Parenthood is an ever-evolving journey filled with beautiful moments, unexpected challenges, and valuable lessons. As parents, we strive to foster strong connections with our children, understanding their emotions and supporting them through every step of their growth.
I was at a pop-up event two weekends ago, leaving my husband and two boys to spend the day together. With a birthday party planned, I was confident they would have a fun-filled day. However, when I returned home, and as soon as my little one saw me, I encountered an unexpected situation. My youngest son started to have a meltdown, seemingly overwhelmed with emotions.
A Moment of Reflection:
Initially, my instinct was to get upset or frustrated, but something inside me prompted a different approach. I decided to pause, leaving my meal on the table untouched. Then I took my son to bed. This simple act of holding him and creating a calm space opened the door for a powerful revelation.
The Magic of Asking "What Happened?":
As my son continued to cry, I hugged and kissed him like I always do, but after several minutes without results, I accidentally asked, "What happened?" aloud. To my surprise, my little one began sharing his story through tears. It turned out that during the birthday party at the jumping house, his best friend had treated him unkindly, leaving him feeling hurt and questioning their friendship. He was holding those emotions all day until he saw me.
The Lesson Learned:
My heart melted. I realized that instead of assuming my son was tired or unable to express his feelings, I needed to create a safe space for him to share his experiences openly. After listening carefully, I explained to him that his friend's behavior might have been influenced by other factors, emphasizing that friendships can have ups and downs. We discussed how we all have moments when we struggle to express ourselves or make good choices.
The Power of Connection:
Since that day, my approach to meltdowns has changed; well, it looks like it is constantly evolving. Rather than only being available and supporting my son with his emotions, I ask, "What happened?" This simple question has become a catalyst for profound conversations. It has empowered my son to communicate his feelings and experiences, fostering a deeper connection between us. We now have the opportunity to discuss the situations that upset him, learn from them, and grow together.
The Journey to Be Awake:
I just read from the book "The Awakened Family" that our children are our "Awakeners." I agree. My love for my boys had always pushed me to question how "I thought it should be" versus how I feel closer and more available to them.
Parenthood is an ever-evolving journey. As we figure out one aspect, new challenges arise, reminding us to stay adaptable and aware. The experience I shared is a powerful reminder of the importance of conscious parenting.
As parents, we strive to foster strong connections with our children, understanding their emotions and supporting them through every step of their growth. Mukupati, a high-end, child-centered, and culturally-forward brand, shares this vision by providing sustainable and ethically made clothing that allows parents to be closer and connected to their kids through their most important milestones: Potty training, child development, and sleep time.