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You Do You, It's the Best Way

Full blown, hot, summery greetings going out to you! This is my birthday month and we've been having the kind of weather that would have my mother remind me of how she labored in a military facility without air conditioning. I'm sure it was no picnic and she would have much rather been at the beach! Nine years later my sister was born the day before my birthday -- in an air-conditioned hospital. I think it was a better experience all around!

I've been able to continue with my morning walks, even while visiting that sister in Virginia this week and it's always interesting to me how many thoughts come while making my way around the neighborhood. Sometimes I think I should record them and then transcribe them and voila! the blogette would be written. I sometimes take notes to help out with the process later.

This week's MQ came to me when I was wishing I could make things "all better" for someone ...

"You can't fix or heal or make someone else do anything.

You can only do what you can do for yourself and then,

help them find their way.

That's just the way it works."

I'm sure you've all tussled with this at some point in your lives, especially if you've had children. Making them do something that you want and in which they just don't see the value ends up in a stalemate at best. Progress is usually made when we back off, calm down, and open up the space for resolution.

Yes, there are times when we need to assert ourselves to ensure the safety of another. Telling a child not to run out in traffic and physically holding them back is the only route to take. Usually, they will see the wisdom in your demands and action. Other times, it really is best if we step back and allow them to find their way. After all, do you remember the lessons your parents or teachers taught you nearly as much as the ones you had to experience and learn for yourself??

As a postpartum/mother-baby RN I am always dealing with brand-new, first-time parents. As much as I can "tell" them what to do, they don't always want to hear it. It makes a much bigger impact when they try to change the diaper without learning how to grab their baby's ankles or setting up the area with a clean diaper and wipes and suddenly find themselves with poop everywhere! I've even heard a father or two mutter, "I won't do it that way again!".

Years ago I would have been tempted to at least think, if not say, "I told you so" or "If you had listened to me ...", but I've been doing my work (it's an ongoing process, trust me) and I now know that isn't helpful. It doesn't foster confidence and it doesn't come from a place of kindness or caring. I used to offer constructive criticism to my daughter, justifying that even though I was pointing out something she could have done better, I was offering "guidance" and "assistance". My wise daughter finally said to me one day, "That really isn't helping me or the situation.". Even though I was taken aback, when I let it sink in, it was true.

I continue to do my inner work, listen to my soul, calm my scared ego ... it's the best I can do. Then, I am available to listen to others, hold them in a soft, kind, loving space and let them "find their way". I often forget what works, however there is always something to remind me and sometimes it doesn't take much for me to remember. Do what you can do for yourself -- that is what I wish for you.


Are you nearing 40 or already there and feeling like you're approaching a turning point? Does the word menopause bring up confusion or fear? Can you relate to calling it Me-no-pause, as in feeling like you haven't had a break in the last 20 years or so? As someone who has already gone through and come out the other side, If I put together a class where you could gather, virtually for now, with like-minded women and hash out some of this, would you like to be a part of it? Well, I am creating something and I'd like to know who might want to jump on board. Send me a quick note and I'll put you on the VIP list (which means you'll be among the first to know when things start happening!).

Sparkles and Love,

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About the Author




Barbara L Cummings, MS, RN

is a sassy Queen-ager whose mission is to co-create a happier, healthier life with and for others.

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