Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Introducing...Dr. Shefali

Note: The video is smack dab in the middle of Dr. Shefali's nuggets.  You are smart people and can read around it.  This is me accepting my imperfection and I can't get the video to move without a lot of time and effort.

I watched Dr. Shefali Tsabary last night on OWN's Lifeclass.    As she started talking, I was astounded and amazed.   What she was talking about takes my journey of consciousness to another level and THE most important one as a parent.  If you read this blog ever, my mode of operating is to evolve my thinking and new ahas rock my world.  This has to do with my children and their role in my spiritual development.  Dr. Shefali says that our children are hear to evolve us.  I have learned that any body that pushes my buttons can teach me something about myself.  It's not just that they are a pissy person.  They can push me further down my path towards enlightenment.

Here are some of Dr. Shefali's nuggets:

We rarely ever parent from the present, we rarely ever not parent in fear.

The ego is so seductive.  It believes there is only one way to affirm the self.  But it is a fear based way.

Get yourself out of the way of your children and allow them to EMERGE.

How can we tell our children that their best wasn't good enough?  How would you feel if someone you loved told you that? 

These children are so full of expansive spirit and we try to reduce them to one thing: a grade, a sport, etc.

We come from a place of wanting our children to be empowered and complete as possible.  But then we project our fears onto them.

I know who I am - Listen to your child. Don't try to mold them into someone else.

This one I'm not sure if it is from Oprah or Dr. Shefali.  These questions are the ones that I am learning to ask myself when I engage with my children. This is what is on their minds: 

Do you see me? 

Do you hear me?  

Do I matter?

Dwarf Hamsters And Unconditional Love

Oh my goodness, I just witnessed in dwarf hamster land what goes on in my world on a daily basis.  I got up while it was still dark outside and went to the keeping room to read and have quiet time.  I could hear a repetitive metal banging that indicated the hamsters had no water.  "Give me water!!"  I refilled the water bottle and attached it back and watched to see if it was working.  One of the two started pushing the metal and it wasn't as loud as before so it must have been working. Then I watched tiny hamster #2 come up to the trough as well. The first one made a tiny squeak that said "Get out of here, I'm not finished" to the other and then body slammed her to get her out the way.

As a mother of two tween siblings who seem to antagonize each other daily, I lost it and started laughing madly in the predawn hour.

Oh my gosh.  These tiny animals are the same as humans.  We all want a little bit of water, a little bit of love. If we don't get our needs met, we will push others in physical and verbal ways.  This has become so evident to me.  We had an incident a few weekends ago whereby I learned just what it can be like as a Middle School girl in a drama filled wasteland.

Not pretty.

I saw this video on Upworthy yesterday.  It says it all.  It's a simple message but one that is so hard to abide by.  When someone hurts myself or one of my family, the natural instinct  I have is NOT to love.  It is anger, and to think what did I do to this person for them to treat me this way? And over time, I have learned this isn't about me, it's about what is going on with the other person.

But what is more Godly than to give love back?   And as Jason Mraz says in the video, it will stop the aggressor in their tracks.

I really, really understand the noble idea of returning hate with love.  Learning how to do it in real time though, is the ultimate challenge for me.  It takes practice.  I practice it with my kids most every day.  They don't send me hate but they react and tell me everything is my fault, and I don't love them when something doesn't go their way (or their love tank is empty....)  As my stomach turns, I take a deep breath and in the moment try to figure out how to give them love and not react in defensiveness.  I have been practicing this with each interaction in earnest  for the last weeks after watching Dr. Shefali and her ideas of conscious parenting.  It can push every one of my buttons when someone reacts in what I discern as "against me."  Sometimes, I just become silent and know at least I am not yelling back.  Some days, I have been magnificent and listened to all of the emotion that the child needs to express and doesn't know how to handle and am just there, present.   I am there soft place to fall.  Sometimes, when I tune in and show sympathy, the emotion from the other person gets louder and more intense because they feel safe and have to let it all out and eventually it dissipates. And it is magical when the anger falls away.  Simply magical.

Not every day, do I have the where with all to do this or does it work out magically, sometimes boundaries have to be put in.  Some days, I'm physically or emotionally drained and I don't have it to give.  I have learned to tell the child I'm approaching my yelling point, so I'm going to walk away and calm down.  And after some time, I'm able to come back and engage.

It's a work in progress and it takes practice, so very much practice.  And luckily, there are opportunities nearly every single day (or at least the last two weeks there have been)!

The hamsters are just going to have to work it out amongst themselves.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

I HEART The Mindy Project

I have a new TV obsession.  It's the Mindy Project.  Not sure how it happened but I'm so glad it did.

Dr. Danny and Dr. Mindy

The show is just slaying me right now.  And the interesting thing is that I started watching it in the middle of last season which was their second season and my appreciation didn't kick in until now.  I think I know why, but more on that later.

I found the first season at the library and had a marathon session over a several day period and just fell in love, head over heels in love. Dr. Mindy Lahari is an OB-GYN in NYC and the show is set at her practice with a collection of oddballs.  Really well defined odd ball characters that add immensely to the mix. She also happens to be of Indian descent and not a size 2.  As you know this is not the norm for a main female character in a sitcom.  There are blogs devoted to her character's fashion choices.  All very inspiring as I am not a size 2 either.
The Mindy Project is so well written and fast paced that I have to rewind it to catch the jokes. There was a bit where the character Morgan, the male nurse, high on a marijuana cupcake does a dive into what he thinks is the pool, and hits the ground with a thud.  I had to pause the show and just laugh.  A fantastically hard belly laugh.  I think the reason I never caught on to how good it was because of distraction.  I find myself watching a tv show, even one that I enjoy immensely while I'm on the internet - AT THE SAME TIME.

I wasn't paying attention.

That says something about my obsession with web surfing, being able to relax and I'm taking note.

Focus on one thing at a time.

When I don't focus on one thing at at time, stay in the present moment, I miss things.  I have found that when I'm really tired, I don't know how to disconnect.  My mind races and I go from website to website filling my head with trivial information.  When what I need to do is just sit still, rest the brain and decompress.

What really appeals to me about Dr. Lahari's character is that she owns herself, unapologetically.  She is who she is.  She doesn't fret, she just plows forward even if it is misguided.

And the show is hilarious.

Freaking hilarious.

I'm also obsessed with Dr. Danny too!  Or shall I say Diamond Dan.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The Mindy Project

I have fallen in love with "The Mindy Project"  I will explain why later. Just watch and enjoy.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

My Name is Carolyn and I'm a Knowledge Clutterer

I took a quiz after watching my favorite cleaning guru, Peter Walsh on Rachel Ray.  And this was my result below.   Ha ha!!  Not surprising at all.  I have gotten really good at decluttering but the area I have the most trouble with is…
I have many, many books, and I do have binders and notebooks from college.  I have ripped the band aid off and recycled magazines.  I learned to let them go.  I knew the article that I hadn't read would come around again.  
My desk in the kitchen area is my most shameful spot.  I can't manage the paper flow in my household.  I have often wondered why is it so hard to let go of the box of paper underneath the desk.  I so want to have a clear vision and this is BLOCKING me.  Well, it's my soft spot.  I may just have to accept this is who I am.  
But I don't want to.
More work to be done.

You’re a Knowledge Clutterer

Stockpiles every book she has ever read or hopes to read and or every issue of Architectural Digest ever published – believing that if she owns the book, she’ll inherit the knowledge; has a full anthology of their college textbooks and binders and keeps them to remember the glory days. Mail has been left in stacks to look at “later”.
Classic Knowledge Clutters: 
Book club members; enthusiasts of coffee-table books; and post-college grads with an English major.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Sparks of Divinity

I caught a blip of a rerun of Super Soul Sunday while walking the dogs, thanks to Sirius radio app on my iPhone.   The little bit I heard just ignited my enthusiasm once again and I want to carve the time out to watch the ones I have taped on my DVR.  I always have ahas and then it sparks me to write.  These are creative forces flowing from a higher power that resides inside me whom I call God.

The person I heard speaking on OWN was Adyashanti, an American spiritual teacher.  I heard him describe humans as sparks of divinity.

Sparks of Divinity!

Wow!  This terminology is a massive warm enveloping hug just when I needed it most.

This is so different than how I pictured myself when I was growing up. 

The way I thought of God before was bleak, and unforgiving and most of all - Judgmental.  I cannot tolerate anything that smells of judgment anymore.  What had been planted in my head was that Jesus loved me, but I was a sinner.  And there was a big book and God was watching and if I misbehaved my name would not be in that book and I was going to hell.  (Yes, I sadly watched a full out play production of this very notion called "Heaven or Hell" in my early 20's) And I was told I was a sinner all the time.   And so there was hell, and armageddon, and eye for an eye and so much was based on Fear.  I can clearly see how fear is used repeatedly as a means to an end.   This did not present to me a God of Love.  A God who loved me more than I could even imagine and that there was an endless depth of love to tap into.   All I could think was that I wasn't good enough.  (If you tell someone they are a sinner, then guess what, that is what they will morph into.  Self-fulfilling prophecy.

So guess what, I didn't learn how to love myself or anyone else unconditionally -which is a red letter New Testament Jesus' commandment.  In fact it is the second one to loving God with all your heart, all your soul and all your mind.  The second commandment of the New Testament is "You shall love your neighbor as you love yourself."   I now know that I was born to LOVE (not fear). 

I'm rearranging those thoughts in my head because our higher being (and Jesus) are all about love.  We are born and our souls ARE love but we lose that along the way.  Our ego gets in the way. Our conditioning by humans gets in the way.

The way to follow Jesus as he teaches is through LOVE.   Becoming whole-hearted.  Seeing the world as loving.  There is an abundance of love out there for everyone.