Make sure not to be angry, mama.

March 30th, 2015 by Dionna | 6 Comments
Posted in Consensual Living, Ensure Safe Sleep, Feed with Love and Respect, Gentle/Positive Discipline, Just for Fun/Miscellaneous, My Family, natural parenting

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Ailia nursing 2015

It is 10:00pm, and I’ve been nursing my three year old to sleep for the past 1.5 hours. I’m tired, I’m touched out, and I want to be anywhere but trapped underneath a little one who won’t go to sleep (but is too comfy to get up).

She’s snuggled up, warm and content, slowly strangling the blood flow from my left arm. I’m reading, sipping on hot tea, and trying to ignore all movement.

Occasionally, she pops off long enough to ask me a question (“do we have LEARN classes tomorrow?“) or to tell me something vitally important (“Kieran told me it wasn’t lava, but it was lava, and I was walking over it!“).

But my patience is wearing thin. Eventually, I’ve had it. I say in a fierce and dangerous voice, “I need you to close your eyes and sleep. Now! I’m so tired of sitting here!”

She gets very still; she even stops breathing for a moment.

A minute goes by. And then she musters up the courage to whisper: “Make sure not to be angry, mama.

And just like that, I relax.

Ailia did something we’ve been working on in our family. We try to remind each other to breathe and communicate. To strengthen relationships. To focus on love. Especially when we’re mad.

Her little voice, bravely reminding me to choose love over anger, has the ability to lower my blood pressure instantaneously. Calmer now, I give myself permission to breathe, to remind myself that she is little, to realize that she is probably not choosing to lay awake (or if she is, it’s because she enjoys laying with me).

I hug her tight and thank her for reminding me to choose love. I give her permission again to help me be kind any time I forget.

She smiles, reveling in our connection.

Less than five minutes later, Ailia is asleep.

I’m so thankful that what could have ended in a stress-filled, tense mess, instead resolved peacefully.

These are the rewards of learning to be compassionate together.


6 Responses to:
"Make sure not to be angry, mama."

  1. Holly

    That’s beautiful! I needed that this morning. My four year old is still nursing and we have a six week old baby now in the mix and some nights I just want to scream laying there nursing them. The baby just curls up and nurses, but the four year old is on and off the breast, asking questions, bouncing her legs, too restless for sleep. I ended up sending her to her room last night frustrated with my own lack of sleep but in the light of the morning, I brought her back in and gave her milkies. She looked at me this morning and said, “Thank you for the milkies, you’re my best friend.”

  2. This absolutely touched my heart this evening. Thank you for your honesty and candidness and for sharing the beautiful lesson you have been teaching to your family. This reminds me to try and ALWAYS practice love with my children (an everyone else too!).

  3. This is such a sweet story! Thank you for sharing, and for giving me more ideas of things I want to incorporate in my own family more.

  4. Angela   EarthMamasWorld

    Thank you so much for this reminder! I just spent almost an hour nursing my 4.5 year old to sleep and was left feeling super frustrated. I know that if my focus was more on love and less on all that other things that I could be doing I would have appreciated the nighttime snuggles much more.

  5. Ruth Mitchell

    I love you all so much!!!

  6. Heather Dancyger   universalkind

    Thank you so much for the reminder. I am no longer nursing my children, but I do still lay with them at bedtime. I usually love listening to their stories about their day, but some nights when I am exhausted and ready to relax with my iPad in hand, I cut them off. I have been learning to be mindful and remember that someday (most likely when they are teenagers)it will be me who wants desperately to hear about their day. I hope to teach my children the same compassion you are teaching yours. Wonderful post :)

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