On sunday morning I woke up early and was able to have the great privilege of witnessing a most incredible sunrise unfolding. A sky of scarlet, orange, purple and violet hues, the air was so serenely still, the light in the sky was reflecting off the water and I stood taking photos in absolute awe of how the day can greet me.
It was this that got me thinking about how I greet my children throughout the day. I remember reading somewhere that parents ought to make it a practice, a spiritual practice if you will, to get into the habit of greeting their children every time they see them like they are a sunrise; a beautiful, amazing, glorious sunrise.
This was such a lovely idea to me, because in reality, how often do I greet my children with the likes of “Did you bring your homework home?” (This is new for me because they’ve only just started back at school after homeschooling), or “why are your shoelaces undone?” or, “oh look at that jumper! Did you really have to get your dinner all the way down the front of it?”
I realise that there seems to be each greeting is clouded with an immediate kind of criticism or view of my child that he or she needs improving in one way or another.
Remembering once again the magnificent sunrise, I wonder what it would be like to greet my child same as how I greet a sunrise? I don’t look at the sunrise and think if only it could be more perfect… if that cloud would only move a little bit over to the right and if that purple tinge was a bit more pink. No, all I sense is just a breathlessness of awe at the natural beauty. I see I could greet my children as I greet the day.
For when my heart is open, my judging mind is quiet, they can equally bring that breathless awe, that sense of wonder. It’s the same wow factor that we fall in love with when we see a newborn, when our babies first arrive in the world and we gasp in wonder and love.
Although I must admit recently I looked back at the baby photos of my children thought, “gosh! What a strange looking little prunes my lovely babies were!”
In all seriousness though, we as parents, are given these eyes of love through which we can see the wonder of our children and, for me, to greet my children like I greet a beautiful sunrise as I greet my day is what keeps me a joyful parent.