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15.01.2020 10:24
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The Test Family Articles | December 19 Authentic Manny Machado Jersey , 2002
The ... Iris? 2002?The ... dear octopus from whose ... we never quite escape nor, in our inmost hearts, ever quite wish to?. Dodie SmithAs I reflect on the week I spent with my f


The Test
Helaine Iris
? 2002

?The family?that dear octopus from whose tentacles we never quite escape nor, in our inmost hearts Authentic Wil Myers Jersey , ever quite wish to?. Dodie Smith

As I reflect on the week I spent with my family celebrating the holiday season I am awed and humbled by the precarious balance of emotions when family comes together. I was looking forward to my parents, children and extended family gathering at my newly renovated home to spend a few days of laughter, connection and great food.

My parents came a few days earlier than the rest of the gang. It had been a while since we?d seen each other. I have a close relationship with my parents and I was excited to be with them.

We spent the first few days together happily catching up, laughing and thoroughly enjoying each other. Amidst the sweetness of the visit I remembered a quote I once heard by Ram Dass who said something to the effect of Authentic Rollie Fingers Jersey , ?If you want to find out how evolved you are, spend a week with your parents?. It made me wonder how I would pass the test.

Predictably, at around day three the ice began to wear thin. Suddenly the familiar family dynamics began to show their first signs, particularly with my mother. She and I Authentic Dave Winfield Jersey , both bright women, who have each done lots of inner work, began to subtly play out our ?roles? with each other. Before I knew it I turned into the struggling to be a grown up kid full of reaction, and her Authentic Tony Gwynn Jersey , the afraid to let go mother full of control and fear. Yikes.

It was stressful and I could feel my energy draining; yet I got caught up in the busyness and fun of the rest of the family arriving and didn?t deal with the underlying, growing feelings of frustration.

Then there were the amazing moments. Three generations of women in the kitchen preparing dinner. My mother, my daughter and myself tied together by birth, all engaged in a dance of past and present Trevor Hoffman Jersey , tied to our roles yet curious and exploring who we all are as women in the world. I was witnessing the family legacy; I wondered how was I doing with my daughter, will she feel the same inner conflict with me when she is grown?

The visit had come to its end. In the last bittersweet hour we were together my mother and I hit an iceberg. We had a difficult interaction that we couldn?t quite resolve before she had to leave. It felt like a bucket of cold water got thrown on an essentially successful visit.

They were gone; I was left feeling not very evolved at all. How was it that with all I know I couldn?t have created a different experience for myself? I couldn?t let it go, hours later I was still stewing and feeling like I had really failed Ram Dass?s test.

I knew I had to take responsibility for what I was feeling and call my mother. I took a deep breath and picked up the phone.

After an awkward beginning my mother and I were able to communicate about what had happened. We acknowledged what we both were feeling and were each able to take responsibility for our part. Toward the end of the conversation she asked me how we could make sure this wouldn?t happen between us again.

In responding to her question the lesson of this experience became crystal clear to me.

It occurred to me that we COULDN?T make sure that it wouldn?t ever happen again. Despite all the learning and best intentions chances are we will get caught up in the same old same old.

This was actually a comforting thought. Perhaps, the best we could hope for is HOW we would respond when it DID happen again.

There is a powerful distinction between reacting and responding. Reacting often feels emotional Randy Jones Jersey , unconscious, and out of control. Responding on the other hand comes from awareness. Having the ability to choose how you wish to engage in whatever situation life presents.

What if you could unlearn the behavior that keeps you stuck in reaction and discover new skills that could improve your relationships? How might your life be different?

Here are some ideas to practice that will help build your ability to respond:

1. Become curious about what is underneath your reaction. Is it fear? Anger? How old is it? What might you need to do in order to take care of the real issue?

2. Act sooner. Don?t let feelings build into resentments. Head things off before they?re huge.

3. Communicate. Let the person know what?s coming up for you.

4. Don?t blame. Intend to see how you can use whatever is happening for your own evolution.

5. Make agreements. Create a safe space for yourself to maximize your success.

This experience has helped me embrace rather than resist this ageless dynamic with my mother. I am truly looking forward to our next visit as an opportunity to practice responding with greater awareness.

Now, when I reflect back on the Ram Dass test, I can honestly say?after all Rickey Henderson Jersey , I didn?t do too badly.

It?s your life?imagine the possibilities


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