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Mindful Parenting Book Club Part IV - Page 3

post #41 of 207

"I was sooo angry today I cut the TV cord. "

Heather - I really hope that it was unplugged first!

{{{{{{Hugs}}}}}}}} Things are going to get better.

Was it Emerson or Whitman that said:

"When it is dark enough, you can see the stars."

You are in my thoughts right in this moment.
post #42 of 207
Thread Starter 
After I read mamakarata's post last night while I was still on-line after my post it made me realize maybe I was over-reacting. Then I read an email from a friend and it helped me too. Dh and I had a good cry earlier and we agreed to try again. I appreciate your kind words and wisdom more than you know!!!

Dh and I read the chapter in EB called, "Losing it" [temper] on Tuesday and it was helpful to us. Anger can be used as a tool to bring about change. And after yesterday I remember thinking that after another fight dh and I had a long time ago. You ladies are so smart and full of great thoughts.

It's 2am and I woke up and just couldn't go back to sleep. So I better go give it another shot.

post #43 of 207
Hi everyone!

I had checked in here a few weeks ago, said I was going to join you and checked out I have been reading the book...I find it to be very soothing to read. I don't know if any of you are familiar with the Conversations with God books but I have been reading them also and they mesh so beautifully with this book. It is amazing.

I have read through this thread and have found many wonderful insights, especially regarding the anger. I also struggle with those feelings when dd and are having a power struggle. I find it is particularly bad when I am PMSing. Really. I can get/feel mean almost. I am trying to hard to "step back" and see what is going on ~

Did anyone read the excellent article in Mothering a few months back regarding tantrums? I found it to be very helpful. I realized I don't always have to make it "better", or try to make her stop Crying because it makes me feel bad to see her cry. I just need to be present for her, speak soothingly and tell her I understand that she is hurting.

On another note, I am trying to start practicing yoga on a regular basis. The yoga tape I bought also meshed so well with this book because the instructor really focuses on the breath....always the breath...the most important part of the yoga practice. For someone like me who struggles with "breathing" from time to time due to asthma I find it to be an exceptional challenge for me. Usually when I focus on my breath it is because I am struggling to breathe....

post #44 of 207
Oh I just lost my previous post. :mad

I have a small window here so here goes again.

heather! Thanks for checking in with us so we can hold you in our thoughts during this rough patch. I'm so sorry. I have a few others thoughts but I'll send them by pm.

Isn't there something interesting in the way in which this discussion on mindfulness and intentionality in relationships has led many of us to an awareness that we need to spend less time here, to nuture those relationships? That was convoluted but it's like saying we're in the process of working ourselves out of business.

Thanks so much for that visualization, Breathe - I could've used it last night during a particularly hard 4am wake up. She just wanted to play, and at night that involves lots of standing and then falling in the general direction of my head. Ouch. I got so irrationally angry. Taking inner visual distance would have been incredibly helpful in that moment.

Sophie's first birthday is nearing (the 21st) and this has me thinking about the baby days ending, and so it's easy to enjoy/savor/ be awre of small moments, the curl of her hair, the shapr of her toenails, etc. But in spite of this gratitude I do forget about the breath, all the time, and this week I'm really trying to slow down.
It's crazy because we're on vacation this week, and still I'm rushing and anxious. Like many of you have written, when I do pay attention to the breath, I realize that I've been gulping in panicked shallow breaths for no reason. There is a change in my whole body when I slow the breathing down. My anxiety or rushed pace is probably the number one threat to my relationship w/dh. He is so conscious of how his negatively impacts us, and I want to live differently with him and with all of the relationships in my life.

One other thought on breath: I have peace activist friends who when charged by the governement with "conspiracy" (planning together) for some action or another, will talk about the work of con-spir-acy: breathing-with (conith, spir:breath). We do tap into a powerful unity as human sisters and brothers when we breathe together, at a communal sitting meditation for instance. I have these bizarre little mental images sometimes, and one of them is of world leaders sitting on mats breathing together for an hour. After the tolling of the bell to end the session, wouldn't it be harder to harbor mistrust and emnity for one another?

That's it for now.

post #45 of 207
I also have a lot of anger about this potential war, which might be a fear of powerlessness pr the fear of injustice or senseless death, but that's a fear to listen to and to act upon. It's an example where I feel the sovereignty of many is at risk. So there's some complicated calculus that distinguishes the two, no?
that is a good and complicated issue to think about. and it's along the lines of our fears behind others (such as SO's handling of the children) where there is more than one person's sovereignty at risk.

the war issue is big, and on my mind a lot. i wanted to share what i realize it has been doing to me. after i sign petitions, forward emails, and talk to anyone who's interested, i realize how little power i have over the outcome` and the only place i find peace is in the moment.

otherwise i will get scared.

i have this feeling of (not hopelessness- and not helplessness) but a general want to get all i can from my life, my children, my relationship with my dh. and even my work. i love all of them.

(sorry to sound so sickeningly optimistic- ours is not a perfect utopia), but when i think of something so completely out of my control, but for the tiny little affect i have among my small circle of people - i am brought back to the pricelessness and rarity of each moment.

in that, i find the only gift possible from war or it's immenince- and that is, my family. my life.

i find that when i do honestly think/feel from this perspective, the things that usually concern me, seem to fall away. even the situation of dh's handling of my ds or dd (which i rarely have a concern with) but realize it is a common concern among many.

the modeling of our behavior from this perspective cannot help but affect the rest of the family, so that even that issue can potentially fall away.

i am hoping this post finds everyone breathing, loving, laughing and enjoying life.

fear is the last fortress that seperates us from our true selves
post #46 of 207
do you ever notice a connection between when you are angry and "mindlessness"?
iguanavere- yes. your observation is great. i am re- reading the Practice as Culivation chapter- this weeks discussion- , and realizing the connection to this.

nuggetsmom- your wedding story made me laugh. and good for you in getting up to do your meditation!

deidre- how is the yoga going? it sounds like you were making headway into the breathing concept with it.

Isn't there something interesting in the way in which this discussion on mindfulness and intentionality in relationships has led many of us to an awareness that we need to spend less time here, to nuture those relationships?
mamabutterfly- yes it is interesting. i was talking to dh about that thought. we remembered what we liked about going to and having small dinner parties where there was a lot of new and stimulating conversationsj, and how it was fun to share about conversations we had seperate at the party and discuss it. - we can't do that so much now until ds gets a little more socially acceptable IYKWIM

for us, i think our posting boards have sort of become that. we spent all day yesterday going to the ocean and then doing errands, and talked about our posting board experience. it was fun. he is so into discussing politics, i am glad he has that outlet. and while he is interested in my book, he is much happier with me summarizing different concepts i have grasped.

anyway- back to this weeks discussion. "Practice as Cultivation"

my only thought so far was that when i am feeling particulary weak in my practice, i imagine a person who i respect and who respects me- someone i would never want to disappoint, and act as if they are in the room with me.

suddenly my behavior becomes very obvious. if i am so "mindless" and struggling with the core of my problem, a third party perspective helps me at times.

you know when you read or watch something with someone else? and how suddenly you are noticing things differently? it relates to that concept i think.

oh, and heather- i hope all is well with you. i am so glad to read that you and dh are hanging in there. take care!
post #47 of 207
Thread Starter 
Hi! This is the 1st time I've been able to get on since this weekend...Database Error message again.

Thanks, Mamakarata for getting us to the next chapter in the book..."Practice as Cultivation." I liked your idea about pretending someone else is in the room. Yeah, my attitude and mindfulness would be so different!! Thanks for the tip. I will try to remember that with dh and ds.

I gotta go!

post #48 of 207
I am having a hard time logging on and posting here so I have not been able to do much. I have to go now...

more later
post #49 of 207
i too am having major problems getting in to post or even view any discussions on mb. i think their server is having problems.

thought i was alone for awhile there!

hopefully it will become more stable and we can resume. take care all.

post #50 of 207
Thread Starter 
Maybe they are upgrading the server. That would be so awesome. I'll try to find out and letcha know.

Here's what I found out about the database error we kept getting this week:

Originally posted by Cynthia Mosher
We completed the server upgrade in one day but a couple of days later began to have problems with the boards. The website was okay but the boards had a database problem - a crashed table that needed repairing. That was finally accomplished today and as soon as we had the board back up and running we grinded to a halt and the entire site crashed. Host says we had exceeded our memory. But that should have been an impossibility since we had just upgraded. Anyway, after our webmama Laura gave them an earful they increased our allowance and rebooted. So we *should* be okay now.

It's been a long few days trying to get everything fixed and fixed for us. Thanks for your support and encouragement. I received many pleasant "Love MDC!" emails which made all the difference.
quote is from this thread: Apparently it wasn't supposed to take so long and they mentioned the server switch on a thread last week. I'm glad that's all it was so it seems we should be o.k. now.
post #51 of 207
Thread Starter 
Good golly!! I just read the posts I missed while I was on retreat and I am sooo impressed with all the thinking you all did here. I'm still trying to process my thoughts about my anger. I think I need some serious counseling though. Sometimes I get so bent out of shape and have a serious meltdown if things don't go my way. And other times I am o.k. I guess it just depends on the day. inky

Also, welcome to DiaperDiva and Deirdre(~hi, again). I said hi to Iguanavere b4 my retreat started. It's neat that you 3 decided to join us.

Mamakarata, thanks so much for all your insights to the group! And no you aren't talking too much. You're posts are very helpful to me.

Breathe, you did great last week by letting the anger discussion flow. I was not too inspired by the Breathing chapter either. But it was helpful to me anyway. I thought everyone had neat ideas about their anger. I'm new to "anger" analysis so I don't have much to add.

Also, I have been trying not to spend so much time on MDC and trying to spend time with dh and ds instead. I think it's part of trying to cultivate my mindfulness practice. I hope we don't work ourselves out of business here, b/c I do get a lot out of what is discussed here. But it's like a catch 22. When I'm here [MDC], I'm not Here[in the moment I'm lost in thought and not always available to ds and dh cuz I'd rather be here(MDC) sometimes ].

I liked the idea of naming a moment we conquered recently. I was very tickled with nuggetsmom's post and moment! And Breathe's moment of looking down on her situation and then on the world was very cool! I will try that along with the third person in the room.

Peace to you all! Has anyone read this chapter yet (Practice as Cultivation)? I need to read it again...and again...and again...and again...it will take me years to retain this stuff.
post #52 of 207
Thread Starter 
I should be in bed but I'm not sleepy!! Ugggg! So here's a neat link I found on Mothering.com:

Parental Anger: Mindfulness and Letting Go~~By Alisa J. Holleron http://www.mothering.com/15-0-0/html/15-2-0/anger.shtml
post #53 of 207

Re: I'm new to the group!

Finally found my way over here...thanks, mamakarata! Got a little behind due to the move, will start with page 110 tomorrow at nap time.

Ah, good to be back.

Iguanavere, welcome!
post #54 of 207
Originally posted by nuggetsmom
Last night as I put her to bed, I really tried to have an open mind about what was going to happen. I really tried to stay in the moment - I meant to bathe her, bt she wasn't into it. NO problem. She was really crying, yet not wanting to be held, and I was just there and supposrtive and letting her have her feelings (of tiredness, and sickness and general malaise) and finally she crawled in my lap and nursed to sleep. I really feel like it was a mindful, being there and in the moment on my part.

Great work, Jacq! I am learning to do exactly this kind of thing from the wise mamas here. Meg has been crying to sleep a lot lately (as I hold her in our family bed) and it was just making me crazy trying to figure out how to fix it. But I just backed off the fixing need, held her, let her burn her energy or whatever it was she needed to do. Sure enough, she is crying less and less the last few nights, and tonight not at all.
post #55 of 207
Originally posted by Curly Locks
But do people that had parents that didn't show anger, or weren't angry in general, get angry? Maybe their parent's reactions to frustrations are different than people that did have visually angry parents with poor coping skills. I

My issues with anger are kind of opposite. I had to learn, as and adult and with the help of a therapist, to get angry. In my house growing up, the only one allowed to be angry was my dad, and he was (is) all the time. It was bad news for anyone else to presume to express anger so I stopped at a very young age. I used to pride myself as a younger adult on the fact that I didn't get angry. Then I learned that it was a bad way to be.
post #56 of 207
Originally posted by Mamaste
I think it's important to remember that labelling emotions and reactions isn't always a positive thing. Being angry isn't always bad, just as feeling intense love for something or someone isn't always good. The emotions themselves are just states. It's what we do with them that shows our mettle.

When I started therapy I had a "good" or "bad" label for every emotion. I learned from aforementioned therapist that, "Emotions are not good or bad, they just are. The actions you take as a result are good or bad."
post #57 of 207
Originally posted by mamabutterfly
Exhaustion is really such a strong factor on state of mind. It has helped me to just remember that within the sleep deprivation it *is* okay to just focus on being-with my tiredness, to be awre and name it and watch the emotions that come up in me as a result.

Keeping up with my own emotional temperature, especially by journaling, prayer, yoga, and talking nightly with dh, usually helps me to recognize my patterns. I am more likely to feel frustration when I am tired. So when I am giving voice to my tiredness, I can be vigilant for the cranky feelings that might make me less paitent with Sophie. I can ask for that extra support for her.

All right, all right, I'll go to bed! (DH and DD both went to sleep early tonight and I was THRILLED to have the last two hours to myself, don't want it to end). I'm up way too late and don't want to be cranky with Meg tomorrow.
post #58 of 207
I am so impressed with your retreat. Really Iam. I am not dissapointed int you at all. Do you see the realizations you have made. There were no mistakes! Just learning experiences. It is hard to meditate, alone or together. And I hope that you will both be able to use the anger and fighting as a springboard for growth. The discussion between you two will ultimately help you get closer. But maybe you need help to get there, and that is fine. Get help. And if you can't right now, realize that we are sending you good vibes and loving you just the way you are.

DH and I are in a phase now where we are acting like roommates. We pass each other through the house, but either he or I have a lot of work to do. He has school till late. I go to yoga once a week, and I go to bed early, he goes late. Like ships passing in the wind. It needs to stop, and the TV does not even figure into it except that it is the gfavortie thing for me to argue about. Maybe I should just drop it. I know the prevailing attitude here is that it is evil, but I am perhaps giving the TV too much power. I let IT make me angry. DH likes to watch TV, and that is his prerogative (sp????) I have realized what a waste of my life TV is, though I do enjoy a show now and then (Yes, I watch friends. When I move in next door, we can watch together Breathe ) Anyway, I can't make that realization for DH, and if I force the issue, I am just creating discord between us, so it is counterproductive....

This reminded me that DH and I sometimes use our email to communicate difficult things and feelings because it gives us a moment to realise how we sound before we say it. I know it sounds weird, but sometimes writing letters to each other is a better way to communicat a topic that tends to get overheated. In moments like that it is easy to get stubborn and not be open to both sides of the argument anymore. I find that writing then gives me an opportunity to think how my "voice" sound before it is heard. (and then I use my journal to write the ansty things I want to say to get them out of my head)

OK, Breathe asked if the buddha would never get angry and the closest I have found to an answer is that one of the precepts (guidelines to live by I guess) states "not being angry". This threw me for a loop, because I thought there could be no way to be human and never get angry! Buddha must never have had a toddler!
But what I think it means is that you don't stay angry,a nd you don't suppress your anger either. You acknowledge your anger, and the feelings out of which it arose and all that stuff, and let it go again. Something like that. I think if I were a good Zen buddist I would be able to elaborate more and I will ask my Zen group about this too since it is occupying my thoughts a lot.

OK, I will be back later. I was sooooo frustrated when I couldn't get on to MDC this weekend because I had allo sorts of things to say. Now they are gone sort of... Oh well
post #59 of 207
Just a quick hello to the new faces and sending a hug to heather and mr. heather. we're all living the full catastrophe, aren't we?

mamakarata - maybe you're right to see a silver lining in today's anxiety. I find that I can't be fully present in the news of the world, but tend to shrink my sphere a little bit and focus on us, the family and what we're doing. maybe that's about being in the present. but most times i feel like i need to be doing more about this large sphere (even if it doesn't feel like i have much influence). i wonder where that "should" comes from.

and i think that all groups ebb and flow and that the insights we have shared and developed will last a lifetime b/c they are based in real life experiences of people that we've gotten to know, not booksense and for that i'm grateful. not that i think the group will fade but maybe it's role in our lives will change. another thing that might equalize things for me is to bring this discussion from the group back to my family (which I haven't done b/c like Jacqueline I don't feel like i have much time with dh). that might make it a support line rather than an escape route though it's probably both.

off to read about practice....

post #60 of 207
Thread Starter 
{ Lurking and feeling from this place, really busy today...be back after I read this chapter...hopefully tomorrow. }

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