Posts Tagged ‘children’

How Do You Handle A Bully?

December 31, 2014

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I wonder about the history of bullying. I imagine that in prehistoric days, being a bully was the way to be the boss in the cave. Totally up for info on that, but it seems possible.
Then came the days of the quick fix, when we had communities and villages, and the bully was finally pummeled by someone, thereby putting an end to the bullying, at least from that person.
Then came conscious communication, and the turnaround transition where the bullies were loved by those who could see the suffering underneath, and recognize their own internal bully, and quite possibly heal the dynamic of bullying altogether.
My dear friend, Judy Giovangelo has devoted her life to healing bullies, inside and out with her magnificent organization Ben Speaks, and so she keeps me awake and aware about this bullying topic.

There is, however, another fascinating slant on bullying that is more esoteric and takes an enormous dose of patience, and that I’ve practiced my whole life. It’s totally an inside job, while watching karmic patterns play out.

I’ve experienced and witnessed treatment from some people that shocked me and felt awful, but with prayer, meditation, and learning to love myself more, I’ve been silent, like an owl. Watching over years sometimes, just seeing the internal suffering of the bully, sending love, and also doing what I needed to do to take care of myself, I haven’t been one to take an activist stance and fight back, unless my family or myself were in danger. I’ve chosen, out of simply feeling what my intuitive knowing was telling me, to be the owl high in the tree, watching the unravelling of events in the bully’s life, and at times sincerely felt sad for them when the universe dished back the same energy multiplied.  Personally, I think this higher view allows for those intricate dynamics that we don’t know about to play out more perfectly in alignment with everyone’s highest good.  I’m less inclined to want to interfere with the genius of the universe.

More recently, I’m becoming acutely aware of this as the vibration in the universe picks up speed, and the wait is much, much shorter. I see it for myself as well as others. The benefit of being awake in this world is that when we screw up, we know how it works, and we can make amends as well as do other spiritual practices to smooth out the repercussions and heal the wrong before we get the slapback and it’s much softer. It’s softer because we have owned our actions and taken action. It’s softer because we were accountable to the energy dynamic that connects all of us as one.

There are still many of us who haven’t quite caught up, though. We can see it in the headlines. If you were to read the headlines as if they were the message from your Higher Self about how you’re doing today, how would your life be different? I think that those of us who know our internal landscape and are clear about our oneness on this beautiful earth are able to see the places inside of ourselves where we are still at war, and do the healing work necessary.

If each and every one of us were taking exquisite care of ourselves internally, perhaps the headlines would reflect that ramp up of love in the world. Before you begin to argue this point with a litany of reasons why it’s unreasonable and with proof that it’s a false idea, consider the possibility of love as a healing agent more powerful than any energy in this universe.

We’ve come a long way from the cave, baby, and it’s time to wake up. Gently, softly, I am whispering an “I love you” wakeup call.

Self Love Makes Lotsa Love Kittens

April 20, 2013

kittens galore

The more we love ourselves, the more love we’re able to receive and the more love we can pour onto the world freely.  If you do the math, you’ll end up finding that self love multiplies like bunnies and kittens.

A calculator cannot add up the exponential and radical profusion of miraculous ripples of good that reverberate into the ethers and bounce back.  No miracle shelter could begin to hold the colossal volume of overflowing goodness babies that proliferate the population when a being practices self love.

Giving without expectation of reward is only possible if one has mastered self love.  One who cannot love themselves fully is tethered energetically with invisible iron cords of non-release and prosperity constipation. Gifting doesn’t happen.  What happens is unspoken bartering, gift wrapped with a bow.  The poor sucker receiving this package is now under scrutiny.

This type of sad affair causes all manner of unappreciated gifts, unfulfilled expectations, and even some outright victimization, illnesses, and swampy nose dives of despair. Among other things, it’s just tight and contracted.  Ouch.  Love can barely squeeze in and love can barely squeeze out.  Suffering ensues.

The antidote for all of this is to do the unthinkable.  Overdose with self love lubricant.  It’s what society tells us is selfish, what mama taught us good girls don’t do, and what we feel like we should be hiding. We need to overdose, because we’re sorely lacking and because when one is malnourished, drastic measures are necessary.

We need high potency self love, pleasure breaks, bubble baths, treats, hugs, massages, laughter, happy movies, snuggling and cuddles, sweet smelling stuff, dancing wild, sleeping naked on satin sheets, crying in a pair of strong and loving arms, letting someone brush our hair, lounging around doing absolutely nothing while sipping expensive liquids, or what. ever. it. takes. We need sessions of proclaiming our gratitude for every single thing we see in the mirror from a hang nail to the curve of our cheek.

People, this is an international emergency.  Self love is the red cross of getting off the cross and caring for the only one that is right here in this moment.  You.

~Oceana LeBlanc is a transformational leader, women’s empowerment coach, tantric yogini, and shaman.

http://www.goddessoceana.com

Never Say Never

March 7, 2013

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When my child was five, I took him to the beach and he was so terrified that he stood at the edge of the grass and refused to walk on the sand, crying and crying.  I was beside myself, as I had hopes that swimming would be soothing for him, and enjoyable.  I made a tough decision at that time.  I decided that my child would swim no matter what, because the planet was 3/4 water and I felt it was an important skill.  Because of this commitment, I took him the next day, and the next.  He continued to stand there crying and soon it turned into rage.  I would sit about ten feet away on my towel and he would scream insults at me.  One that sticks in my head to this day was “I’m not swimming, you old handbag!!!!”  (He got that one mixed up, and I still laugh about it.)  The whole beach was staring at us.  Finally, through perseverance, I got him to the towel, and then the water.  The whole process took daily trips for weeks.  I could see the compassion in the faces of other beach-goers turn from compassion to utter dread at the sight of the mom with the screamer.

Swimming lessons was a disaster, as he stood there crying for most of it, due to the noise and commotion of having so many children around him.  The lifeguard came to speak with me.  She said that she wanted to congratulate me because she had seen parents who threw in the towel after one or two days, but never in her life had she seen a mother spend a full month acclimating her child to the beach.  She offered private lessons…and we were off and running on our journey to swim.

What was a regular class for most kids was something that was about 70% harder to navigate for my son with sensory processing disorder, or SPD.  When he was a few years old, a specialist told us something I would never forget.  She said that unfortunately, if we were to throw our child into deep water with a bunch of other kids, our child would be the one that drowned.  I stopped going to that specialist, and determined to spend my lifetime making her wrong if that was what it would take. Our first year of swimming lessons was the year that he accomplished getting wet and walking on sand and attempting to follow the instructor. Small headway, but I would take it.

The next year I tried something new.  My friend was offering for kids to come to her pool and take lessons with a teacher we paid by pooling funds.  It was a tiny bit better because the group was small and less chaotic for him, but still not optimal, and I felt sad that he just couldn’t keep up with the other kids.  Still I insisted on my swim mission.

The following year (to the best of my memory) I learned that I could get private lessons with that same teacher before the regular class, and so we signed him up for that and for the first time, he began to learn how to do some strokes.  One on one lessons, I found, was what worked best for him.  He could only stay afloat with a device, but he began to learn something.  I was elated.

Every year I did my best, and some years we couldn’t find lessons for him that he could deal with, and so my husband and I worked with him in the water ourselves, playing and encouraging him.  A few years ago, he could actually stay afloat for about six feet, swim underwater, and began to at least attempt the back float.  Other kids his age were already swimming away, but I continued to focus on whatever I could to help him only compete with himself.  He was small for his age, and so he blended in with younger children, which helped him not feel as self conscious.

Two years ago I found out about a man that I call the “Swim Whisperer”.  Jim offers classes at the local Y for homeschool kids.  I was very hopeful.  Within the first few weeks, my son was swimming better than he ever had, but still struggling for stamina and coordination.  I made another hard decision then and there to continue his lessons year round to ensure that he could maintain his stride and and improve through the winter.  Trudging through ice and storms to get to swimming was no picnic, and classes dramatically diminished that time of year.  This worked to our advantage, though,  and my son enjoyed lots of individual attention from the teacher.

Jim, the Swim Whisperer teaches like noone I have ever seen.  His patience, natural way with kids, and non-competitive classes are one of a kind.  He makes every single child the focus of a good example, and helps each of them shine.  He is magic.  I might also mention that every day swim day rolled around, my son still dreaded it.  He fought with me, didn’t want to go, and told me he hated it.  It was so hard for me to continue to drag him there when he really fought about it.  Many times I almost gave up, thinking perhaps I was fighting a losing battle, or that I was wrong to force him to learn something he didn’t care about.

My stubborn Taurus nature won out, and I held strong to my mission.  Always, I would come back to the thought that there had to be one thing this child could conquer, and that he would thank me someday because he would be able to enjoy the water, boating, summer fun…this kept me going.  Suddenly this season, my son’s swimming improved dramatically in the last year, and at almost 13 years of age, the payoff began!  My child, who was destined to drown, could now freestyle a full hundred yards, dive into the deep end and take off down the lane, and continues to improve with speed and skill.  

This whole process has taught me so much as a mother. It taught me that sometimes I have to stand for what is good for my child no matter how much he hates it.  Patience and love can get him there.  Relentless vision and commitment are as important as air when it comes to supporting a child.  It taught me that people can assume lots of things, but if I stay true to what my heart tells me is right on, miracles can happen.  I have learned subtle things about my son and how he operates, what works with him and what does not.  I learned that he says no to almost anything I suggest at first because this is the nature of SPD, that defensiveness is a first off self protection mechanism in a world that is too much for a subtle, sensitive soul.  I have learned that if I hold him with patience and love through his “no”, and allow him plenty of time to adjust without rushing, he often will melt into a “yes” after a while. 

I have learned to slow down, to completely give up comparing anyone to anyone else, but rather celebrate personal wins.  I’ve learned that well meaning people can say hurtful things without a clue as to the suffering they’ve caused.  I’ve learned to continue to plod on determinedly in the direction of my desire no matter how slow or long the journey is.  I’ve learned that when one makes up their mind with sharp focus, the universe does indeed conspire and sends us exactly what we need.  I’ve learned that if one teacher isn’t working, keep asking until you find the right one.  I’ve learned that just because something works for the majority, flexibility with individuals is best.  Most of all, I have learned to never give up and never, ever say never.

Unlovable, Ugly, and Surely Bad

July 5, 2012

 

Sometimes, I’m afraid to really let you see me, because I’m so flawed it’s ridiculous.  Somewhere along the line, I was thoroughly convinced that I was bad to the core, that noone could possibly love me, and that I had to do some pretty fancy footwork to make sure noone would find out.  After all, if anyone knew, they’d hate me and want me killed.

Where does a child go from there?  No matter how hard a parent tries, there will be messaging a child receives that’s bound to wound their psyche in some way.  Children are each unique, and they absorb messages we don’t even say out loud.  You could have four children and one family event of emotional charge, and each child will internalize it differently.

My own childhood was rich with uncertainty, fighting, anger, a good dose of poverty, and plenty of emotional abuse.  The flip side was some pretty awesome love, an absolutely gorgeous location, organic food, scholarships for voice lessons, some incredible adventures, and the freedom to explore and play to my heart’s content.  I’ve heard of far more terrifying childhoods than mine, and far more privileged ones as well.  Not one of us comes out unscathed.

Regardless of the decades of work I’ve done on myself, the personal growth workshops, deep transformational work, spiritual practices, and therapy, there will always be that voice inside.  It doesn’t go away as we assume it will if we work hard enough.  The truth is that it’s a part of us, and accepting this is actually a way to make peace with it.  The difference, I think, is whether we’re victimized by our internal predatory voice or empowered by it.

We can become skilled at distinguishing this voice, putting it aside or using it’s energy to generate a new message.  When I notice that I’m afraid people hate me because I’m shining too much, it’s a big red light that I need to breathe and listen.  That’s when I assess what I’m really afraid of, and give myself the talk.  It goes like this:  “Oceana, that’s your scared little girl.  She is trying to protect you and keep you safe. It’s time to reassure her that she’s safe, and that for you to do your job of helping other women feel confident enough to shine, you must allow yourself to shine.  It’s your dharma.  Go for it.”

I encourage you to create your own pep talk for those moments when your inner child is having a hard time.  I’d love to help you with this.  I offer introductory sessions for women who are exhausted with the way things are, want to feel empowered and passionate again, and want to go for their dreams but need some support and a skilled spiritual coach to guide them.  Just go HERE and follow the directions, and we’ll have you shining brighter than you ever have before…

Goddess Oceana

http://galadarling.com/article/100-ways-you-can-start-loving-yourself-right-now

http://www.owningpink.com/

http://www.livestrong.com/article/14692-inner-child/

Parenting from the Heart

July 1, 2012

I had a rather exceptional pair of parents who had already raised three other children, and they just didn’t punish me.  They allowed me to be who I was, and supported my interests, loved me big, and stayed out of my business unless I asked for help.  Who knows, maybe they were just too old and tired to deal, but somehow it worked to my benefit in some amazing ways.

I find I’m similar in my parenting style.  I’m easy going when it comes to allowing my son to pursue his interests, even if those interests aren’t what I had in mind for him.  This has required some willpower and ego wrestling on my part, but I’m pretty good at it now.  We both come up with interesting questions and we find new answers together.  I rarely ever tell him to do something simply because I said so and I’m the boss, and if I do it’s because I’m personally overwhelmed or stressed, so apologies follow.  Reasons for my requests that seem impractical to him in the moment are discussed, and if he comes up with a better way, we try it out.

In witnessing my internal process about whether I’m doing a good enough job as a mother, I’ve noticed this hidden voice emerging that tells me I’m falling behind, not good enough, that because of me my child won’t be a well-rounded and independent adult.  I’m realizing that the ensuing worry is such a waste of energy, now that I can see myself  doing it.  So instead, I’ve started handing my son’s well being over to his Higher Power and affirming clear guidance in supporting him, and for wonderful outcomes for his highest good.

Last night I received some great confirmation that it’s working.  Usually, because there’s only the three of us entrepreneurial spirits, we rarely eat at the kitchen table for meals.  If we’re home together, we sit on the couch and watch a show together.  I desired more face time with hubby and son, so I requested we turn off the tv and just eat together, expecting my son to be upset and sulk over missing a favorite show.  Surprisingly, he ran over and promptly shut off the tv while exclaiming, “Oh good!!!”.  We proceeded to have a great time catching up on his interests and enjoying our meal.  What I realized is that my lack of authoritarian parenting has actually produced a child who genuinely appreciates the time we spend together, and that he’s not only all right, he’s awesome.

Goddess Oceana

www.GoddessOceana.com

http://www.theparentszone.com/

http://freerangekids.wordpress.com/

http://motherhoodlater.com/our-blog/

http://www.childperspective.com/

Motherly Advice: A New Child-Rearing Manual

June 19, 2012

I’ve heard it and I’m over it.  I’ve heard every old belief, every story, and every ‘rule’ about child rearing possible and most of them don’t apply to my child.  Is it possible that they don’t apply to anyone other than the ego of the person that is touting the advice?  It may be.

When I had my son I was open to all manner of advice, and unfortunately I tried it all, but to no avail whatsoever.  You see, my son was unique in that he was born as himself, infinitely individual, unlike any other model ever made and only similar in that he was one of a species called human.  No two are the same.  Let’s start there, shall we?  A rational, totally left brained approach would have us believe that if it works for one, it works for all.

What are the things they tell you to do with babies?  Put them in a crib to sleep, they say, and swaddle them, let them scream it out.  You should take them for a ride in a car to get them to nap, but don’t ever let them sleep in your bed because they will never, ever fall asleep again by themselves for the rest of their natural lives.  Yes, someone said that to me.  There are plenty more where those came from, but I don’t feel like digging into that slime pit at the moment.

Our child would only sleep with me or my husband, screamed louder if we swaddled him, screamed as if on fire at the sight of a car, and made our ears bleed with the decibels inside a car from the sheer terror of the movement.  I have a memory regretfully branded into my brain of when I tried putting him in a crib.  He screamed at naptime daily until he vomited and shit himself for three days straight, and then was wary of me, his own mother, for two weeks afterwards.  (I was following the directions in the book which told me not to rescue him under any circumstances, while I sobbed silently outside the door, curled up in a ball on the floor.)  Both of us sweating and shaking, I finally came to my senses and realized cribs were not for us.

You see, he was too smart for Dr. Ferber who invented “ferberizing”, but I didn’t know this yet.  I allowed Dr. Ferber to alienate me from my own infant.  I just read last week that the other famous doctor whose advice I tried to follow like a good mommy, Dr. Sears, left a tidbit of crucially important information out of his books and has recently added the information.  Thank you, Dr. Sears, we are still suffering the repercussions of your neglect, 12 years later.

Do I carry a little bit of self righteousness about this topic?  You bet I do.  I feel that I have run alongside the best of them, and any one of us who’s had a child who doesn’t fit into the regular mold (as if there is one) and has been patronized, ridiculed, judged, advised, and bullied until she builds an armor like that of a Roman soldier,  I have earned stripes so deep that I’m loathe to explain anything to anyone anymore.

One thing I will tell you is that I have some wisdom to share.  My wisdom doesn’t include telling you what to do with your baby, or how to be a good mother.  My wisdom doesn’t give you some pat answer that’s going to fix everything.  My wisdom is about trusting your own wisdom, because every single mother is a unique being and every child is a new creation.  There’s never been one like her and never will be again.  You do get a manual, but you have to listen in the quiet for the information.  You have to listen to your heart and your gut, and you have to be able to withstand the onslaught of everyone else’s opinions and then not waver in your truth.

If I’ve come away with anything from the gift of motherhood, it’s the realization that I have to trust myself above all others, and that I have my beautiful, bright, highly intelligent, uniquely perfect son to thank for it, not Dr. Know It All.

How To Cook Anything Better

September 27, 2010

One thing I’ve learned that crosses all religious boundaries, that translates all hobbies into a blur, and that breaks exclusive barriers across the board is…love. This goes for cooking, knitting, pet care, raising children, scientific experiments, health, relationships, business, art, you name it.

My first mentor taught me metaphysics with some Buddhism thrown in for spice. She was the first person who whispered into my ear that when I chop vegetables, I need to thank them for giving their lives first. That information, because it seemed both bizarre and intriguing, stuck with me and I have diligently followed it to this day. Fifteen years later when I met my white tantric teacher, she taught me to chant mantras over my food, to never cook when I’m in a bad mood, and to find vegetables at the supermarket by touching them and feeling into their sentience and life energy. Then while cooking them, we would vibrate them even more with love and mantras, thereby improving the state of the planet through food.

I’ve found that these practices translate into all of life. For instance, we were also taught in Tantra that whatever we are creating will take on the vibration of our state. So if one is making a baby, be in a positive, spiritual state of mind. If one is knitting a sweater, one can chant prayers or mantras, intend love, and sing with each stitch. For business, when I’m writing a program, or sending out a newsletter, I pray, meditate for what to write, and fill myself with love and gratitude while I create. I intend love for all recipients, and the highest good for all outcomes.

This works for road trips, shopping, learning a new skill, eating a meal, and composting a garden. In fact, you can use this with kitchen witchery, which I do as well. The old rule of thumb when stirring food on the stove is to stir to the left to rid food of negative energy, and stir to the right to infuse good, positive things into the food. I’ve created many a meal in which people were uplifted before my eyes while ingesting what I ate. Have you ever gone out to eat and wondered why you left the restaurant feeling miserable, angry, or upset? It’s always good to consider that the chef may have been having a bad night. This is why blessing our food is so important before eating it.

I’m a firm proponent of blessings. Some might feel that they’re easy to come by, that they’re quite unnecessary, or that they don’t mean much. In my life, blessings are one of my most powerful tools. They impart grace, gratitude, hope and most of all, love. Blessing anything makes it so much better.


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