Mommying Mommy: Unyielding anxiety

I am honestly quite an anxious person. Or rather, I feel a great deal of anxiety. And when I am most anxious, I try to be in control. I can’t control life. All I can do my best and and that’s it. Nothing is really certain in the world. Control over anything but myself isn’t real.

I know all these things about why I can’t control life, but that doesn’t mean I won’t try. I figure if I am control of everything there is no need for me to be anxious.  So, I plan to get whatever I want. I push to get whatever I want. I work to get what I want. I scheme to get whatever I want; anything but trust whatever I want to unfold. The odd time when things did blossom into what I most wanted, it was beautiful. Maybe I haven’t recovered from the beauty of that experience.

As we have started making Boo#2, I find myself rife with anxiety. I am pushing. I am working. I am doing everything I can to have/make/create another life as if it was all mine to do all alone. We have a midwife, I am looking at furniture, charting my temperature, peeing on sticks, budgeting for the future, following my ovulation, drinking my fertility tea, doing my fertility yoga practice…. all with the hope and prayer that all this activity unfolding into a healthy baby, right now!!!!!!

God knows that babies arrive how and when they want. They also do what they want. I really have little say in the matter. But somehow I’ve decided it’s time. So now the tension mounts and I try to control a situation that is out of my control. Because you know, anxiety will increase your fertility. It sure will 🙂

Somehow I want to tie up this post with a bow of enlightenment and serenity. You know a pithy ending that means I’ve grown and shit. But I haven’t really grown :). I just know that I don’t really want to be this way. Somehow, it never works. I push too hard and end up no where. We’ll see what happens next.

Take Precious Care

J

Mommying Mommy: Parenting Me

One fateful Saturday Morning I stumbled across the most interesting parenting article. It was a guide for what to expect from your little ones as they grow and how to best support them. Part of me was intrigued and the other part suspicious. I am naturally suspicious of just about everything and okay with it 😀

After reading the guide, I had a few more insights about how to better support Little Boo aaaannnnddd I had a deeper understanding of little me. I’d always felt that I had a surly teenager and a four year old battling my adult self for control. This guide confirmed my suspicion and gave me hope.

It was soothing to see where and how I am developmentally stuck. It’s super exciting to see how to best parent myself when my inner teenager and Little Me show up. Although I must say they usually show up when I am need of self care in some way. They have wisdom and their approach reflects what they most want me to heal.

I still have some way to go before I can say that I understand them because I find myself more attached to shutting them up than to actually hearing what they have to say. But I can say this guide helped. I am committed to hearing them more. I am committed to receiving the wisdom they have to offer.

 

Until next time, take Precious Care!

J

Hooray for all the little voices in my head

As I darted around the bedroom this morning an angry voice popped up in my head. She demanded that I take some time to be real with myself about where my business and my life are heading. She was insistent that I take some time to rest. She reminded me that I needed to be more mindful of all the things I take on in the hopes of being loved. These situations rarely turn out how I want/expect. She also said  that I was no good to myself or anyone else if I was constantly on the verge of “fuck it”. I quickly pressed mute on this voice and hurried downstairs. I needed to make Little Boo breakfast and start the day. Everything is fine!

Now.. I so want to say that my disregarding my own wisdom is rare, but it’s not. After spending some time thinking about that voice’s advice today I realized that the voice was right.

1) I am one to volunteer to do some shit in hopes of making friends. Instead of making friends, I become doer of shit that no one else wants to do. (booooooooo!)

2) After caring for my sick husband and Little Boo, I am in dire need of me time!

3) I am on the verge of some major change. Moving forward mindfully would be helpful.

And finally 4) I give myself some excellent advice; especially when it comes to relationships with others. Why am I hell bent on not following it?

I find that I am most likely to disregard my own advice when it contradicts what I think others want from me.  There is a part of me who really wants to be liked and useful–even at my own detriment. In fact I believe that this part of me likes being at it’s own detriment. This way I can act like a martyr if you don’t like me how I want you to. I mean if I can’t be liked, I should at least be a martyr :D. You don’t like me after I sacrificed all this shit for you? How dare you!! I know this sounds familiar to someone reading this post ;D.

But really, I’d like to move into a space where loving myself is more important than what others do. That shit sounds hard and a bit scary, yet liberating. We’ll see 🙂

 

Take Precious Care,

J

 

 

 

Mommying Mommy: Emotional Management

Quite often managing my own emotions in front of Little Boo kicks my ass. In the moment, it’s so much easier to be absorbed in what I am trying to teach Little Boo through words, rather than what I teach him through action. Sadly, I am not always the woman I’d like to be in front of him and don’t always remember to give him a “mommy was showing her ass for this reason today” lecture. The kid deserves an explanation and can handle it.

Slowly, I am learning to give myself compassion and love as I give compassion and love to Little Boo. It feels foolish to expect myself to be perfect and have it all together all the time. I learn the most and the best when things get messy and I have to sort it out. That doesn’t mean I need to create large messes, but I can give myself a little loving compassion when I do. That’s what I would do for him.

It often feels like our emotions mirror one another. When he gets agitated, I get agitated as well, but never for the same reason. There is often a small part of me that wants be difficult, by feeling and expressing it’s own frustration at the same time; as if Little me is fighting for my attention, affection and loving forgiveness. When I have energy I can see and attend to both. I can love him and myself at the same time. In those moments, peace comes quickly.

The challenge is remaining spacious enough to love myself as I would love Little Boo. It’s been quite hard to do so lately. Between nursery school applications, sickness, honey-do’s, and a whole host of shit that ain’t mine but require my energy, my internal space has evaporated. It’s been tough to be compassionate with him or me. Despite all this crap, I keep growing—just like little Boo.

Rather than being the parent who knows everything it often feels like my son is teaching me. Everyday he gently shows me how to love and have compassion for the parts of me that are little. I tell ya, Little Boo is amazing.

Take Precious Care!

J

Mommying Mommy: I love my Mommy Issues

I remember preparing to get pregnant with Little Boo. I worked so hard to get through, what I considered to be my “shit”. Specifically, my shit is an accumulation of habits, attitudes, perspectives and patterns I used to get through childhood. The shit was helpful then. It really ain’t so helpful right now. I worked with intuitives, saw a shaman, prayed, read, went to therapy. I did all I could to “heal” myself of this pain I’ve been feeling for so long.

Little Boo finally came. We moved from the west coast to the east coast. I watched my father die of cancer. I started working again. Life moved on and expanded beyond my Mommy Issues. But somehow, like always, I am here again with this pain. It stirs within me. It grabs my attention and wrestles me to the floor. It takes me over and I succumb to it; forgetting who and where I am.

Here I am again with this pain in my chest. Here I am again preparing to do battle with a part of me that.. maybe I should not be fighting. I mean, if something grabs my attention from within me– it must have something important to say. I am learning to listen. If something is tugging at my pants leg because it wants me–it must need me. I’m working on stopping and loving it. Slowly I am learning to stop fighting my pain. It has something for me and I don’t need to fight it.

As I have learned to be kinder to me my pain has calmed down and softened a bit. I don’t only get more pain when I stop and listen to it. Sometimes I get a five year old hugging me from the inside and telling me that everything will be okay. Other times, I get invitations to imaginary tea parties and a strong desire to wear fancy hats.

Since my son is a toddler, sometimes Little me takes the place of pain and plays with my son. It seems to bring everyone involved fun.

Slowly, I am learning to stop seeing pain and start hearing myself. I am learning to attend to and address my own needs. I am learning to love myself and all my little Mommy issues. All I needed to do was to stop fighting myself and start listening.

 

Take Precious Care,

J

Dropping into the heart: Learning to see love

Over the past few days, while working with Wild Rose, I’ve had the oddest realization. Love has always been all around me; I just couldn’t see it. I just couldn’t understand, know, receive, perceive or feel love. There was just too much pain.

The pain comes from not knowing who or how I am. I have been lost in enmeshment with others. I confuse my own goals, values and sense of self with theirs. Then I retract in anger when I don’t or feel like I can’t express myself.

When I can honor and express myself, I don’t need to flee from others because they don’t honor who I am. When I have enough space to “let others off the hook” of allowing me to be my by attending to myself, I can see how much I am loved. Now, that doesn’t mean that they ways in which I was/am loved jive with my values, essence, morals or what have you. It doesn’t mean that I always get what I want. But it does mean that I can recognize and appreciate what others are sharing with me while I focus on taking care of myself.

The rub for me has been accepting who I am and how I be, while knowing that it’s okay if others be differently. It’s not my job to “be” for them so they can be happy or be against them so they can be happy. I don’t have to respond to that. It’s my job to be and love me. If we are on the same page about life good; let’s roll. If not, that’s fine too. All things can support and nourish our us if we allow them to. All things are valuable in their own way.

That’s all for now 🙂 Until next time..

Take Precious Care!

Jeannette

 

Still in the body: Dropping into the Heart

Since I am now reading Karen L. Anderson’s book: The Peaceful Daughter’s Guide, working with my body has changed a bit. Somehow my body no longer feels like a foreign entity that kicks my ass for various reasons that make no sense to me.

I can now appreciate my body as an integral part of my being that allows me to participate in life. When I heed it’s wisdom my body offers me all sorts of juicy information about the past, present and sometimes the future. My challenge in life has just been staying with myself, in my body, no matter what is going on. I have a tendency to wig out, forget my body and then come back to it much later than originally anticipated.

Which is why I find Karen L. Anderson’s suggestion of becoming an observer such a fascinating one. As I read it, her intention with this exercise is to support you in noticing what emotions and thoughts arise when you are triggered. If you watch what comes up you learn that it’s possible for you to choose different thoughts, feelings and actions.

I’ll be honest, it’s my first day on this exercise. But I did detect a difference between when I noticed things from my heart and when I noticed things from my head. My heart space seemed to integrate things in a respectful loving way. Everything felt connected, but yet okay as it’s beautiful self. Everything fit together like an amazing mosaic. Each piece is working on itself and yet fits together to create beauty. Even though I did sense a little maliciousness upon occasion, it didn’t feel like I needed to take it personally and engage which is something I usually do. I didn’t fly off the handle today 😀 It’s a miracle!

Noticing things from my third eye or head feels sharp and clear, but also highly prone to change. It’s like being presented with a myriad of choices all at once. When I observe from my third eye it’s easy to get lost in millions of different possibilities inherent in each breath.

I enjoy clear sharp thinking, but Lawd I love the gushy oneness. It just felt all good in my body 🙂 Which is very important given all the pain it’s been through– right?

We’ll see how this comes together!

Be good to yourself!

J

Still in the body: Emotionally Constipated

Damn ya’ll, I have hit a big snag in my mmmmm… voyage into the body. My emotions are literally fucking me up. I was in pain.

No, really I was in break-out the whiskey and bite a stick because you are about to cut something off pain. It started as a twinge in my right hip. I thought it was due to a little bit of rough housing combined with improper alignment during my yoga practice. So, I shifted my yoga practice, stopped rough housing with my son and had confidence that the pain would go away.

It didn’t. Not only did the pain increase, it started to rise up into my lower back. Meaning whenever I woke up in the morning, I rolled out of bed scrunched and hunched over on my right side and could barely walk. It took most of the morning to warm my body up and picking up my son was out of the question. Try not picking up a toddler 🙁 To let me know that it was serious, my body started waking up at God-awful hours and not going back to sleep until 10 minutes before my alarm. No herbal concoction could bring me good sleep. Only NyQuil would do and even with that shit I was up at 5-ish.

In the midst of all this physical pain and frustration, I forgot to feel my feelings. I never checked in. I mean I kept grounding chakras and shifting around my yoga practice which offered some relief. But, it took me a week or so to actually stop and feel my feelings.

My emotions (and I have lots of them) have a way of pooling in my hips and lower back. When I refuse to pay attention to what I am feeling, this is usually where pain starts and increases until I listen. If I am super stubborn (and I am) my sleep starts to mess up. When I wake early and my hips throb– that is my clue to just let my feelings flow. So, eventually I did just that.

What did I hear? I heard all sorts of nasty stuff 🙂 Rage, frustration, pain from many moons ago. All sorts of things that I have ignored over the years because it has been easier to bury my feelings underneath food, dick, alcohol and/or good weed over the years than to actually feel anything.

All this listening and feeling has led me to another book. I know, I am a sucker for heal your bullshit books. But, my lower back has stopped hurting and my hips are less cranky. There is hope for me yet 🙂

Until next time, Stay warm and be good yourself!

J

 

Yoga and Herbs to the rescue: Terror and Panic

So as I continue to ease off the crazy amount of tinctures I was taking a couple of things began to emerge namely terror, anxiety and panic.

Anxiety and I are old buddies. He’s always humming in the background; ensuring that my i’s are dotted, t’s are crossed and that all the doors are locked. Although, he’s a bit much sometimes, I always found him to be comforting and manageable when I allow him to do his thing.

However, terror and panic are new to me. At least, I thought so. After being a bit more honest with myself, I realized that the only time I wasn’t actively cycling through terror and panic was when I lived in France. So, I’ve been actively freaking the fuck out on the regular now for years.

Now my version of terror and panic aren’t about pulling my hair out and throwing things. I am sure it looks different for everyone, but my version resembles righteous anger coupled with self – destruction. I build something for myself then start to lash out at those surrounding me as if I am responding to what initiated (and still fuels)  my panic and terror many moons ago. Finding myself  quite embarrassed, I then self-destruct, taking everything down around me. Next I hide out and not speak to anyone for about 3 – 6 months. Rinse and repeat through out my 20’s and most  of my 30’s. I can’t continue to do this with a kid.

Rather than get into the origin of my anxiety, terror and panic, I will tell you what I have been doing about it; especially since I can actually feel  and see it in action these days.

  1. I changed my yoga practice. Since my terror and panic are on an upswing (yay!) I’ve realized that I need a more vigorous practice. Now vigorous is in the eye of the beholder, but I’ve kicked things up a notch. I have also been working with extending my exhalation when I practice pranayama–which has been awesome for those nights when I am up at 3am and  pissed about it.
  2. I’ve been focusing on being more present in my body. It’s kind of bizarre for me to only recently notice that I have been low key freaking the fuck out for years now. If I can’t connect with myself or my feelings it means I am not fully in my body. So I start the morning off with a practice to help bring me into my body.
  3. I’ve been working with my personal boundaries. Meaning, since I am re-learning to be in my body, I am coming to understand how my body acts as a boundary between me and everything else. In short I am beginning to experience where I end and where you begin.
  4. I’ve also been asking plant spirits for help. Although I am still enjoying some herbal teas and tinctures, I’ve been calling up the divine essences of certain plants for help. For example, did you know that Yarrow is excellent at helping you create and maintain boundaries and that stinging nettles will actually defend you? I ask for their help (and a few others) every morning.

I’ve also been playing with Karla McLaren’s The Language of Emotions and Healing Trauma by Peter Levine, Phd.

As things evolve with my yoga and herbal practice I’ll keep you posted.

In the meanwhile, take precious care.