Note from Stacey: Today’s guest writer is Ginger Garner. I met Ginger on Twitter and we immediately recognized that we share a similar passion for living well and doing good. You can read Ginger’s bio below, but I also have to include that she is currently chair of the Swansboro, NC Haiti Initiative and was involved in efforts to help the Haitian people even before the earthquake in January. Since then she has been blogging frequently about her efforts. I hope you will go to her blog and read more about all of the amazing work that she does!
I am a mother. So as mothers and women often do, let’s be candid. When we look at our children, we feel different emotions. Covered in magic marker, syrup, poo or a combination of all three – and part of that concoction is on the sofa and walls (yes, it has happened in our house – more than once), we don’t always feel all warm and fuzzy on the inside.
Sometimes, when I look at my children, as cute as they are, my emotions – well, they fluctuate. I look at their chunky, cherub cheeks and I feel consumed, frustrated, loved, exasperated, fatigued, bewildered, humbled, confused…and sometimes I feel all those emotions in succession! My feelings can sweep through my mind like a blustery January Nor’easter or a placid summer breeze over a lazy lake. They peak…and subside. Sound familiar?
But I have to remind myself – feelings easily betray us. “Knee-jerk” emotions usually end in unfortunate reactions rather than loving responses. They can easily lead us down what my grandfather used to call a “rabbit path.” I try not to rely on my negative emotions to lead me too far down any one path. Because more often than not, I end up down a path I never intended or wanted to be on.
And so, I deliberately turn on one proverbial heel and quickly run home to the one very deep and grounding emotion which I know is ever present. Love.
Despite surface emotions, which may dictate an immediate feeling about my children, I know I assuredly love them. Why? Love requires belief. If we truly believe in Love, we can find amazing strength and fortitude to conquer many battles. Wars are great, but Love is bigger.
And so our Love allows us to see past the magic marker recipe on the wall. I remind myself to daily look for a measure of Perfection, of Divine, of God, in my children, and in all children. Looking through the transparent innocence of their eyes is the closest we can get to a glimpse of heaven on earth. As Charles Dickens wrote, “I love these little people (children); and it is not a slight thing when they, who are so fresh from God, love us.”
Mothers know this love. And poet, William Martin, writes of it in his poem, Clouds of Light.
Clouds of Light
by William Martin
They look so small and frail
but they are so great and magnificent.
They are born of the same womb
that birthed the cosmos
and knitted together the galaxies.
If you could see them as they truly are,
you would be astounded.
You would see not little children
but dancing clouds of light,
energy in motion,
swimming in an ocean of love.
They are so much more
than what you see.
As are you.
Unconditional Love could be the title of this amazing poem, but that would be too overt. However, Unconditional Love is the proverb or Truth of what we should continually give to our children, and to each other.
Let’s remind ourselves as parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends – we are nurturing the next responsible generation. If you work for or on behalf of children, you have the most important job of this generation, and have the power to affect the greatest influence over the next.
Ginger Garner MPT, ATC, is a licensed physical therapist, athletic trainer, and professional yoga therapist specializing in women’s health and chronic pain management. She writes a blog for women and mothers, Breathing In This Life . Ginger has a private practice, Elemental Renewal, where she practices holistic physical therapy and conducts lifestyle counseling through yoga & Ayurveda. Ginger founded Professional Yoga Therapy Studies, a CME program for holistic therapies. When not traveling to teach or speak on PYTS and women’s health, Ginger resides in Emerald Isle, NC with her husband, sons, and her 14.5 year young Labrador retriever, Owen. (This photo of Ginger was taken just a few hours after her second son was born in 2007!)