Saturday, November 11, 2006
The real person you are is revealed in the moments when you're certain no other person is watching. When no one is watching, you are driven by what you expect of yourself.
Ralph S. Marston, Jr.
Saturday Cuppa: Nettle Tea ~ have to say, I really love this stuff!
Peeking out the bathroom window last Sunday, I watched the girls help Paul move and stack firewood. Not deterred by the cold weather, they were a bundle of energy and happiness. Paul is very hands on with the girls, always has been, and even though I’m used to watching them interact, somehow I’m always moved to tears when I watch them silently from a distance. He has all the qualities a child needs in a dad. Someone who can provide love, warmth, understanding, care, empathy and fun. And yet he’s also able to provide boundaries.
Kids need dads.
Let me be clear before I’m inundated with emails from single or lesbian mums. I’m not anti alternative family structures regardless of whether they were created by choice or circumstance. I do believe, however, that all children benefit from a positive, ongoing male influence. I also acknowledge that not all biological fathers are suitable for day to day child rearing. If we look to the Universal Energy though, it is full of yin and yang, male and female, feminine and masculine. Why would family life be any different?
I often wonder how I’d fill a lack of fathering if our circumstances were different.
The relationship we have with our father impacts us so strongly right through into our adult years. We need to be clear though that the father-child relationship wears many faces. These include fathers absent through death, work, geography, alcohol or drugs, affairs. Even if they’re not with us, we still have a relationship, albeit an apparently silent one.
Some women try and make up for this by being mother and father. This is noble, but not really what we’re meant to do. Mothers and mothers. And frankly, most of us a stretched enough without trying to do even more!
When I watch Bethany and Eliza and Paul interacting, with me physically out of the picture, I am in awe that they’ve got such a dad. I wonder how different I might have been as a person with such an influence throughout my childhood. I don’t suppose the girls will ever really appreciate what they’ve had, and what they’ve got, however my wish is that they if, and when, they attract a life partner that person is able to bring them as much joy and love into their life as their father has brought to mine.
Another special moment for me this week happened yesterday when Paul and Eliza went out for the afternoon. Bethany was going through her Red Box (see an earlier blog on holistic menstruation) and asking all sorts of questions about periods. It’s so funny what you take for granted when you bleed each month and have been doing so for 23 years!
After a few hours she gave me a huge hug and said , “Thanks so much mum, no other mother would have said all those things!”
I laughed and said that actually lots of mums would. It did have me reflecting though on the majority of my school friends who weren’t told a thing about periods. On the day of their first bleed they thought they were dying! Although I understand they were different times, it seems so cruel to not share such information. I also realise how important it is that women keep sharing their menstruation, birth, breastfeeding and menopause stories so that our children know everything about how the body works.
I remember one of my brothers, as a young adult, thinking that all women bled on the 28th day of every month rather than every 28 days!
The next special thing in my week is happening this morning. My elder sister Heidi has returned to the UK after a year or so in Australia. She’s coming for the weekend with her husband and youngest child, Matteus. The girls are so excited about seeing their cousin again. So, I’ve got to get off the computer and get to tidying the house. Visitors are always a good incentive for removing cobwebs!!
Don't forget to acknowledge the special moments in your week...they're like stars in the sky! ~ Veronika ~
If you missed the Extraordinary Breastfeeding documentary back in February, it is being re-screened on Monday night (ie, November 13th, 11pm on Channel Four).