reclaim the choice for our children

hello my dears,

i believe the work of dr. shefali tsabary is revolutionary in parenting and developing deep connections within ourselves and with others. add this to your list of must watch, dr. shefali tsabary the awakened self on oprah’s super soul sessions.

http://www.oprah.com/own-supersoulsessions/dr-shefali-tsabary-the-awakened-self

dr. shefali’s message takes a great deal of openness and time to process. here are my notes and key takeaways:

key takeaways:

  • protect our children’s authentic selves
  • children are born their true selves until parenting and culture happens
  • do, accomplish, be more because who we are is not enough
  • leading to a false sense of self with pain and emptiness
  • reclaim the choice for our children
  • need to give up our delusion of control and superiority of our ego
  • parents to heal and children liberated
  • parent + child is the foundation for deep connections within ourselves and with others.

we were once that child with grace, wonder, beauty, connection, fully present. then parenting and culture happened, love from fear and ego. we were taught to live outwardly instead of inwardly, sheltered instead of liberated. measured against the checklist of doing, accomplishing, and being more. because who we are was not enough, we start shedding our authentic self. all to make our parents look and feel better about their own insecurities.

teen years frown upon as rebellious and highly emotional because we realize something is not right. pain and emptiness numbed with drugs, food, sex, bullying, violence, etc. living with a false sense of self, we spend midlife searching for ourselves and seeking purpose. it is a vicious cycle when becoming parents ourselves.

do we dare to discover our own delusion and pain?

the first step to reclaiming the choice for our children is to give up our delusion to even think we need to have control. give up our thirst for superiority and longevity of our ego. our children are not the easel to paint the life we never had. they are not puppets for us to fake a false life. emotional wounds spilling out like lava, anywhere they stand, we are wounded, we are triggered. these are beautiful words from dr. shefali.

parents will heal and children liberated. the parent and child relationship is the foundation to deep connections within ourselves and with others.

with gratitude,
samantha

there is unhappiness in me.

hello my dears,

we all want to be happy.
yet we seek joy and acceptance from the external world,
to discover it is never enough.

the pain becomes greater than our ability to cope.
we smile our way thru each day while numbing or inflicting pain on to others.
our authentic and compassionate self, buried under anxiety and depression.

we are a nation in need of healing, awareness, and positive action.
protect our children’s spirit (who they really are), creativity (for a better world), and goodness (to spread love).

teach them that happiness is an inside job.
that our natural state of well-being is inner peace.
we must start somewhere, somehow.

happiness

 

with gratitude,
samantha

peonies and my little writer

hello my dears,

as i was writing this post my youngest daughter came in and asked to write for hello my dears.  i gladly accepted (with a smile) and would like to introduce you to Emma, a seventy-year-old soul in an eight year-old-body. here’s her first post…

did you know that flowers can make you smile? a person full of hate, if you look at a flower for some time your hate will slowly just flow away like the ocean. you should just spend more time outside,  like go on a trail and you will slowly start feeling better and your hate will go away.  don’t let the hate come back by doing trails and being outside.

with love,
emma

mckinney falls: gifts of nature

hello my dears,

we are back from our final winter camping adventure of 2017 at mckinney falls state park in austin, texas. spent three (cold) nights camping and drove home to be with our family on xmas eve. thank you mother nature for sharing with us…

the gift of compassion.

arrived and greeted by three young boys, who were our campsite neighbors, with “ching chong ching” and “hey, you pretty” remarks. it was annoying and disappointing to witness this type of ignorance, but what was even sadder was listening to the boys get cussed and yelled at by their mom and grandma for almost everything they did. usually at campsites, you meet the most chilled families yet all we could hear was screaming and ugliness. kindness and love were clearly lacking.

instead of being mad (initial feeling) at the racial remarks, i felt sad for the young boys. my usual response to this type of situation is to tell the boys immediately it’s disrespectful and that I know their mama taught them better than this! but in this situation it was different. how could they possibly give love and respect to others if they did not receive the same from their own family? what will this do to their self-esteem as they become adults? all i had the strength to do was send them strength and love from a distance. there is still so much work to do in this world for our children to grow up in a safe and loving environment.

thru the eyes of children, we learn to slow down and experience hope and pure love. at the same time, we also feel their pain if there is no love which may get passed down from one generation to the next. let it start with us now. teach compassion to our children today by being kind to ourselves first and foremost.

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the gift of family.

just the four of us, hanging outside and doing whatever we felt like. our daughters wanted to be there just as much as we did, which was a good feeling. something we tried with our kids is to not allow the word “bored” to be used. this encourages them to be comfortable to just be and use their creativity to be entertained. especially when mommy and daddy need quiet time to just relax.

an early xmas gift arrived when my husband’s cousin and his girlfriend, who lived about 40 minutes away, came by our campsite with their sweet furry friends to spend the afternoon with us. we drank wine/beer for hours, roasted corn and potatoes, stuffed our faces with smores, and enjoyed random conversations around the bonfire.

you see, just a few weeks ago my husband lost his great aunt to heart failure. she had a kind and joyful spirit that will always be with us. in these moments, we are reminded that family time is about making a little effort. that we can’t assume tomorrow, ever.

thankful for the gift of family close and far.

 

barry, rocky, and snowflake

 

the gift of calmness and beauty.

any hormonal imbalance or inner chaos we experience can’t last long with nature. personally, it’s a monthly struggle for me when my hormones go bonkers. with nature by my side, the emotional drop still exists but balanced with happy hormones when listening to onion creek flowing over limestone ledges, biking down the trails, and discovering the oldest rock shelter. ahhhhh, can’t help but to feel better when surrounded by such natural beauty and an hour of talk therapy with the hubs (poor him).

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Existence is a priceless gift and the beauties of nature are the priceless gifts of the existence! ― Mehmet Murat ildan

with gratitude,
samantha

lake somerville : nature’s beauty + gratitude

Nature’s beauty is a gift that cultivates appreciation and gratitude. – Louie Schwartzberg

 
Hello My Dears,

My wish was to experience gratitude on Thanksgiving by being close to nature and doing something different that felt real.  My 8 year old daughter shared with me, during one of our breakfast conversations, that nature already knows everything.  When the birds are chirping, they are tell us something. If we can’t understand them yet, it is ok…one day we will. I asked, what if we don’t like the sound of birds chirping? According to my daughter, it just means we are going thru something and that maybe one day we will understand that nature just wants to tell us to love and be kind.

If our families are small or even dysfunctional, we can still celebrate gratitude in small doses one day at time. It doesn’t have to be done all on one day called Thanksgiving.  Sometimes friends are our chosen family. The special friends who can see us for who we are and call bullshit when we are acting out of fear and insecurity. Of course, we have to be true to ourselves first before anyone else can be.

Favorite Moments: Thanksgiving Camping @ Lake Somerville Park

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Making smores, drinking wine, and enjoying conversations by the bonfire.
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Setting up the Thanksgiving table with the kids.
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A love for grilling.
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Best gumbo made with love by family.
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When kids can freely play and make new friends.
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One wish, to grow old together.
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Grateful for these moments with loved ones.

Trip Details:

Destination: Lake Somerville Park in Texas at Birch Creek Unit- Old Hickory, Site #78 and #80. 2 hour road trip from Houston to the campsite. Drove 60 mph or slower due to swaying pop up camper thanks to hub’s rigged bike rack. We are not doing that again.

Campsite: 3 out of 4 campsite units were closed due to the aftermath of Harvey.  Old Hickory is more private with lots of bushes and trees. It is not an open setting where you see your neighbors. Restrooms were moderately clean with warm water for showers.

People:  First time family camping trip for most. 4 -5 families with at least a dozen kids. Loved watching them freely play.

Good Eats:  Potluck with friends. Thanksgiving dinner, BBQ chicken, Gumbo, BBQ pork skewers with vermicelli noodles,  etc.

Unplugged Activities: growing old together, spending quality time with family and friends, eating all day, drinking beer and wine (15% alcohol just delicious), grilling, fishing, smores, biking, trail walking, bonfire, kids freely playing and making new friends.

Lessons Learned: no racking bikes on the back of pop up, disposable plates/utensils means less work, rain boots and gloves would be helpful if washing dishes in the cold, space heaters needed for 40 degree nights, continue to improve on packing less.

With gratitude,
Samantha

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