Mothering

Inspiration on parenting

In The Gap

by

You know that moment when you really want to do something that you know isn’t good for you, and you feel yourself slipping into that semi-conscious state of not caring and then of not being fully awake in the moment you begin to indulge?

Like when sugar is calling… (Sorry, I realize that this may be a sensitive day for this post!)

But you know it could be one of a hundred things calling.  It could be indulging in despair or self-criticism or chocolate or sadness or *false guilt or narcotics or whatever vice rings especially “helpful” in the moment.

What is a girl to do?  Depending on your chemistry and your thinking habits, spending time in any one of these “pseudo coping options” could mean a loss of precious time and potentially loss of precious health or a loss of trust and intimacy in a relationship.

May I recommend making a list of diversions for such moments?  And when you feel the sliding begin, you know, just an inkling that the quick sand is close by, you can refer to your list and launch yourself out of harms way!  Fast!

It seems that often times, the need to be filled is simply dealing with some kind of boredom.  So giving yourself some productive task or permission to take a break, like a chance to take a walk and breathe fresh air or some other activity you enjoy, really fills in the gap nicely and can make a big difference at the end of the day.

Say the Easter candy is calling to you, (hopefully you didn’t buy a month’s supply and if so, hopefully you really won’t keep it in the house that long) but you realize that what you really need is a big drink of water and a diversion!  You need to put your headphones on and listen to your favorite movie soundtrack while you make dinner.

Or maybe, what you really need to do is tackle some small job that has been hanging over your head and causing you to feel undone in some way.  And just by tackling that you have the liberating feeling you need so that you can move on to something you really want to do!

What about getting that book you’ve been excited to read and giving yourself half an hour to read a bit?  Or what about giving your body a nutrient dense snack that helps you feel satiated and well-fed? (I’ve seen some pretty darn good recipes for peanut butter cups that you freeze! There is a recipe on this site for a whole food version that is very nutritious, but there are some out there with fewer ingredients and therefore easier to whip up!)

Which brings me to the last point which is: have healthy alternatives prepared for yourself and for your family!  Hey, if you have a choice between junk and food and they both are tasty, you can go for the good stuff and not have to chastise yourself later! And oh the joy of self-mastery!

By implementing some of these ideas, you will be creating an environment that supports your best interests, and that supportive environment can be a massively, powerful influence.

I pray for your health and well-being!

Love,

Jacque

P. S. What is *false guilt?  It is feeling guilty for not being perfect.  Not even close to Godly sorrow when you have really done something wrong, but just a time-wasting, miserable funk to jump into that is neither productive nor real.

P. P. S. If you have some luck with creating diversions, please share!

P. P. P. S My favorite diversion lately is a video I took of Garth dancing with and singing to one of our little granddaughters.  I find that I can’t help but smile at that!

P. P. P. P. S “He must reign until he hath put all enemies under His feet.”  He can enable our success.  Ask for His help! Happy Easter!

You’re Not Alone

by

It seems to me that one of the most, if not the most, discouraging “fiery dart” is the thought and then consequent feeling that you are experiencing life alone.  That you are isolated for one of a million reasons and that leaves you wondering if anyone has ever felt as disconnected as you feel at times.

Sometimes it’s the sense that everyone else knows what is happening in a conversation or in the world for that matter, but you.  Sometimes it’s the weird zone of going to a gathering and feeling ignored.  Oh, feeling invisible is horrible.  On the other hand, being the center of attention for something you don’t want to get any attention for isn’t fun either.

Do you ever wonder how other people’s children seem to be so obedient and helpful and why you have to ask multiple times before you get your children’s attention and help?

Or does it seem that your friend’s spouses are helpful and supportive and you wonder if your spouse knows how much you need them and are missing their attention and support?

Whatever the reason you may have felt “out of it” or less than or somehow inferior to others you know, I want to reassure you that you are not alone.

We are ALL striving and wondering and at times feeling sad and at times rejoicing.  We are all riding through the ebb and flow of life, sometimes feeling tossed in the air with no handhold, and sometimes in the middle of white, rapid water and occasionally we are riding on a the smooth, glossy green surface of a serene pool, with the sun on our faces and feeling relief for a season.

I am you and you are me.  We are so much alike, frail and fragile while also strong and extremely resilient!

Please know you’re not alone.  We’re all just doing the best we can with the  knowledge we have now.  And no one is better or lives an enchanted life.  Just different challenges at different times that have different names.

Know I’m sending out my love to you today.  I love knowing that I am not the only one living here.  You are with me and I am with you.

Sincerely,

Jacque

“I like myself, I love myself and I forgive myself.  I am never alone.  I am loved and valued.  I am not better or worse than anyone else.  My needs are important.  I am worthy of having them met. I am not in competition with any of my sisters.  We are all human and doing our best.  I cannot see all of the challenges of others, just as they cannot see mine.  My heart goes out to all of God’s children.”

 

7 Steps Seminar Coming!

by

To those of you who have attended the Lioness at the Door 7 Steps to Family Wellness, seven-month seminar, may I ask a favor of you?

Would you think for a bit about the most important take away you had from your experience in seminar and share it in a comment here?

God willing, we will start the 2017 series this month and I’d love for those who are thinking about registering, to hear your favorite or most life-changing lessons.

Our 2016 groups were stellar and I love all of you!

Here is a sneak peek at what you will find in the 7 Steps Workbook:

“Now, if you’re a champion at hearing negatives, believing negatives, and feeling crippled and then paralyzed by negatives, you will have to understand that this process of learning to take control of your mind, or rather to redirect it over and over until the negative default habit is curbed,will actually make chemical changes in your body and you may encounter resistance to this new way of thinking.  Not to mention that since you have believed these untruths for so long, the truth may sound downright fake and utterly wrong!  That is, of course, more nonsense!  We are God’s children, full of promise and infinite value possessing the power to choose and to learn from our experiences.  It follows then that to progress, to move forward, we have to become our own best advocate, hear the blatant lies we have believed, and proverbially kick them to the curb!  We are Lionesses!  We are family leaders!  This is the battle to fight; the interior battle for peace within. Then we can begin to tackle other problems in our personal and family terrain.”

No more being victimized by negative thoughts. No more!”

That is a good reminder for me today. I hope it is good food for thought for you too.

If you know of someone who would thrive in seminar, please spread the word! I look forward to another growing year with another great group!

Jacque

Multiply and Replenish

by

If you were giving life-affirming counsel to your children who were about to launch out on their own, in five words or less, what exactly would you want to tell them?

How would you let them know of your confidence in their ability to grow and learn?  How would you state your thoughts so clearly that they would have no need to question your expectation that they would follow in your footsteps and continue to evolve in their sphere?

I really can’t imagine anything better than the two words, multiply and replenish.

But what exactly do we multiply? And once we know that, how do we replenish “it”?

From a parent’s perspective, one of the most important things I would want to encourage my children to multiply is them! More of them in this world would be a great thing to me!  More of their goodness, and humor, more of their integrity and love.  More of their unique way of seeing and doing things, and more of their desires to lift and to bless.  Of course, I’d want more of their laughter and more of their enjoyment in the world around them and more joy in the fruit of their labors and talents they are cultivating.

Here is yet another way that being a parent is incredibly instructive. If as children of God we sometimes perceive our Father’s counsel and commands to us as something to fear or to be burdened by, using the lens of our own parenthood, much of our misperceptions can be corrected quickly.

If you wonder what the most creative being in the universe desires for you, why not take a moment and write out your desires for your children?

What would you counsel them to embrace?

What would you counsel them to avoid?

How would you encourage them to maintain their ability to chose?

What would you love to see them love about themselves?

What do you hope they will enjoy, embrace and experience while they are here?

in other words, how do you want to see them “multiply” everything they have been given?

And once you have a sense of what can be multiplied, what about the replenishing part? Is it good then, to restore ourselves after exertion?  Is it acceptable to fill ourselves back up with hope after we have experienced some kind of fear?

Again, what would you counsel your own children to do?

Most of all, it seems to me that these two expansive and resplendent words illustrate our never-ending potential; that potential that we have to use faith to wrap our heads around while we have our mortal, limited vision.

What are your thoughts?

Today I hope you will consider your potential. I hope you will allow yourself to expand and “burst the fetters of your mind.”

Love,

Jacque

 

It’s A Big Deal!

by

I heard recently that there is a new push, to help parents, particularly mothers, to stop wondering what is wrong with them when they get burned out and can’t run as fast as they think they should, when often, they simply aren’t getting the rest they need and have expectations that would kill a seasoned athlete.

So may I kindly suggest that if you’re going to bed consistently after 10:00-10:30 you’re not getting enough sleep?

There may not be anything wrong with you, maybe you’re just not renewing at night.  Is this a revelation?  Do you go to bed late and have headaches during the day?  Or do you live on 4-5 hours of sleep and think you should be able to feel consistently energetic and run marathons and generally keep up with everyone you compare yourself to?

Friends, self-care habits are a big, big, big deal!  Unless you are an out-lying statistical phenomenon, and function beautifully on four hours of sleep, you’d better shift things up and go to bed earlier if you are struggling with ill health, mental, emotional, spiritual or physical.

Amazingly, for a young mother, sleep is the most coveted commodity, isn’t it?  Then why give it up so easily for something as un-self-care-ish as watching depressing news or scrolling through Facebook or playing a digital game or whatever other time-killing pursuits there are?

As always, if you are noticing that you aren’t functioning well in some way, go back to the basics and see if your life has gotten out of balance in some way.  Ask the difficult, but oh-so-obvious questions:

Am I getting enough sleep? (Shoot for 8 hours! Sorry you nursing moms, the day will come!)

Am I drinking enough water? (For sure when you are thirsty, but shoot for 8 glasses)

Am I eating real food at regular intervals throughout the day?

Am I getting some form of exercise on a daily basis, wether it’s mopping a floor, climbing stairs, walking the dog, pushing a stroller, etc.  (Does NOT need to be in a gym!)

Am I making time for my mind to be quiet? (Meditation and prayer)

Chances are, when these questions can be answered affirmatively, you’ll find that you are feeling pretty well.  Of course there are times when a malfunction occurs and simple re-balancing is not enough.  But in general, we are quite resilient, when our needs are being accknowledged and met.

Oh, and may I add one more suggestion? If you are not making time to be alone with your spouse to enjoy a fulfilling intimate life together, I would highly recommend that you put that on your high priority list and plan for it!  Rest during the day if needs be, don’t over schedule yourself, take time to pamper yourself and then pamper him!  Sex, in a committed long-term relationship is extremely healthy for you in every way possible.  And wow, does it help to make life sweet.

I hope you will take extremely good care of yourself today!

Love,

Jacque

P. S. Another question to ask would be if you may need to recruit some help if you are fighting with some kind of anxiety that is making everything far more difficult than it needs to be.  There are so many helping hands and listening ears out there! If you need it, don’t hesitate to find it.  I have been there and I am so grateful to the professionals who have helped me to unravel those difficult, looping feelings.  My mantra, when I would feel the anxiety starting to rise, became, “Don’t stay there!” And I hope you won’t stay there either. Be well.