When parenting special needs children, there are five primary ways that your ego can leave you sidelined in struggle.
1. You find yourself continually yearning for some other reality to be present in your life. Your mind is perpetually preoccupied with various missing elements of life and those missing elements leave you feeling chronically dissatisfied and deprived.
2. Your ego has you enmeshed in blurred boundaries with your child’s energy system, as it pushes you to take ownership for your child’s path. You find yourself either scrambling to micromanage the outcomes or you swoop in to rescue your child from a circumstance that he or she has created.
3. Your ego has you suppress your pain by denying it, masking it and avoiding it. Your ego has you intellectualize your pain; anything but actually taking the time to feel your uncomfortable feelings.
4. Your ego pushes you to “feed the energy of the extremes.” Your ego has you lost in addictive patterns, such as overworking, overachieving and overcommitting. Your fear-based ego does not support you in recognizing when enough is enough. When you are unceasingly racing ahead trying to secure the next objective, you aren’t truly present for the magical moments that are potentially right in front of you.
5. Your ego has you ignore and discount your own multifaceted needs that impact you on an intellectual, emotional, social, spiritual and physical level.
So let’s flesh these points out a bit more.
It’s been 2500 years since Buddha taught that non-attachment ends all suffering and yet most humans remain attached to what they don’t have in their lives. Your mind obsesses upon destination happiness; the idea that in order for you to be happy your child has to attain a prescribed set of objectives or the classroom environment has to function in a prescribed sort of way or your significant other has to show up to the relationship behaving in an expected manner, to name some examples.
Your mind goes into its list of must-have thoughts about what should happen in the future. Once that dynamic occurs, your ego has taken you into the trap of conditional happiness, which immediately disempowers you. Yearning is an unconscious feeling of lack that is rooted in the following belief: “I’m afraid that no matter what I do, I won’t get what I want.”
The very act of wanting creates a separation between you and your desires, which energetically pushes your desires further and further away from you. Yearning attracts its vibrational match, more lack and scarcity, accompanied by feelings of deprivation and desperation. As you imbue your efforts with stress, strain and struggle, this wall of separation, termed yearning, actually denies you the superabundance of the universe.
What Is The Antidote?
One antidote for yearning is surrender. Are you open to discovering the unwrapped present embedded in the present moment? Can you make peace with the fact that you are exactly where you need to be, doing exactly what you need to be doing for your highest good, even when it doesn’t feel good? For you know that in a perfectly evolving universe, it cannot be any other way. (Self-Mastery: A Journey Home To Your Inner Self by Joseph Hu Dalconzo) When you surrender to what is as is, you let go of trying to force the Universe to move in your own predetermined way and instead trust that the infinite correlation of details are being arranged for everyone’s highest good.
Enmeshed Energetic Boundaries
Your objective is to be passionate about your parenting journey while remaining dispassionate about any so-called parenting rewards. It’s not healthy to give away your own energy in service to your child. Falling into the quicksand of merely tolerating or reacting to your child’s less than perfect behavior or, on the other hand, compensating for your child’s challenging behaviors by fixing, hovering, and appeasing your child does not benefit anyone. It’s important to realize that no matter how your child presents in a physical body, he assuredly possesses his own internal anchors that invariably lead him in the right spiritual direction.
What Is The Antidote?
Holding space allows you to enter into interactions with your child with a neutral and open stance. You are able to witness your child’s process without needing anything in particular to happen. Instead, you make it a practice to consistently attend to your own needs so that you are able to show up to the relationship embodying the fullest version of yourself. You are then in a position to accompany your child to an undisclosed destination, without judging his stops along the way. You recognize that your caring presence is of more value than all of your attempts to rush in and impose solutions.
Avoiding Your Pain
This culture conditions everyone to avoid pain. There are two ways to process discomfort -- through feeling your body sensations in present time so that you can release dense energy or by repressing your feelings with thoughts. When your mind has you over identify with your parenting drama, by wearing your pain as a badge of honor, you are navigating the long path. Additionally, your ego may push you into addictive behaviors in order to numb your pain. None of these avoidance measures are helping you live your best life.
, What Is The Antidote?
When you recognize that your uncomfortable feelings are Divine messages that show you your lack of alignment with your highest truth, you will then be able to tune into the wisdom in your body. Next, you will be able to course correct by taking aligned actions that support you in creating more grace and ease in your life. It’s important to recognize that you can only heal what you are ready and willing to feel. If you do not give yourself the grace to slow down enough to honor that process, you will be creating from a template that has you replay your painful dynamics again and again and again. Validating your feelings, as you uncover what is anchored to your pain, will help you release what is holding you back from your full powers. By tapping on key acupressure points in the body, you can more easily release those uncomfortable energies and input affirmative intentions.
Feeding The Energy Of The Extremes
Does you Ego drive you to be the perfect Mom? Are you overcompensating for what you didn’t receive in your own childhood? Does your ego have you running without relief on the hamster wheel of life? Do you feel that no matter how much you do or to what degree you do it, you are still falling short of your own standards? Is your home life inseparable from your work life? Are you constantly monitoring the reactions of other people, most especially the authority figures who wield some type of influence over your child? Overdoing, overachieving, and over caring at the expense of yourself disconnects you from your higher powers and robs you of the joy that you so deserve.
What Is The Antidote?
Beginning today, set an intention that you will live the path of holistically balanced motherhood. You hold the power to no longer allow your ego to take you into chronic deprivation, as you chase unrealistic and unattainable standards. Give yourself permission to make mistakes and tackle some tasks in an acceptably average manner. Remember to value your own wants, needs and desires. Your needs are not optional luxuries; they are in fact requirements that support thriving and resiliency. These principles dovetail quite nicely with the last point: discounting your own needs.
Discounting Your Own Needs
You are not required to enter into long-term deficit in order to meet your child’s needs. It’s time to put your needs for self-care, self-nurturing, self-compassion, emotional first-aid and meeting your emotional dependency needs front and center.
What Is The Antidote?
It’s essential to make sure that you are at the top of your own list! You won’t be able to sustain meeting your child's multifaceted needs, unless you are willing to first and foremost meet your own complex needs. You are the only one who can vote consistently on your own behalf!
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Karen Hasselo is a passionate advocate for empowering individuals on their personal growth journey. With a wealth of experience and knowledge, she shares valuable insights and guidance through her blog, inspiring positive transformation and well-being.