Did you know, you are the cause of all your discomfort? I’m not talking about the pain that comes when you cut your finger when slicing onions, but the emotional pain that comes when your child makes a choice that was not in the vision you had of him. Our brains are wired to not believe that all emotional pain comes from ourselves.
One of my sons, at the age of almost 20, called me from college to tell me he wasn’t going to go on a mission.
It was one of those moments you don’t want to happen. I broke down and cried right when I was on the phone. “Why?”, “I’m just not.” I cried for days afterwards; even though my thoughts were all about him and what he would be missing out on in his life; this decision was going to take him away from being active in the Church.
My thoughts: “He is making me so sad and disappointed.”
I thought I need him to call me back sometime and tell me he had had changed his mind and was going to go on a mission. When he did this, I would start feeling happier.
I was wasting energy trying to focus on him needing to change in order for me to feel better.
Now I know differently. I know that needing someone to do something, for me to feel good is false. If I want to feel good, I need to give up thoughts about what this is doing to me. I need to focus on just feeling sad and disappointed for a while.
Next, I need to be aware that when I want him to go on a mission is a less painful thought than I need for him to go on a mission.
When we need someone to act a certain way, it means we are trying to escape, or run away from pain; run from something that will cause us to feel bad. We are operating from a place of fear and it feels horrible.
When we want someone to act a certain way, we are operating from a place of peace. We are seeking happiness rather than running away from suffering.
What would it look like to want something but not need it???
I can want my son to go on a mission because I think it will cause him to grow in a way that he could not grow otherwise. But I don’t need him to go on a mission for me to be a loving, supportive mother.
When I need him to go on a mission, I give away all my power to creating joy in my life. When I give my power to his decisions, I lose my emotional self-reliance.
When I want him to go on a mission without needing him to, I take back my power to create thoughts and feelings that enable me to be the kind of mother that I want to be…..a more Christ-like mother, willing to love my son no matter he does.
What does it look like to want something but not need it?
I hurt for him not because of him.
This is also what love looks like. Loving my son for he just being him.
Love is always available.
Love always wins; I dare you to prove me wrong.
Do you need help choosing to love those difficult people that are hard to love? I can help you.
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