Learning to BE

Gracelyn sleepsGracelyn is one of the best teachers I’ve ever had (yep, even along with Mr. Maunier in grade 6, numerous college professors, and, of course other teachers who aren’t officially teachers). Among her many lessons so far is that life isn’t about DOING. As a coach I’ve often helped my clients learn more about simply being (not so simple to do for most of us) and I too have made much progress in this area during my nearly 39 years of living. Gracelyn’s lessons take this doing/being experience to a whole new level. Here are a few ways she’s been helping me learn to enjoy being and worry less about what I’m doing.

  • When she gets an inconsolable cry. I’m her momma and I want to make things better when my baby communicates her distress. At some level I too feel inconsolable until I can help her back to a place of comfort. Sometimes, however, there is nothing to do (or rather, we’ve done all we can to “fix” a situation for her), so our job is simply to be with her as she cries. This is such a hard way for me to learn and fortunately she doesn’t use this teaching method too often. 🙂
  • When my “to do” list doesn’t get much checked off. While I’ve officially made only one “to do” list in the three weeks since Gracelyn’s birth, I have had days when a list existed in my head. I took (and probably still do take) pride in “getting things done” and completing tasks in a timely fashion. Now, however, I spend hours gazing into Gracelyn’s eyes, holding her, nursing her, going on walks, attempting to learn her language, and generally being as present as I can with her. Thus, it may take 3 days to get a basket of clean laundry folded and put away. I’m okay with this change even if I haven’t yet adjusted to it.
  • When I stop, really look at Gracelyn, and take a deep breath. I nearly always cry or laugh, so great is my joy at having this blessed child in our lives. When I let go of beliefs that my worth is derived from the things I accomplish and I simply take the time to be with my daughter, I am truly fulfilled. No-thing is more important than relationships — especially this one — and my daughter is helping to ensure I remember this lesson well.

“When love beckons to you, follow him.
Though his ways are hard and steep.
And when his wings enfold you, yield to him.
Though the sword hidden among his pinions may wound you.
And when he speaks to you, believe in him.
Though his voice may shatter your dreams
as the north winds lays waste the garden.”
~ Kahlil Gibran

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10 thoughts on “Learning to BE

  1. Simone

    Shonnie,
    Your daughter is absolutely beautiful, I am so happy for the three of you!!! May she continue to teach you more everyday!
    Blessings,
    Simone

  2. Jackie

    What a beautiful message! Thanks for sharing it. There’s no more important job than BEing a parent, BEing with your daughter, BEing fully present with her…

    It might not hurt to BE fully present with Gracelyn’s dad some, too.

    Hugs to the three of you.

  3. Loyd Kinnett

    What a wonderful reminder you are. Your presence with Gracelyn is such a beautiful picture of how it is to be with one another – if we would chose to stop, breath, laugh or cry as we look and listen to one another we would surely have peace within and without.

  4. Cayanne

    Truer words were never spoke. I am still learning these lessons at 3 months and I’m sure for years to come, as I stand in awe of my little gift.

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