If you are, or will soon be, a parent, congratulations! You are on a wild and wonderful ride full of ups and downs, ins and outs and a whole lot of trial and error. Parenting has always been this way, and yet, we live in a time like never before. Our children are leaps and bounds ahead of where we were at their age.
Let me say that again: Our children are leaps and bounds ahead of where we were at their age.
No matter what stage of life your little ones are in -- babyhood, toddlerhood, childhood or teenhood -- this time in history is like no other. There's more technology, more access to the world at large, seemingly more choices about education and nutrition and activities and on and on.
There's more accessible information about humans, our brains, our behaviors and our relationships. Roll all this together and it can feel overwhelming, or it can feel like an amazing opportunity. As a member of my year-long program, Evolve, said at a workshop,
My grandparents lived in intense times. Their day to day was a struggle, and that didn't give them energy and skills to develop the emotional capacities of their children. They were focused on making sure the children didn't die or get hurt! And this wasn't an unrealistic, far away fear -- it was constant. So the fact that my mother, in a safer world, was able to parent with even the slightest bit more compassion, connection, and love - is a huge improvement. So I think of myself, parenting this new person in today's world, and I know I have an amazing opportunity to use the tools and skills and information to really connect and guide and actually enjoy this experience.
She's so spot on! Parenting always comes down to the relationship you have with this person who is in the world. And today's parenting will look different from the parenting in 3014.
So, when I think about present moment parenting in the 21st century, these questions consistently come to mind. I'm listing them below as an offering to you. Let them float through your world, hold your answers lightly, and invite a sense of curiosity as to what comes up for you.
- What does it mean to "parent" in this day and age?
- What does it mean to really know yourself as a person?
- What does it mean to really know yourself as a parent?
- What does it mean to know your growing people as they unfold into more and more of themselves?
- What does it mean to be present to family life?
In other words, what does it mean to Parent Now?
Let it swirl, let it bubble, let it settle. I send you much love. And if you want to share your ideas, feel free to leave a comment or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
You're doing a great job,
P.S. If the concept of Parenting Now piques your interest, check out this online conference. I interviewed some dear friends, who happen to be some of the most innovative minds in the areas of human development, conscious parenting, psychology, neuroscience, holistic pediatrics, mindfulness, parenting for social change, the science of play, and more.
The conversations enlighten and guide you toward making family life blissfully your own. Come gather information, inspiration and tools that will catapult you into living a joyful life with your growing ones, here and now.