Not long ago I had an interesting exchange with a friend about how much LOVE parents are “supposed” to give to their children and this is what was my friend's opinion was. (Yes, I have a permission from my friend to share with you beautiful souls).
“LOVE STARTS AT HOME. Especially while you're still a kid, love must start from home. Imagine your kid's heart as a box & as parents, you must fill that box up to the brim. Completely full. Because, if you can't do that & you only manage to fill it up to, let's say, only 70% ? Your kid will then look for love elsewhere to top up that 30%. Often, that love that they find comes in various forms & most of them are not love. Kids grow up to be adults with this void in their hearts, then they end up looking for love at all the wrong places or turn to alternative satisfactions to get their fills. If there's a void in one's heart, it needs to be filled. Simple as that. How do we fix this as an adult?”
Now, at first, in full honesty, this made me really sad and I started feeling like a terrible mother because I know I am not filling up my children's love box 100% and I am not going to pretend that I do. I really want to, of course, but I don't.
I don't even know if something like that is possible.
I decided, however, that instead of tearing myself apart and drowning myself in this “mother's/parent's guilt” I will do what I teach others to do. I took it with me into my meditation that day, connecting to my Soul, my heart and my guides, asking for my truth and clarity on this very sensitive subject. I know how guilty we as mothers can feel and how much we can sacrifice to do just that (fill the love boxes to the brim) for our kids and how much we can put ourselves down with our own inner voice if we are not meeting our own expectations especially.
I knew there is a better way and a better answer, it just wasn't that clear to me at that point.
So, I set an intention in my meditation that day and I have just waited patiently for when that AHA moment of clarify and peace comes to me. I absolutely trusted Universe that it will as I was calling it in with my intention, my attention and my prayers & meditation. After all, I got to practice what I teach.
And then one day not long after I was cycling (I still laugh at how Universe & my spirit guides reward me for exercising this way as it was not the first time this happened).
This clarity & peace finally dawned down at me. No, it's not my responsibility to fill up my children's love box 100% nor do I think it's possible seeing how quickly that love can go out of that box for my children thanks to all their experiences they are having in the world that I have no real control over (neither it is a responsibility of us as parents but for the purpose of this sharing I will share what came up for me as mother). It suddenly became this whole “teach someone how to fish versus give them a fish” kind of a scenario to me.
I realised how, yes, we are meant to give them lots of love while they are still children and just love & accept them as they are, but more than that, it is also our responsibility to teach them how to do it for themselves and mainly model it to them on us as well because that's what stays with them much longer than any of my best intended lecturing that I ever provide to them .
Imagine, we just go out of our way and spend all our time and energy to give and give them love & acceptance and that's all they experience from us as parents. And then we send them off to the world in all this beautiful mama love bliss ball. In all these good efforts we end up not having time or energy to teach them what it means and how important it is to love & accept themselves first no matter what or we do not model it to them in the most genuine way possible in how we love & accept ourselves.
What will happen? Our children will go out into their life thinking that this is what is meant to happen, that they always have to find someone outside of themselves to fill their love box and love them and accept them and only then life will be happy and healthy (or anything you want to add here). And we will end up having all these adults expecting others to love & accept them and continue filling up their love boxes or else life is a disaster.
Does that sound right or true to you ?
Isn't it the issue that we actually already face so often ? Adults, who do not know how to love & accept themselves, always seeking outside validation or outside love & acceptance first because they do not know how or even why to fill up their own love boxes first ? I personally know it very well, because it has been my very own “challenge” since forever and it is also a reason why I started on my spiritual journey – because I have not felt loved as a child (I have realised through my healing journey that this is not really true, I have just perceived it that way all this time.)
I also did not know or understand how to do it for myself and how important it is to have such “life skills”. At the end of the day, it is not even spiritual endeavour, but a life's skill to have so we don't have to constantly “punish” ourselves in all these unhealthy and self-abusing ways or seek love & acceptance from others or something outside of us (no wonder drug addicts call effect of heroin “lover's arms”). And yes, we all know many obvious unhealthy and self-abusing ways to distract or punish ourselves but not many people talk about not so obvious ones that through lots of inner work and self-awareness became very obvious to me.
My ways of punishing myself are often masquerading as very noble ones: help more people, focus on others more and more (so you don't have to focus on yourself and your own challenges in life), give give give ....support other people's dreams, they are more important then yours....etc... Can you see how that is super unhealthy too when you do not know how to receive or how to take care of your own needs too ?
So, my truth that came up for me in all of this pondering and reflecting on the idea of “love box” was conclusion that as Mother, yes, I am here to do my best to fill up my children's love box while they are children but more than that I am here to hold a safe space for my children to learn how to love & accept themselves through teaching and modelling it to them with my own behaviour (and yes with help of coaches, healers, gurus and teachers, why not? Or whatever way suits you on your journey. There are so many ways to go about it once you know what your intention is, right ?).
And that is why I am also so deeply attracted to holding women's meditation & healing circles – to hold a safe space for women to do the same for themselves in the loving community of like-minded women. We are learning together in our circles how to love & accept ourselves just as we are. I am not the one fixing anyone, NO NO NO. I would never declare myself that kind of God. I very honestly believe that others can only guide and facilitate healing or learning but cannot “fix or save” us. Our own active, conscious and intentional participation in one way or another is absolutely crucial. It is a way to build a very solid foundation, rather than constantly depending on someone outside of you. If the foundation is not solid, no matter what you build, it will eventually crumble down, just to be re-built over and over again until the foundation is nicely set.
I only hold space for us and guide us all deeply within into our feminine so we can find those answers, energy, healing and the medicine that we need for ourselves from our heart, our soul, from the Source. I have witnessed it over and over again, how much more powerful it is when the “wisdom” comes from within, because then it's yours and it's true to you and you honour it and value it so much more than if someone just tells you who you are and what to do.
I am sure many beautiful women from our circles would confirm this as I just love to watch their lit up faces when they come back from the “inner journey” and share about the messages they received or just the energy they felt (or what a great sleep/rest they had :)). It's the best reward for me ever. And it's their reward for showing up for themselves over and over again, until they are ready to receive their own medicine. (p.s: NO, it's not a matter of one time only, it's a feminine way of healing, it's nice and slow and graduate - no pushing, no forcing, no judging, no rushing....slowly, deeply, deliciously.)
Now, I am not saying that we as women do not know how to do it for ourselves. It is often very intuitive too, if we allow ourselves to follow our intuition, which still requires connection to our centre, our heart and our soul, it doesn't come as easily out of anxiety, rush, desperation or energy of lack.
Some of us were very lucky to have parents who have not just loved us with all their might but also taught us how to love & accept ourselves fully and unconditionally as we are and we are capable of loving & parenting from that space ....but many of us have not experienced it and that is why we meet in circles, that is why we share, that is why we keep connecting to the Source energy which is our unlimited supply of energy of love & light so we have enough to give from. We can't give anything out of an empty love box, can we?
Let's face it we as Mothers & as Women we have such an important job in this life – to raise our children (whether our own children or others who we “mother”) “well enough” as they are the next generation for this planet and we know how much this planet needs people with big hearts and with lots of self-love & self-acceptance so they can one day love, live, act and create out of that space and not out of THE VOID.
I would love to understand your own opinion on this “love box” concept.
Please, do share with us and if you would like to join us in our women's circles of love,
please PM me for more details.
In Love & Magic Always
keeper of the safe space