Q&A with Luminous Youth

What is something you wish you knew before having children, that you definitely know now. (February 2019)

Erica:

To know thyself.

I was raised by a culture that congratulated me on my ability to mimic fashion, regurgitate information, to conform to others rules and to express only parts of myself that others were deemed “acceptable”.

I mastered these things quite well and was left feeling like there was a gaping hole in my heart. 

Motherhood forced me to look at that hole. To understand what it was from. When I tried to impose these cultural beliefs i was raised with onto my children it challenged me to my core. It felt so deeply wrong.

I have spent a good part of my parenting getting to know and trust myself and my intuition. I spent a good part of my childhood closing that down.

So the biggest influence I have in my parenting is this experience. 

Giving my children the space to get to know and trust themselves to the best of my ability is the underlying all energy in all the decisions I consciously make.

It’s not so much that I wish I knew this, as all is revealed in the perfect moment,  but I can clearly see how it would make parenting and partnering so much more effective if we entered these journeys with a healthy knowledge and trust in ourselves.

Paul:

I feel I was pretty fortunate before I became a true parent. Delving into ‘step-parenting’ three kids between the ages of 6-11 was an immense undertaking and reality check about what parenting was, the energy it required, the upside-down house you live in at times and many more bits and bobs. Erica also gave me some very handy insights into the changes that would occur and one thing I can’t tell enough new-to-be-fathers is that your relationship with your partner basically starts again when you have kids, and so it should. I think this did myself and Erica’s relationship immense benefit.

Something that I didn’t know before, that now being a parent I truly know now is how humbling an experience it is and how powerful a self-learning path it can be – as long as you reflect often and admit your limitations that is. The things I’ve learnt about myself over the past 6 years, parenting a new born (now 3) and step-parenting three kids has been immense. The way these wise little teachers trigger your patience without trying to, the love they expect at the most challenging of times, the patience they require when you are tired and exhausted and the fears they bring to the surface by simply being humans in your care are constant and powerful. They really are amazing teachers and gosh when you watch your mind – you really begin to see yourself, your conditioning and your limitations! 

I’m able to witness where I can work on loving more. I really wish to be a wonderful role model and the best I can be for these kids and the constant reflection and immense energy (plus accepting all my faults) allows me constantly step forward into being a greater human – and well, to be honest I didn’t realise parenthood would thrust you into this so powerfully!

What are your biggest parenting challenges right now? (Jan 2019)

Erica:

I’m challenged with having and homeschooling children of such differing ages. Four children between 3-16 yrs bends my mind a lot. My three year old daughter needs gentle presence where I am needing to access the imaginal realms and hold space from there. Whereas my older children, 11-16 yrs, require a very embodied energy of holding space for their growth and learning.

The logistics of their classes and their actual home learning is so full and complicated that is asks me to snap out of this present imaginal space with my toddler and become logical. 

This has created some friction and tension for all as I’ve struggled to navigate this with grace at times. 
I’m learning that organisation is the key. I’ve been quite free flowing in my parenting thus far and being a dreamy person I’ve loved that. 

But parenting within this new dynamic is teaching me how to be in two worlds simultaneously. It’s asking me to strengthen the masculine action side of myself which is perfect timing. 
While my ability to access the unseen realms is strong. My ability to actually bring my learnings through into the 3D and actually do something tangible with it needs development. 

As always my children are guiding me through my struggles and discomfort on how to strengthen this and I’m learning through them new skills and ways of being. 

Paul:

My biggest challenge right now is to always remember to see situations through the eyes of my child and step-children and not get frustrated when they don’t meet my ‘adult (silly!!) expectations’.

I need to remember that kids are often in a flow-state when undertaking their creative and homeschooling activities and that makes doing logical things like putting things away or off the middle of the walkway irrelevant to them, and then often it gets forgotten about.

I need to remember that everyone is doing their best to remember and that all these children are so well-intentioned that they simply forgot – and therefore my frustration is my own attachment to a preconceived expectation.

I’m often challenged in my own mind whether to say anything or just clean it up myself. It’s something that I’m not consistent with and probably should figure out in my head and then just act one way or the other.

I must say however, that I have definitely improved in this space. Five years ago coming from a house with just me in it to welcoming in a ready made, 3 homeschool-kids-family pressed my ‘organised home’ buttons a lot but now my responses to the above are sooo much better! I’m learning woo hoo!

These little teachers making me see my attachments each and every day for which I am grateful.

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