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Sunday, August 28, 2016

Caught up on meditations...

My oldest daughter is three years old....

I've been thinking about this day for awhile.  I've had an idea in my mind that our informal home school preschooling will start when miss J turns three.  Something interesting has happened through these years, however.....

I've always been an early education advocate, but my priorities have changed dramatically.  When J was first born, my emphasis was on academics and physical ability.  Somewhere along the line, the focus changed to social emotional ability, executive functioning and household management.  This is a nice shift because school is supposed to handle academics anyways.

Some areas I want to focus on....

Executive Functioning
Listening (really listening when someone talks)
Ability to advocate for self
Ability to say no (not a problem right now, haha)
Social Emotional Skills (a lot of the above falls under that)
following multi step directions

Meal prep
Managing money

Ability to read and love of reading
fine motor skills
phonemic awareness
story telling

language learning (spanish and Mandarin)
music (love of, vocabulary and possible instrument)

That's not much, eh?  And I'm sure I left something out.  L has stuff she needs to work on too....

imitating sounds
imitating gestures
body parts
following multi step directions
signing (if possible)


There is one meaning to the phrase "forgetting myself" that admonishes me not to lose my temper. When someone says something rash or ugly, we say they are "forgetting themselves," meaning they are forgetting their best selves in a sudden fit of uncontrolled anger.
Someone at an Al-Anon meeting spoke of this in telling how her mother helped her overcome a fiery temper when she was a little girl:
"Whenever I had a tantrum, my mother would say very quietly: You're forgetting yourself, dear; modulate your voice and then it won't hurt so much.' That always brought me up short and made me ashamed. Once I answered, All right, mother, I will remember myself, and finally all she had to say was; "Forgetting yourself? Modulate . . .' and we'd both laugh."
Today's Reminder
If I remember the kind of person I want to be, I won't forget myself and yield to an angry voice -- quiet always sets the stage for calm. "Forget not thyself in times of anger. . ."

**Now that I've been in the program for awhile, I am re-reading these daily meditations.  I remember reading this the first time and now again.  I'll share a memory that pops up once in awhile when I'm feeling resentful or hurt by my mom.  I was maybe eight years old.  My sister, mom and I were sitting on our sofas, in our usual spots, and my mom is saying, "You wouldn't really like it if I talked like that.." And then she starts imitating a sweet kind mom with a kind voice speaking in a nice way.  And I did like it and I nodded that yes I would like that and thought my mom might seriously try to be nicer.  And then my mom switched back to her normal voice, and said something like, "Well, that's not going to happen." And my little eight year old heart was crushed.  I have to remember that I'm not that little girl anymore.  And if I were with that little girl, I would give her a hug and comfort her and tell her that it wasn't her fault her mom was like that, but not all people are.  I would tell her that I would kind and loving towards her always.  
Anyways............. passage 2
 As I grew up it seemed that my parents couldn't see me at all. I felt invisible and voiceless.. I had no idea of my likes and dislikes, let alone what I would or would not accept in a relationship. I felt empty inside. When there did seem to be something inside me, it felt like someone else's experience.
Al-Anon changed all that. I heard suggestions such as "Keep the focus on yourself," and, "Take your own inventory instead of someone else's." These ideas perplexed me. Who was I? I didn't know myself. The person I knew was the teenager my mother considered a burden. My father criticized me incessantly. There had to be more to me than that.
By working the Steps, especially the first four, I came to know who I am. In Step One I experienced myself as someone who insanely tried to control alcoholism but couldn't. I came to know my powerlessness. In Step Two, I considered the existence of and possible help from a Power my senses couldn't define. I came to know my God as I understand Her. In Step Three I experienced my yearning to trust that Power, who was greater than me. I came to know my surrendered self. And in Step Four I experienced my ability to define myself rather than let others do the job. I came to know me.
Thought for the Day
In Al-Anon I can safely do the work of defining myself rather than allowing others to do the job.
"The real truth might be that we are far more valuable and loveable than other people have led us to believe." Courage to Be Me, p. 122


  1. How very exciting to have such clear goals for your girls!

    That story you shared is truly saddening. Hug your inner child for me. I agree that remembering who I want to be helps me to behave better. I'm still trying to figure out who I am.

    1. Will do, Cheski!! While, it could have been so much worse.... it was still not ok. My mom also hid a lot of things from us thinking she was protecting us. It was a good idea, but it actually gave me a warped view of what is normal.

  2. p.s. What is executive functioning?

    1. It's a set of skills that helps you get things done: manage time, be organized, pay attention, switch focus, regulate emotions. It actually encompasses a laundry list of skills. But, I was thinking of organization, focus and planning.