Mothering

Inspiration on parenting

Japanese Proverb

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“Who travels for love finds a thousand miles not longer than one.”

When we consider our “why” for doing the challenging work of introspection, self-discipline and self-caring, isn’t it mostly our love for those who depend on us, whose lives are impacted most by our efforts to be the best version of ourselves we can be?

I think that’s what love is for. To give us the motivation, the grit and the will to evolve and grow!

When we can’t muster up the courage for ourselves, we can more assuredly do it for them!

Happy, happy 2018!

With much love,

Jacque

P.S. If these posts have been helpful to you this year, please consider sharing Lioness with a friend! I would love to double our subscribers and create a larger outreach of support and encouragement to families everywhere! Thank you for being here!

Choose Well, Read Well

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I’m crazy about all things C.S. Lewis! And so I’m really excited to be starting the Narnia Code, a book by Michael Ward about the Chronicles of Narnia. Only a few pages in I came across a noteworthy quote for Lionesses!

“Stories like Narnia deserve to be taken very seriously because what we read as children is perhaps the most important literature we ever encounter. We’re then at a formative stage of life. “The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world” goes the saying. And if that’s true, what about the hand that holds the bedtime fairy-tale?”

Does this idea ring true to you? That the literature you are reading to your children now is possibly the most important of their lives?

What a great moment in life! For you and for your children!

God bless all your caring efforts for their growth.

Be well,

Jacque

 

Mentorship

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If you are parenting, you are also mentoring. You’re an adviser, counselor, guide and trainer.

But does the use of the word mentor, in place of parent, change the feeling of your job a little?

It does for me! Particularly now that my children are grown, the title of mentor seems

to fit more often than parent.

So when might you be training and teaching? When kids are learning to clean, to answer or make phone calls properly, to communicate, to read and so on?

How about advising? Could that be when you are listening, as the wonderful validator that you are, and your child asks for your assistance when you offer to be help in appropriate ways with their problem?

My children learned things from my parenting that they will want to do differently with their children. And I’d hope there are things I did as a parent that they will allow themselves to automatically repeat because they saw positive fruit from those things. Mentorship is an important part of our growth and doesn’t end when we ourselves are grown.

I am still learning from my parents and from my friends who are further down the path than I am! I am grateful to be able to ask, “What comes next?” and “What did you do?” and “What would you do differently if given the chance?”

So here’s a challenge: to see yourself as a positive role model and mentor for all of the children in your life, and to consider the mentors you have in yours. Who is mentoring you?

Be well!

Love,

Jacque

 

 

 

Small Things With Great Love

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In his book, Seven Women and the Secret of Their Greatness, Eric Metaxas tells of the criticism that Mother Teresa received from people within and from without the church. Some thought that she should go after social structures at the heart of creating poverty, while others thought she should reorganize her missionaries so that they could help more people at a time. They suggested that governments or social programs could do more than a group of nuns and so on.

Her response was, “that God required her to do small things with great love; that while government welfare programs exist for quite admirable purposes, ‘Christian love is for a person.’ I do not add up, I only subtract from the total number of poor or dying….every act of love for the unwanted and the poor is important to Jesus.”

As you think back over this day my friend, what acts of love did you perform in your own house? Think of everything from wiping noses to cooking meals to reading stories to kindly and firmly saying no when the moment rightly called for that response.

You are doing small things every day with great love.

I hope you can feel the love and make your contribution a happy, dedicated gift to God.

May He bless your every need.

Love,

Jacque

Choose Your Response

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Ok Ladies, here’s a little shot in the arm if you’re open for it!

“In particular, the onset and course of disease are strongly linked to a person’s ability and willingness to cope with stress. Stresses that we choose evoke a response totally different from those we’d like to avoid but cannot.  Helplessness is worse than the stress itself.” (Italics added – isn’t that an amazing insight?)

“The interpretation of stress is always tricky for an outsider, for the same circumstances can be detrimental to one and neutral or even beneficial to another. Johns Hopkins University psychiatrist Jerome Frank notes that “stress comes mainly from the patient’s interpretation of events.”

These quotes are from the delightful book, Love, Medicine and Miracles by Bernie Siegal, and they fascinate me because I can see the truth of them in my own life and health.

A few things to consider:
1 What is easy for you to deal with may be difficult for someone else to handle, and vice versa. One more reason we cannot know the burdens of others.
2 If you are feeling stress, do your best to re-frame it in your mind and change it into something you can handle without as much discomfort.
3 Resorting to a belief of helplessness is not only unhealthy emotionally, but physically too. Remember the Eleanor Roosevelt quote that says that no one can put you down without your permission? It seems that slipping into helplessness is also a choice. The greatest among us stay out of the victim role of believing they have no control. It’s a worthy goal for all of us!
4 Finding meaning in any event can change the level of stress we feel. If you believe that the challenge you have now will in the long run be turned to your good and give you valuable experience, you will have greater energy to apply yourself to learning and be more flexible and teachable.
5 Changing our habitual thinking patterns also changes our chemistry and circuitry! Know that you can create new pathways and stir up a different chemical soup for your mind to live more comfortably than running from one adrenaline pumping stress to another. Retraining your belief is what it takes.

“I am a life-long learner.”
“I am learning new ways of responding to stress.”
“I am re-framing my interpretation of the events in my life.”
“I am strong and resilient.”
“I care about my future and my health.”
“I am a great role-model for my children!”

A new mantra requires rehearsal! Over and over and over again. It took years of saying negative things to yourself over and over and over again for them to take hold in your belief system. So it follows, that shifting things to the positive will take some effort.

Are you ready for better days? Awesome! Let’s get to work and remove helpless from our thoughts and our vocabulary.

Be well!

Love,

Jacque