Kindness Recap: Last week we were asked to practice self-kindness. I revealed that I am terrible at self-kindness. Guess what? I still stink at it. My saving grace is I am self-aware. Last week’s post Self Kindness Deficiency focuses on the steps I take to when I am bullied by my worst enemy, me.
Self-awareness is exhausting! I take mini vacations from myself and I observe the kindness in my home.
After the carpools, activities, homework, bath, and dinner (Yes, the list is long) my daughters and I are gifted to just “Be”. I have a cup of tea and I watch them interact in the family room.
My daughters watch television arm-in-arm. The baby becomes restless and crawls all over the big girl. The big girl laughs and the baby squeals. The big girl helps the baby with her toys. They spin in circles on the rug. They laugh some more.
The love between my daughters washes away the anxieties of the day.
In the mornings, as I wait for the caffeine to kick in, and we flail around for coats and shoes, I observe them. The big girl puts the baby’s coat and shoes on without a word from me. It’s nothing I ask for, or expect. She just does. The baby hugs the big girl and will not let go. Her gratitude is nothing I taught her. She just does.
The kindness I witness between my daughters is beautiful. As their mother, I worry about the cruelty they will experience in this world. I know I cannot protect them from it all. I hope they see home as a place they can heal, they can breathe, they can be. Their home is a place where kindness is not a demand or rule. Kindness is just the way, like a song in the background.
I never taught them the lyrics. They teach me in the evenings as wind down with my cup of tea. While I drown myself in caffeine every morning, my daughters teach me the melody of kindness. My daughters are my mentors. All I have to do is put down my phone, get out of my own head, and just listen to them sing.
“The earth has music for those who listen.” George Santayana