Conversations with my Seven Year Old: In the Fear Forest

One of the blessings of having a second child is that we, as parents, gain some skills by walking with the first one through predictable stages of growth, maturity, illness, and emotional challenges. When our firstborn had a high fever, we panicked. When the younger one has a fever, it’s old hat. When our firstborn struggled with separation anxiety we thought he would never leave our side. With our second born, we trust that he will find his way with time (and some help, if he needs it).

These milestones of childhood often manifest as confrontations with fear. In the early days of this blog I often wrote about my older son’s fear of the dark and his intense fear of change and death. Like many highly sensitive-creative-prone-to-anxiety children, the fear of change and death tends to arise early and can easily preoccupy their minds for hours on end. Left … Click here to continue reading...

Whatever You Water Will Grow

This summer I was determined to grow a beautiful, thriving garden. Last spring I packed away my excuses (not enough time, it’s impossible with a toddler underfoot) and proceeded, under the tutelage of my dear friend, Lisa, to begin my seedlings in greenhouses beneath homemade ligthboxes. My older son and I attended to them faithfully each day and delighted as each little green sprout poked its head above ground. We watered them, transplanted them, and loved them. (Everest insisted on eating lunch beside them to make sure they felt loved.) And when it was finally time to plant them outdoors, we did so with tender loving care. This would surely be the year that we picked peas and kale straight from our own backyard!

All proceeded well for several weeks. I found time to water and weed them each day and, sure enough, the peas began to flourish. My soul … Click here to continue reading...