I had given a friend a ride home from our women's circle, and she was telling me how excited and ready she is to have children. I was telling her about the work I am doing with Hand In Hand and how it has really been a lifesaver for the challenging times I've had with parenting. She said, “Wow, you must be a great mom!” I kind of laughed and said after a pause, “Sometimes.”
On the ride home, I thought about how I responded and realized that it wasn't very accurate. What I meant to say was, “I never stop trying.”
When I got home, my husband asked me about my night. I told him about the comment my friend had made and my response. When I said, “I never stop trying” to Tony, it triggered all this emotion and I just started sobbing. I expressed how much I love my two children, and how I'm always thinking about how I can be a better mother. I just want what is best for them as individuals, siblings, in our family, and in the world. I sobbed and sobbed. My husband just listened and I saw tears start to roll down his cheeks.
I have never been able to put into words how I feel. It seemed inconceivable how I could express so much love. Afterward, I felt like a great mother. I appreciated my husband’s patience, time and his presence while he listened to me. I felt deeply connected for being heard.
Because I’m doing Listening Partnerships pretty regularly now, I'm listening more and more to my wisdom, checking in to see if my words are in alignment with what I feel. I'm trusting myself to feel and express. And I see that expressing has an impact on others.
My husband said he felt like the universe opened up for him in a way he had never seen before. I felt his love and appreciation. I loved and appreciated myself. I have been more kind and gentle with myself when I am having a hard day parenting now, and I’m using more laughter and play to connect with my children.
–a mother in San Francisco