Covid is the virus that’s all over the news but it’s NOT the one that is permeating our homes. There is an even more pervasive virus in our homes & our children are the most vulnerable!
We ALL carry this virus. It grows within us & we, unintentionally, infect our children.
The symptoms disguise themselves in many sophisticated ways. On the surface it can look like help, perfectionism, caring, overachieving & attention to detail.
Wait! … How could such positive qualities be symptoms of such a harmful disease? I’m glad you asked. Don’t be fooled it can also show up as procrastination, sarcasm, a jokester, anger or defiance.
The ‘dis-ease’ invading our homes & attacking our children is ANXIETY. It comes from a virus called FEAR & we are usually guilty of transmitting it in the most loving ways.
I’ve experienced all the symptoms of this infectious disease many times throughout my life but no more so than as a mother.
Physically; the chills, the sweats, the racing heart, loss of appetite, increase in appetite, nausea, & shallow breathing.
Mentally; the overwhelm, the “what if’s”, the “shoulds”, the feeling out of control, & the overall sense of panic.
I know it well! I was a master at justifying it, all in the name of the LOVE for my child.
Fear manipulates us into behaving like the Moms we swore we would never be. The worst part is that this Mom-xiety is not only socially acceptable but glorified & worn like a badge of honour! After all, our own Moms have told us, “You never stop worrying about your kids”, to justify her own care & concern. We’ve learned from the best!
This pandemic threatens our child’s most primal need to feel safe & secure. Fear is the most destructive force in our life & it controls every aspect of our relationship with our child, whether we choose to see it or not.
Here’s the problem, if fear underlies every way that we interact with our children from boo boo’s & report cards to friends, occupations & spouses, this infection never has the chance to heal.
If we don’t acknowledge, recognize it & deconstruct what the fear is made up of & where it comes from, then our knee jerk “NO’s”, “Because I said so’s” & the “Let me do that for you Honey’s” will come from a place that only serves our own anxiety while contributing to theirs.
See our symptoms may look like they serve us well so it’s easy to dismiss them, but when our child is suffering, either compliant or defiant in our anxiety, instead of washing our hands & wearing our mask, we try to fix the one who shows the symptoms of our dis-ease.
It’s natural to feel scared, we are in the middle of a global crisis. There are many things that are uncertain & it’s easy to feel out of control however, tightening the reins on our children & trying to control them will not make us feel better & it will surely only make them feel worse.
We can reduce the anxiety our children are experiencing. How we deal with our fear will make all the difference in the way our children will not only come through this event, but how resilient they will be with the inevitable ones to come.
FEAR or Fantasized Experience Appearing Real is NOT real & more often than not, what we think, or fear, will happen never does.
Lindsay Lal Professional Coaching