I read The Four Agreements one year after having escaped a dangerous and toxic relationship and one year prior going back to college to become a lawyer. This book literally changed my life. The four core life principles are:
- May we be impeccable with our word: I teach my children that their mouth shall be clean both ways. As much as we strive to feed ourselves the most nourishing food, we must strive to talk in a respectful way, without bad language, making sure we do not hurt the feelings of others with the words we speak,
- May we do not take anything personally: other people criticism and judgement of ourselves has in fact nothing to do with us, we are their mirror so how they behave towards us only means so much as regard to them, their mindset and their values,
- May we do not make assumptions: again, judgement is useless because if only we could take a bird’s-eye view, we could see all the missing data on a given situation, we cannot see the full picture so may we keep an open mind and an open heart while walking bravely on the path, even if they are some circumstances which we cannot understand fully right now, and
- May we always do our best: may be honestly assess if we have given our all to something, if the answer is yes, we are enough, and we can be proud of ourselves sister.
Rebuilding our life implies identifying our own core values, in an intense and clear manner. Knowing who we are also allows us to become a better mother. Children are a mirror of who we are. May we be strong and trustful in our education principles, even before we give birth. Such self-knowledge can help us to build our life, to rebuild our life and to build the life of our child. A huge thank you to Jean Liedloff for a revolutionary book “The Continuum Concept: In Search Of Happiness Lost“.
“Sometimes you get discouraged
Because I am so small
And always leave my fingerprints
On furniture and walls.
But every day I’m growing –
I’ll be grown some day
And all those tiny handprints
Will surely fade away.
So here’s a little handprint
Just so you can recall
Exactly how my fingers looked
When I was very small.”
May we always remember this. May we learn patience. May we grow as a mother but also as a woman so that children are not guilty when they become adults.
I am doing my best to raise happy and healthy kids. I want to be a good mother. However, I refuse to sacrifice myself for them because I want to avoid resentment on my part and guilt on their part. However, finding the right balance is so difficult. During the holiday, I had the opportunity to dance in the hotel bar in the evening. It transformed me, because I have not danced in more than ten years while dancing has been my main passion since I am a little girl. When both of my children whined and forced me to go back to the hotel room while I was dancing, it pained me. My friend, my sister, did you find a way to find such a balance?
The manipulator would sometimes spend dozens of minutes during the day to repeat: “Do you know I love you? You do believe me, don’t you? This is very important“. Today, I am a different person because I learned my lesson. However beautiful and convincing the words of a man, they are worthless if his actions do not match. Moreover, I expect a congruence between my own words and actions. It is a matter of integrity and authenticity. I do what I say and I say what I do. Lastly, such an effort is essential to the positive education I want to provide for my children. Acting in alignment with my words means I teach the good example to my children, while it fosters a trustful relationship between us.
The children did quite a lot of video games over the last week-end, because I got caught up with much work to do on the computer. However, it is my responsibility. If I want to promote reading, it is my duty to show a good example and do just that, reading. If I want to play a game with them, I can take the cards and start a game. I must organize myself to have less work to do on the computer over the week-end, because video games make the children very agitated and nervous.
My friend, my sister, I am sharing my experience to let you know that it is possible to be happy without any TV. If you feel it is for you, not only is it doable, but your productivity and self-awareness will increase. Additionally, it is a good way to spark these creative skills in our children.