Whether you are already the mother of three beautiful human beings, or whether you are expecting your first, what you are about to read is something you’ve never heard before. And it is crucial.
The internet is full of useful (and useless) information about anything and everything you might look for – baby sleep, child development, potty training, breastfeeding, weaning, baby-led weaning, and whatnot. But the things you will never find online, are the things you will never look for. Because no one told you they exist.
I will try and make it as short and concise as possible because it is a lot to take. But if there’s one thing you should read today – this would be it.
But First, a Little Story about Me (that is really everyone’s story)
When I was a teenager, I liked listening to rock bands; music that my mother couldn’t comprehend. I was asked to listen to music in the privacy of my room, where my taste would not bother her. And I did.
I liked wearing certain things that she disapproved of; I was told to get a job and buy my own clothes. And I did.
I liked hanging out with (amazing) people, who she couldn’t understand. I was told I couldn’t, and I left the house.
Some 15 years later, when I gave birth my little one, my mom told me there is only one right way, of mothering a newborn. I asked her to leave.
And now a clarification – my mother and I have an amazing relationship. She is a wonderful grandmother and a devoted mother; I love her deeply. We speak every day and we try and see each other at least once a week. But this is not because of the way she brought me up, it is despite it.
I’m sure that your examples are different, but in their nature – they are the same. Throughout our lives, we always had, and always will need to choose between our truth, what we know is right for us, and the “love”, or the attachment, of our loved ones.
The Dual Nature of a Newborn
The human baby is the least developed newborn of all mammals. We are born 100% dependant upon our caregivers. There is absolutely nothing we can do to assist our own survival. Our bodies are practically useless – they keep us alive but allow us zero control. Dependency is thus the core essence of our physical bodies.
But this little dependent body is not the only thing emerging into this world at birth, it is accompanied by our (yet) undefeatable spirit, the core essence of which is freedom.
This duality, or even contradiction if you will, between dependency and freedom, escorts us from the day we are born and until we take our very last breath.
Protection, or freedom?
The Meaning of a Dual Being
Our needs for security, protection, belonging, trust, being seen, and many others, stem from the essence of our bodies – ultimate dependency. Our needs for freedom, independence, autonomy, choice, self-expression, creativity, authenticity, and many others, stem from the essence of our spirit – ultimate freedom. Yet we, and our parents, and their parents – were forced to choose: freedom or protection.
This is a choice our little ones won’t have to make. If we will find the courage to step outside the comfort zone (which is everything but comfortable, it is just familiar) and start doing things differently.
And so We are Born – Trusting and Free
Humberto Maturana, the renowned The Chilean biologist, said that we are born fully trusting the world, fully trusting humanity. We know, unconsciously, that we will be taken care of. That is why we cry with the smallest discomfort – from that very first day, we find it hard to believe no one (had yet) came to assist us, and we call them, with everything we have. In those first days, weeks, and months, we are only free to shout out our dependency; that is the only ability we have.
But what are We Born Into?
We are born into a world that had been ruled by moralistic judgments for 7,000 years. The language we speak, the language that defines us, is the language of “okay”/”not okay”, as if something like that even exists. We live in a world that defines us by our actions, even when we have no other choice but following through with that action.
You know what I mean; when doing anything the word deems “okay”, the sounds of “wow! Good girl!”, “you’re amazing!”, and “way to go!” fill the air. But, when doing something the world judges as a misconduct, our definition suddenly changes; we are now spoiled, manipulative, sassy, or just “NO”, and “how many times do I have to tell you”. We are now subject to the guilt, the fear, and the same – the cross-generational burden our parents carry.
The fragile limit between these two definitions teaches us two things: that these two definitions don’t really exist, and since they don’t exist, there isn’t really a limit. The concepts of good and bad, okay not okay, are human inventions distancing us from our essence; forcing us to choose our freedom and give up the love, or choose the love and give up our freedom.
Protection or freedom? The choice is there, of course, but it’s a sad one to make.
Trust to Have, is Fear to Lose
Born completely dependent, the human survival instinct leads us to comply with the social norms we are born into; even if we don’t understand them, even if we don’t know what they mean. The fear of losing the care is innate. The price to pay is way too great. And so, generation after generation, we raise human beings whose main purpose in life is to be socially accepted, to be okay. Human beings who will pay the price of freedom, because they don’t know another option exists.
But There is Another Option
And if you are reading this, you will raise your children outside the social structure of good and bad. Outside the social structure of fear, guilt, and shame. You will not force your children to choose between their inner truth, to your love and attachment; to the promise of protection, and security they withhold.
There is Hope
Children whose emotional needs are met hand in hand with their physical needs, grow up being human beings who are whole, who celebrate the unity of life, of body and spirit, and believe they are who they really are – amazing human beings, in and of themselves. They do not let external definitions manage them, they accept failure and strive for success, just like nature intended them to.
Growing up I gave up protection to win my freedom; what did you give up? Join my Facebook group and tell me about your experience. Together we’ll find your way to your kids, without anyone having to give up on anything 🙂