My dear friend and fellow light bringer shared something profound with me this morning “We get too tangled up expecting approval or validation from others but we have the power to push ourselves.” It’s like she was walking with Give Thanks and I this morning. My daughter was asking me if I thought she looked cute. She often asks me and typically my response is “Have you looked in the mirror? Did you check yourself out? Do you like how you look?” Her answers are usually yes and my follow up is “That’s the thing that matters.” Now don’t get it twisted, I tell her she’s smart and cute and has great fashion sense often BUT I don’t want her to feel like she needs my approval and validation. This lesson needs to be learned now at this age because this is where we learn how to be resilient, independent and have mental fortitude that can save you from a lifetime of being subject to other people’s opinions.
The child I am raising is the child in me that I talk to the way that I needed to be spoken to. I want her to have compassion, be kind and be empathetic but I also want her to have confidence in herself, her choices and feel pride in the way she carries herself. We speak everyday about things that she has questions about and the things that I observe and give her feedback about. I feel that it is my duty to instill a realistic view of the world and remind her to gather strength, power and happiness from the inside of her soul. I want her to seek the approval of her soul, her spirit and her own mind so that she cannot be swayed by the outside world. I’m aware that she will tested and things will mess with her but I’m arming her with tools so she can fight those wars. Spencer Reid on Criminal Minds was telling the blonde chick…his bff and I can’t think of her name right now, anyway he was telling her that most of the fairy tales we know now started out as horror stories. The stories were meant to have children face their fears even if it traumatized them a little bit.
You’ll be aight is something my kid hears from me often. I tend to follow it up with a well being check and questions to gather more intel on how she’s feeling and ways to process those feeling in a healthy way. I’m here for guidance but I cannot live for her. I’ve seen how a life of too much coddling can backfire and how not enough support can be equally as damaging. I think the balance is about standing back and have her struggle through her battles but being nearby to offer assistance when things get a bit too crazy. I can offer my child many gifts but to me the greatest one is self reliance, self assurance and self love. She will learn that by tapping into her instincts, trusting her gut and pushing through circumstances that seem hard as hell. The only way out is through. THE ONLY WAY OUT IS THROUGH. Pushing through a situation that seems impossible is a victory that no one can take from her. Pushing through mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually trying situations is something that you earn, it belongs to you and once you have lived it, then it is time to level up. I believe in grit, in knuckling up when shit has you pressed and I believe once again that the only way out is through.
When your mind is free nothing can contain you. When the world is your stage, and everyone is a supporting actor in your narrative wouldn’t you write a story where you are victorious no matter what? Isn’t it critical for our lives to have stories where something or someone tried really hard to break us but we made it through? Given the things I have seen, the situations I’ve lived and the amount of mental armor it’s taken to get me here, I can’t know what I know and allow my kid to think anything different. I will teach her to rise to the occasion and everything she seeks can be hers with determination and strength. We may lose at times and losing is just a lesson we need to learn for next time. However no matter what anyone else thinks, I need her to think that she is whole, complete and capable as she is and as she isn’t. She is her greatest fan, her greatest enemy and there is no one else. I’ll be her coach but she will have the skills that I share with her. She is the star. Period.