After my blog on honesty yesterday I came across this quote from Ghandi. This is a tough one to accept and really hit home for me.
How many times do we let other people’s needs or opinions get in the way of us being who we truly choose to be?
I can remember many years ago when I first wanted to be vegetarian I ate vegetarian at home but not if I was invited to a friend’s house. I didn’t want to cause my friends any trouble. When I got lots of meat on my plate I simply passed it to my husband when the host wasn’t looking. Problem solved I thought until the day Alf said “Enough” . He went on to say he had no problem with me choosing to be veggie but he would no longer eat any meat that our friends gave to me. If I wanted to be veggie, he said, tell everyone. It seems strange now to think I needed courage to do that but way back then vegetarianism was not so popular and vegetarians were considered a bit odd. So why was I eating meat at my friends house but not at home? Was the reason that I genuinely did not want to trouble them or was the reason that I secretly worried about what they would think of me? Well probably a bit of both but more so the latter if I am honest.
I also can remember the first time someone told me I was psychic. As my Mum had passed when I was 6 and I had talked to her all my life it wasn’t really a great surprise. I wanted a better connection with her. I wanted to talk to other family members in spirit but I was frightened to think I could do it. I was even more frightened to tell anyone else what I was thinking. Alf was very sceptical about all this stuff and hated any sort of self growth or spiritual books in the house. He hated crystals and gem stones and incense burners. He also had a very pre-concieved idea of what a psychic would look like, not like me that is for sure. He definitely would not be impressed if his wife turned out to be psychic. So what did I do? I hid the books. I secretly had ‘lessons’ from a psychic friend to help me develop my skills and I practiced healing on my horses when no one else was around.
I was running Holly Tree Horse Riding School at the time and it surprised me to realise that the children who were helping at the yard were starting to see the world through my eyes. They believed that when a horse died it’s soul lived on, they believed in the energy link between animals and humans, they took on my values. They did all of this by osmosis simply because they spent time with me. The power of all that was shocking at first and what would their parents think? I didn’t want anyone to think I was trying to brain wash their children.
And then I realised the children kept coming to the yard each week and no parent had ever complained. Furthermore the children were learning to treat each other and the horses with a great deal of respect. They were learning to be responsible. They had to be honest because they knew I would ask them to leave if I found out otherwise. Yes there were a few squabbles but my spiritual way of life, my truth, my values was actually influencing these children in a good way. How interesting that I was more honest in front of the Holly Tree kids than I was with my husband!
In the ten years since I got divorced I thought a lot about who I am. Yes I am spiritual. Yes I talk to Angels. Yes I believe in a vegan diet. Yes I believe in recycling and buying products that are not harmful to the environment. Is Alf on board with all this? No not really but he is respectful of my beliefs as I am of his. Neale Donald Walsh says “My way is not the way it is just one way”. As a Parent you have probably heard more than your fair share of parenting advice from all sorts of people. My guidance here is to listen to what people say but if it doesn’t resonate with you don’t take the advice and this includes anything that I might say. Always be ready to hear new ideas, different perspectives but then make your own choice. You don’t need to justify your choices but for your children’s sake don’t hide them either.
So what do you believe in that you do not do?
Where is someone else’s opinion holding you back?
What would you change about the way you parent if you knew no one would criticise you?