to confirm, what I thought was right or wrong. It was a long road, but I eventually trusted myself. We  instilled virtues and values uncommonly mentioned. Taking myself out of the race, meant a certain amount of exclusion and missed celebrations. It also meant no pressure to be and act in ways I didn’t want.

If we had never seen another way of living, or viewed the  material gains of others, we might never have even thought of their existence. When we are all bombarded with so many things we might purchase, it can leave us envious of others and without contentment. If we are constantly looking for more, to satisfy  some uncontrolled desire, then we never notice what is in front of us, that is very cherished. In that case what we do know  hurts us. We tend to be influenced by others. This leads us into devaluing, what we have within reach.

Some of us get caught up in the tidal wave of living unconsciously. Others encourage us,  prod us, or flaunt in front of us. The resistance is hard. It requires some soul searching, to discover what is real, about us and our lives. When we cut the puppet strings from our lives, we learn to treasure the intangible possessions, that we cherish the most. Living is not aimlessly receiving more and more. Living is nurturing, loving, caring, respecting, displaying kindness, virtue, morality and spiritual  growth. We have the choice to get off of the wheel, or keep running towards what we don’t know, that will hurt us in the end.

“Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.”    Albert Schweitzer

“The highest proof of the spirit is love. Love the eternal thing which can already on earth possess as it really is.”    Albert Schweitzer

“Life becomes harder for us when we live for others, but it also becomes richer and happier.” Albert Schweitzer

“Happiness is the art of making a bouquet of those flowers within reach.”    Anonymous

“Don’t  ask if you are happy, ask yourself if your life has meaning.”    Anonymous