From Anxiety to Authority | Parenting & Emotional Turmoil

anxiety authority pattern emotional turmoil parenting

When my son got very comfortable with water and taking baths by himself (with someone present), he really enjoyed playing with water as it was being tapped, or playing with the showerhead extension while filling the bath. Though whenever it was time to turn off the tap there’d be a big cry and/or tantrum as he wasn’t happy to see his playtime end so soon.

Sometimes he’d get so engulfed in the tantrum/crying that he wouldn’t be aware of how he was moving and then slip and hurt himself. Though this only happened once or twice before he got that massive bath tantrums aren’t exactly a good idea. I didn’t like it when this would happen cause I had the tendency of taking his crying personal – where I would interpret his crying as a judgment directed towards me.

After it happened a few times that bath-time ended in tears, I started dreading bath-time in anticipation of the not so happy ending which would follow. The moment he would ask to take a bath or when we needed to get clean, anxiety would immediately creep up as I would already imagine him having a cry out at the end of it. And then sure enough, it would happen and we’d go through the motions once more.

This was not a fun experience as I would like to enjoy bath time and have him enjoy bath time regardless of how it ends. Applying the principle of getting the message behind an emotion, I opened up the anxiety experience inside myself. Within this, I could see the following lesson within the emotion of anxiety:

Whenever we experience anxiety towards a particular event or playout, it’s not so much the actual event or playout which we fear, but are experience as a reaction TOWARDS the event. Where, we once went through such an event/playout before and experienced this as being unpleasant in some way or another. Then if we anticipate the same or similar event to play out, we project our past experience unto the future playout – and end up with a self-fulfilling prophecy.

When I went into anxiety, it wasn’t because I was fearing him crying or having a tantrum. I was fearing my inner-experience, my experience of diminishment inside that I had gotten accustomed to, to his crying. I was in fact: fearing myself. In my head, these two aspects – the physical aspect of him crying/having a tantrum, and the aspect of me taking his crying personal – were fused as being ‘one and the same’. So when I went into anxiety and already imagined the future playout of his crying or tantrum, it made it seem as if I was fearing the actual physical event.

We assume that how we experienced ourselves in the past will be how we will experience ourselves in the future. But we also assume that we cannot experience ourselves any other way. In this, we have already defined and accepted ourselves as a particular behavioural trait or pattern, such as: when my son cries/throws a tantrum = I take it personal. If this, then that. When we enter into anxiety, we don’t fear the ‘if this’ part of the equation, we fear the ‘then that’ part.

Anxiety as a message, wishes to tell us that we have allowed ourselves to succumb to a pattern. That our experience is confined and limited to that which the pattern dictates, and believe there to be no way out (unless we avoid the event connected to the anxiety which we fear, which is merely avoiding the trigger to the experience, but the patterns still remains existent within us).

If we do not take heed of the message anxiety wishes to show us, anxiety remains because its message is put on hold. We remain a victim to our pattern and will feel less and less in control of our life. What anxiety is demanding, is for us to become the Author of our own lives. To not passively accept a pattern to overrun and overwhelm us, but to decide who we are and how we will experience ourselves in any given moment. When we become the author of our own life and script our own story, we establish Authority inside ourselves.

Are you going to remain a slave to your reaction-pattern, or are you going to script and author your own outcome?

I decided that I do not want to keep taking his cries personal. I decided to change the pattern.

His reaction never was personal to me. His crying merely indicated his sadness to a desire which couldn’t be fulfilled. When I made peace that his crying didn’t make me a lesser parent or person, the anxiety disappeared and soon enough so did his tantrums. Children have very sharp perceptual senses. When we are in a heightened state of distress, for instance when we are in anxiety within anticipating an unpleasant event, the child picks up on this. Our whole body and state of being is in essence screaming to them: “Something bad is about to come our way!” So when the event happens, the child reacts in distress because he or she assumes it is the appropriate way to respond. They don’t necessarily believe that was it happening is distressing. They are merely following our example. As long as I was in anxiety about having the tap turned off, where the turning of the tap was followed by an experience of diminishment inside myself – he assumed that it is only appropriate for him to also feel diminished when the tap turned off and play time was over. If I however showed him that turning the tap on or off doesn’t affect how I feel about myself or my levels of enjoyment, then he learns that turning off the tap doesn’t mean turning off enjoyment inside himself.

From Self-Pity to Self-Recognition | Parenting & Emotional Turmoil

self pity self recognition parenting emotional turmoil

For this blog I will be using an example of my son and his experience of Self-Pity, as the simplicity within which children at a young age experience and observe the world can be a helpful reference.

When my son was just able to start walking, he discovered he can walk to my desk and then get underneath my desk by crawling on his hands and knees. On his way back out however, where he is crawling out from underneath the desk, he had the tendency to stand up too early and so hit his head on the edge of the desk. Initially, he didn’t really mind. Sure, it would hurt, but then it was over quick and soon enough he’d find his way back underneath my desk. But once this pattern started repeating itself, he wouldn’t just cry – he would get emotional about it. He wasn’t just crying because of the physical pain, but from a sense of unfairness, in a way asking “Why does this keep happening to me?!” And then he would come to me looking for comfort. Though, instead of comforting him which would validate his sense of victimhood, I instead showed him how he has been replaying and re-creating this event. I showed him how he each time just guesses ‘when’ and ‘where’ to stand up – and doesn’t actually check whether he is steering clear from the desk. I would crawl underneath the desk, then crawl back out – LOOK above me and show him when I am still under the desk, knock on the desk to show where I would hurt myself. Then crawl more look to make sure I am out from underneath the desk, and only then stand up. Then I did the same thing, with him crawling with me and going through the steps.

Ever since then, he crawls in and out and practices his ‘check points’ to make sure he is moving in and out without hurting himself, rather than going on assumption.

If I had merely comforted him each time he hurt himself, he would have felt better about himself – but he would not have gained a practical solution to empower himself. Instead, he would keep replaying the same pattern, feeling bad, needing someone to make him feel better, and then hit his head again. The comfort provides a short-term release but does not provide him with the problem-solving skill he needs in the long turn to overcome an obstacle or challenge – and prevent it from reoccurring.

To be able to empower himself into a solution oriented direction, he first had to acknowledge and recognize his short-coming, without judging or victimizing himself for that particular short-coming. In this example, the short-coming was that he was participating in assumption instead of checking in with reality. Unless we recognize where we are at, we cannot constructively move forward. When he would go into victimization, he wasn’t looking at himself and how he could change – instead the desk was to blame, the desk was seen as the origin of all his suffering and it was the desk that needed to change. If he had moved forward with that information, he would still encounter the same issue because his perception was providing him with inaccurate information.

So whenever you face a situation where you experience self-pity in relation to a particular obstacle or challenge, it’s important to ‘get the facts straight’ within applying Self-Recognition.

What is the reality of the situation? Where am I being ineffective in my approach? Where am I empowering myself? What steps have I already taken to resolve this problem? Have I taken and considered all the steps to resolve this obstacle/challenge absolutely? Do I have the capacity to resolve this particular obstacle/challenge by myself? Do I require the assistance and support of another to walk through this obstacle?

Often, self-pity sets in when we face a challenge which requires us to move out of our comfort zone, a challenge which demands personal expansion. We can either recognize our shortcomings, support ourselves to change and move beyond them – or, we can judge ourselves for our shortcomings, victimize ourselves and seek recognition from others that our shortcomings as limitations are ‘very real’ and that others are to blame, to make ourselves feel better without actually changing or moving forward.

 

Stop Being an Observer – Become the Participant!

toddler jumping trampoline leilazamoramoreno

Monkey-butt jumping on the trampoline whilst gnawing on a carrot. What I noticed with him and his jubilance for life, is that it isn’t so much the ‘active’ part of his life that astounds me, – but how he is an active participant in his life and reality around him. How he is constantly here,
interacting, directing, asking, moving – in every moment. This was a very rough transition for me, as I did not even see and realise what a passive role I had assigned to myself and my life. Where I was used to being a passive observer of my life and reality, where my environment would move me, my ideas, beliefs, and limitations would move me (or rather inhibit me from moving). Now I was faced with a being who wanted to do things, create things, explore things, investigate things. He is all about how he can use his environment to the fullest, how can he use his environment to have the most fun. Who can he interact and participate with? He never beats around the bush. When he wants something, he makes it happen. If he sees something interesting, he goes and explores it. His movements and words are specific – to the point. Something I was not used to at all. When I see something interesting or I am curious about something, or maybe I want something – I don’t go and direct it, immediately and see what can be done. There’s the seeing – and then there’s this whole thought process that comes along about why I should or shouldn’t and why it’s a good or a bad time, or how it’s not my place to do it and whatever else the mind can come up with. Thankfully with him, I get a lot of practice, because to be able to direct him effectively as part of my reality, I need to be able to stand equal and one to his straightness and directness, and not beat around the bush for him to take me seriously and have a relationship of equals. He shows me the simplicity of life, how simple we can actually move, direct and create things in our reality and completely side-line the mind and its ‘what ifs’.
Everyday he is happy to be awake, because it’s another day that he can be an active participant in his life and reality – a motto I am learning to
integrate and live for myself. Thanks Cesar!

Fortune flows from Misfortune

bath toddler play leilazamoramoreno

Cesar taking a bath past 23.00, is not an unusual sight in our house. His sleeping pattern is still erratic, and from our experience – interrupting or intervening in his sleeping would only make things even more unpredictable, and he’d become very shifty in his behaviour. It’s not always easy to go with his flow, especially when there’s a sudden change and we haven’t been able to ‘prep’ ourselves for it (read: not having had enough sleep to match his upcoming sleeping pattern). What I found very valuable in such situations is to not get caught up in the misfortune of the situation, but to instead find creative ways of passing the time that is both enjoyable for me and him. Here for instance, I was already out of the bath but was bathing with him before, where we added Epsom salts and essential oils to enjoy a good nice soak. We still have a few hours to go tonight – it’s a challenge as most people and animals have gone to sleep and so we must make the most of our room for the coming hours. It’s in these unfortunate moments and situations that you find little gems, moments of inspiration and creativity, to make the best of every moment despite of the odds.

#parenting #toddler #baby #bath #sleepingpattern #nighttime #creativity #inspiration #makethebest #focusonsolutions #motherhood #beattheodds

 

Sleepy Time

toddler dog sleeping leilazamoramoreno

While Cesar is still going through his odd sleeping pattern of staying up till late into the night, the black labs (Blackie & Nibble) don’t mind spending the time with him. Blackie and Cesar play ball, Nibble gets comfortable and is on the lookout for crumbs. Then, when Cesar is eventually tired and wanting to knock out – he goes lay next to one them (or on top, which Blackie is okay with but is a no-no for Nibble) and falls asleep. Sometimes he will try and go to sleep several times, and each time copy the body position of the dog he is lying next to, checking out what’s so comfortable about it.

Here, Nibble and Cesar are sleeping in Cesar’s cot-turned-couch, as mirror reflections. Lately Cesar’s also been playing with pillows. He usually just falls asleep straight on the floor without any pillow or blanket, or on the mattress, with no pillow or blanket (he will wake up to get the blanket off of him).

#dogs #labrador #black #toddler #sleep #companions @destenifarm

Nature’s Playground

toddler gardening pepper paprika leilazamoramoreno

Plucking some tiny red peppers with Cesar. It has been a while since we’ve had red pepper, as it costs at least double the price of the green peppers in the shops.
We now have a whole bunch of pepper plants on the nursery whose green peppers are starting to turn red. With some of the big rains lately we’ve been able to pluck a lot of figs, some of which we dried in the sun so they can keep longer.
Next we are awaiting the apples of the apple trees to ripen so we can make some home made apple cider vinegar.
Cesar’s been very happy to participate in plucking fruits, veg and herbs, watering plants, crafting (turns out toddler’s motoric skills are great to create a rustic look lol) and helping me make oil infusions and tinctures.
Next want to test if he is ready to assist me with making seedlings and taking care of them in trays.

#farmlife @destenifarm #herbs #vegetables #livingislearning #nature #play #toddler #parenting

Learning through Doing

toddler dog zen leilazamoramoreno

Cesar likes to experience was others are experiencing, so here he went to lay next to Snowy on the porch and would wave flies away from her face as she’s taking her nap.
Sometimes he will put his food bowl on the floor and eat from it like a dog.
I remember my parents walking into me once in the garden where I was grazing on all fours and asked me what I am doing. ‘I am playing mule’ I said.
The swimming pool was always the time and place to play dolphin.
Animals always seem so peaceful and grounded that it seemed more fun to copy and emulate them over adult humans.

#dog #toddler #animals #game #play #copy #emulate

The Perversion of Innocence

Source: Pixabay

Source: Pixabay

If you’ve been following my blogs, my facebook and/or my Instagram – you’ll have noticed a lot of pictures of my son Cesar. For the past two years, no-one seemed to have an issue with this fact. My son plays a central role in my life. Parenting plays a vital role in determining the character of our child, whether they will live their utmost potential – or succumb to the sins of our fathers: replaying generations of emotional and mental baggage.

When I embarked on my parenting journey, I realised I had a lot to learn. But that if I was open to myself, my son and new possibilities – I would find new ways of establishing parent-child relationships based on mutual respect and trust rather than control and domination. Control and domination which not only govern parent-child relationships, but the way we live our lives on Earth. It’s in parenting, the school system, our employment system, government, financial sector, corporate sector – anywhere you look, this dynamic rears its face. That’s because all of these systems, all of these structural set-ups in the world come into being, are maintained and fuelled by individuals. Individuals who were once children. Children who were raised under the guide of dominance and control. People – who simply ‘know no other way’.

So, within realising the problem at hand – and having the opportunity to evaluate and walk a parent-child relationship myself; it immediately became clear that: whatever I learn, whatever I realise, whatever mistake I find that I can correct = is indispensable to share.

In the day and age where centralized information is more and more taking a side-position, where more and more people are broadcasting their individual lives, research, insights, realizations – it only seemed natural to use this powerful medium as a tool for sharing a message.

But now – back to the main story. I’ve been posting pictures of my son for a little bit over 2 years, with stories, realisations, insights that I developed and gathered while walking my personal journey. It’s been an absolute pleasure to read people’s feedbacks. To read and see that many of us walk and face the same obstacles, that people can relate and find themselves in my story and are able to help themselves through it. So what changed?

Well, as part of potty training we started leaving his diaper off. It being African summer and getting quite hot, he was quite comfortable not wearing any clothes at all. He then started liking not wearing any clothes at all as it improved his range of motion and simply liked the comfort of being naked. It’s nice to be naked.

Our lives simply continued, I kept taking pictures. So now there are some pictures where his monkeybutt is visible. While in general the feedback from other people remains the same as people continue to enjoy the storylines accompanying the pictures, some concerns start trickling through.

That I “should be careful posting pictures of my son on the internet”. That “there are a lot of freaks and creeps out there”. That I’m “exposing my child”.

What to do? Personally, I love that he is comfortable in his own skin. I love that he has zero body issues and doesn’t see anything wrong with his body or nakedness. I remember my own childhood moments of being naked, free and enjoying myself – whether inside the house or in nature. Where the size, shape or colour of your body didn’t mean a thing. You were here, alive – celebrating your existence!

The problem is not our care-free children. The problem is not our children’s self-comfortability.

The problem lies with US. We react to children expressing themselves, innocently, naturally. We react because ‘people might get aroused’, staring thinking all kinds of things – maybe even go as far as planning to kidnap our children to play out their fantasies.

But how do these dysfunctions get created in the minds of such people? And how do we exacerbate and aggravate such as issues once we become aware they exist? Will not posting pictures of my child playing provide a solution for these individuals and society at large which fears their danger? No.

These type of mental dysfunctions are the result of not understanding, not knowing oneself. Where for instance, one see a child play, realise their innocence and their sense of freedom. Where we see that we have lost that innocence and the ability to just ‘be ourselves’ regardless of what anyone might think. We see that we ‘like’ seeing this expression, this innocence at play. What we are not seeing, is how children are showing us that which we have lost – and what we need to regain for ourselves. Instead of focussing on how we can become carefree and innocent like a child once more, it’s easy for a person to start focusing on the child itself as an object, a gateway TO innocence and freedom – rather than developing and living innocence and freedom ourselves. One starts to believe that the only way one can experience this expression is through them. Now one starts reacting that one likes and enjoys children and their expression. That maybe something is wrong with oneself, that maybe…maybe I am sexually attracted to this child? Now one’s mind goes to all sorts of places – and within not realising that the issue at hand is one’s relationship with oneself which has got NOTHING TO DO with the child – one fixates and obsesses over the child and one’s reaction towards the child which one judge heavily. The more we judge ourselves, the more we fuel the particular reaction, the more it builds up, the more it starts seeking RELEASE. And then people do stupid things, and people get hurt.

Not posting pictures of one’s child, or ensuring one’s child is always ‘nicely covered’ with low tolerance for skin, only perpetuates the taboo. It only enforces the idea that the issue lies with the children, and not the adults. The more we try and hide and cover up – the more we label something as ‘bad’ the more resistance we create around the subject. And whatever we resist will persist. In the meantime, our children get the indirect message that they are ‘bad’ for enjoying themselves, that nakedness is shameful (even though it may not be our intent to relay this message), that they should monitor and put a limit on their expressiveness because someone might want to come and take advantage of it. In the meantime, you’re also sending a message to everyone other than your child that: you can’t be trusted. You’re perverted. You can’t control yourself. Later, when the child is grown up to an adult – he now has reactions towards ‘skin’ and ‘nakedness’. Thinking and believing it’s something ‘special’, something he needs to ‘explore and experience’ – because he was denied his own experience of intimacy and comfortability with and in his own skin.

We see this same pattern the area of dressing codes, where schools are more and more restricting and imposing rules on what a girl may or may not wear out of fear of ‘triggering’ any classmates or male teachers. That women shouldn’t dress attractively or be their expressive self, because then they’re ‘asking for rape’. This ideas and opinions persist, regardless of studies showing that if someone is set out to rape or abuse someone – they’re going to do it. That what we believe ‘triggers’ a person, is most often not the reason or justification they used to take advantage of another. That a person will go forward with rape or abuse, regardless of how one dresses. This is because ANYTHING can be made into a justification for abuse. If you wear clothes revealing a lot of skin – a person may go ‘Oh, she’s just asking for it – look at her’. If a girl is dressing modestly, the same person might go ‘Oh, she’s playing hard to get but she’s actually dying for it’. A girl may give another a friendly smile – and one can go ‘Oh, that’s a sign that she likes me and wants to have sex with me’. Another girl, who was told to dress modestly, not ever smile, or to not every make eye contact with strangers because of the fear of getting raped; may come across someone who interprets the behaviour as “Why is she acting like I don’t exist? Does she think she is so much better than me? She deserves a lesson!”.

So really, covering yourself up, not covering yourself up, doing a bit of both – IT DOESN’T MATTER.

If someone is out to take advantage of another because of their own personal issues with themselves = they’re going to do it. It doesn’t help to control, monitor and manage the symptom. All you end up with is a lose-lose situation. You end up with people having dysfunctional relationships with themselves who do not get addressed, while everyone else supresses and goes into hiding.

The least we can do is to be true to ourselves, to express ourselves freely – to show others ‘this is how you do it’, ‘This is what having a healthy relationship with yourself and others looks like’. The moment we hide, change ourselves, and suppress ourselves – we’re allowing the problem to take over. That we’re victims to the situation and the only thing we can do is to adjust ourselves to accommodate other people’s weaknesses.

Personally, that is not a way to live.

From Guilt to Accountability | Parenting & Emotional Turmoil

guilt accountability parenting emotional turmoil leilazamoramoreno

In this blog, I will be using the example from my previous post ‘From Anger to Integrity’, to elaborate on the regret and guilt dimension which played out in the scenario. Please read this blog first to gain full context.

So in my previous blog, we walked an example of how we tend to act while emotions are high, and end up regretting the course of action we took. This leaves a bitter taste in the mouth which we experience as guilt and regret.

Now, a fascinating thing with Guilt, is that we use guilt as a self-punishing instrument. The moment we act in a way which we perceive is wrong or contrary to our personal principles, guilt sets in where we feel bad about ourselves and feel ourselves being stuck in a rut.

What I noticed with myself, when taking a course of action with my son which I would regret – is that I would go through a period of feeling really bad about myself and putting myself down. However, as soon as another opportunity arose – it was very easy to make the exact same mistake again – only to be followed by another ‘guilt session’.

Within this, the act of feeling guilty and indulging in this experience was in essence ‘punishment enough’. Where I did something wrong, ‘paid for it’ – and was then able to once more go about doing as I please. We find this pattern in our own religious belief systems as well. We will go for confession and ‘confess our sins’ while feeling bad for it – be forgiven, but come next Sunday we are right back at square one asking forgiveness for the same sins.

In my parenting journey, it became invaluable to not remain stuck and indulge in an experience of guilt. Feeling guilty and deliberately prolonging the experience by participating in self-diminishing thoughts only places you in a position of disempowerment. How you’re ‘such a bad parent’ or ‘how inadequate you are’. These are all statements where we condemn ourselves to remain stuck, and define ourselves by our weaknesses. Instead, I learnt to listen to the message behind Guilt – which is that of Personal Accountability.

When I find myself feeling guilty after a particular action of behaviour, I check my actions and ask myself where, how and why I acted contrary to my principles. The experience of guilt lets me now that I strayed from my moral compass and that there is a lesson to be learnt. Instead of indulging and plunging in the emotional storm of guilt, I ask myself what course of action would have been appropriate. I immediately commit myself to live this this course of action as a correction and to remind myself of this particular weakness I identified within myself. The moment I embrace this commitment and set myself up for success next time around – any feeling of guilt disappears. So just like anger, guilt does not arise for us to punish ourselves and tell us ‘how bad’ we are. It’s a flag in our biofeedback system indicating that there is an improvement in our approach which needs to take place. Guilt lets us know we made a mistake. It’s an indication for yourself to take responsibility for your actions and to restore your trust in yourself. After all, nobody likes it when someone says ‘sorry’ but fails to follow through in adjusting their behaviour. What makes an admission of remorse real is not the utterance of it, but the actions which follow.

On another note – I have also experienced adjusting my behaviour and approach the next time a similar situation took place, but where instead of being clear inside myself, I would experience a sensation of discomfort inside myself.

Guilt is linked to our moral compass and comes about when we move in a different direction than the one our compass dictates. Yet sometimes (or for some maybe often), it is not the behaviour or approach we need to change – but the morals we were responding to. Our sense of right and wrong is established in our childhood years where we absorb what is right and wrong from our parents, family, school, friends – you name it. We often copy beliefs and morals believing they are ‘the right thing to do’ because others told us so, without checking whether we actually agree with these beliefs/morals. Often, these morals are imposed to use using some kind of emotional enforcement. If we don’t obey/comply to the morals set out for us, we get punished, excluded – leaving ourselves feeling alone and unaccepted. To avoid these experiences, we behave as we are expected to behave by our environment, and not because we agree with the morals presented to us.

Say your parents were very intolerant of any kind of crying in the house. Crying is seen as a form of weakness and not to be tolerated. When you were found crying you received comments to ‘man up’ and ‘get over it already’. Now, many years later you have a baby. Your baby is crying for no apparent reason and you pick your baby up to comfort her. While you are holding and rocking her, you feel guilty for ‘giving in’ to your crying baby. You think you are being weak and that indulging in comforting her will cause her to develop a weak and dependent character.

Now say that because of this, you promise to next time leave your baby to ‘cry it out’. The next time comes around and you leave your baby to cry it out. On the one hand you praise yourself for your discipline but on the other hand you feel very uncomfortable and sad about the whole situation.

In such a scenario (which I personally went through as well!), it’s important to take a moment to evaluate your compass. Do you really stand by the moral dictated by your compass? Do you really believe and stand by it? Or have you conditioned to stand by it to avoid uncomfortable experiences and criticism of others?

Here, it can be valuable to investigate your own childhood, to see how you responded to such an approach and whether it had the best possible outcome for you. You can for yourself, play out the future of your own child. If you uphold this approach and behaviour in the long-run, will you achieve the long term goals you have set for yourself as a parent as well as for your child? This can sometimes be difficult to emulate, as we often only tend to draw from our own experiences. If ignoring and suppressing crying is all you have ever known, it can be hard to imagine how things could have turned out if your parents had opted for a different approach. When I face an impasse like this, I reach out to other people and do my own research on the internet. Even if I am not sure of a new approach or suggestion, I will push myself to test it out unconditionally to see what the results are. Remember though that each person’s perspective and suggestions may not always work for you as not everyone finds themselves in the same situation, nor do we all have the same children. Find what works for you and be honest with yourself whether you are satisfied or not with the approach you are taking. This is part of being accountable to yourself. To be fully cognizant of the decisions we make and to be able to stand by them. All too often I found my parenting mistakes to be rooted in copied beliefs and morals from my own parents, media, schooling etc. This is in part what I love about my parenting journey. To constantly assess and evaluate any ‘hidden’ beliefs or morals, to check whether I agree full heartedly with them – and to change them if need to be. As a child,I lacked the autonomy and skill to establish these for myself. As an adult with my own child, I am bound to revisit these and can filter out the junk and keep what’s good.