little buddha's.

Friday, February 10, 2012

it never ceases to amaze me,
how these little people,
little 'beings in our life,
although totally exhausting, sometimes annoying, full of energy and often frustrating as hell,
are some of our greatest teachers.
little buddha's, we'll call them.
(of course, i posed him like that, people.  bribed him with chocolate.)
the round bellies, bare feet, their intrinsic ability to live in the moment.
but unlike buddha himself,
THEY are at our disposal 24 hours a day,
the most capable teachers we'll ever have.
ones that we don't have to read about, try to understand through books, immersions, years of following like devoted disciples through the tibetan mountains,
but simply by watching and discovering THEM, 
in the here and now.
fantastic teachers,
more so than our favorite 3rd grade teacher, who just might've been a nun.
(and i wanted to be her.)
ya' heard me.  habit, black gown, hideous black orthopedic's and all.
i was GOING to be a nun because of her, an amazing teacher.
kind, energetic, gentle, filled with faith.
and the other teachers in our lives. . .
maybe our parents, an adoring aunt,
the mentors, the counselors, the guru's in the form of friends, we've had along the way.
they've been a huge part of the journey,
but THESE people.
these LITTLE people,
although goofy, uncoordinated, mentally unstable it seems (some days,)
who haven't been here NEARLY as long as we have,
with NEARLY the life experience we've had,
well, some days, they know so much more.
wise beyond their years,
with SO much to teach US. 
i remember (and i'm sure i've mentioned this somewhere in a past blog,)
looking down at jack the minute after he was born.
(ah, the days when i could tan.)
his little tired, beady eyes looking up at me.
and i just got this overwhelming sense, that he knew something.
and old soul in a new life.
that he knows.  he's an infant, but he's been somewhere and has so much to teach me.
THEY are amazing teachers.
in the most harrowing of moments,
can teach us patience and calm we never knew existed,
not by THEIR reaction,
but our ability to summon up just a little bit more, FOR them.
our few short days in the hospital figuring out jack's seizures,
not ONCE did he complain, ask why, throw a fit, blame. . .
(like so many of us would do.)
granted he had a Wii at his fingertips 24 hours a day,
but you know what i mean.
he tolerated, made due, accepted.
they can spend hours on end throwing up,
not ONCE complaining.  NOT.  ONCE.
not necessarily embracing it, but allowing it, without question,
unlike their adult counterparts might.
we adults, so quick to combat, judge, fight, defend and run from everything,
could take a few lessons from these little balls of sweetness.
who view everyone and everything,
despite their low vantage point,
with curiosity instead of judgement,
appreciation (most times,) instead of annoyance.
excitement instead of skepticism.
maybe timid and shy at first,
but able to look past it.
like us, they don't always like what they hear.
they'll push back, kick and scream, wail and whine,
but they move on quickly.  don't hold grudges. 
forgive readily and love unconditionally.
most of their early years
are confined to car seats, booster seats and stroller seats,
but eventually, and much to our dismay,
they start moving.  up and out.  and they do it slowly.  patiently.
truly reveling in their well deserved freedom. . .and rightly so.
finally able to live out their innate longing for independence,
their natural quest for adventure, 
even if it's to cross the street, without a hand,
as we watch from a short distance, 
ensuring their safety.
and that is our job.  to love, guide and watch over.  not be the kid.
not be their friend, their best bud, 
until the time is right.
allowing them, in the meantime, to form their OWN friendships,
learn the basics of loyalty, trust and love in the ways only the bonds of friendship can teach.
and they do it with their whole heart.
but sometimes, it's SO fun.  SO invigorating to live life as they do.
even if just incorporating a little piece of their teachings, in each new day.
yes, they have high expectations (like us,)
always want more,
and a serious lack of appreciation for all the great things we do for them,
all the stops we pull, 
blood, sweat and tears we shed on their behalf,
but we can all agree it's worth it.
the things we do, working to ensure that their childhood is full of love and all the things that will help them to become the healthy, grounded adults we hope for.
providing them (and us,) opportunities to see their TRUE and unadulterated joy in the simple. 
living unencumbered by anything, because we know, this is the only time in their life,
these little creatures they get to live this way.
how often brian and i go back and forth, wanting to show them amazing things and experiences,
but forgetting,
that these little teachers, don't need as much as we do.
they are simple beings.
finding the joy and beauty in the smallest of things.
even if it's seeing the bottom of the hill from the back of the sled.
that for them, is enough.

their unabashed love and and enjoyment in their physical bodies.
their obsession with nakedness and physical freedom.
no discrepancies between how they see themselves, 
and how WE see them.  perfectly imperfect.  and the most beautiful beings we've ever seen.
 (i had to show this pic.  terrible quality, but totally grace.  she loves herself.  and i have no idea how she knows to pose like that.  didn't get it from me.)
their sense of humor, wit and shamlessness.
(man bits are covered.  we're good.)
their innate ability to pretend, create and dream,
experiment, try on new hats,
so easily and so often without fear, doubt
and yet so easily willing to ask for help or comfort.
as they get older, we know, these enlightening qualities, start to fade,
just as it has for many of us,
as they become more aware of the big scary world, the risks, the fears.
but wouldn't it be great to hold down their innocence a little longer?
all these amazing characteristics about them that remind us daily,
how WE should be living?
in the meantime,
we are on the mend.
clearly, because tiger beat is out, in full effect.
if she can sit up to look at that, we're good.
(best dad ever bought her this with a slew of coloring books and a brand new box of crayola's.  her fave.)  nothing says love and nursing back to health like untouched crayons and selena gomez.

we're slowly but surely working to salvage the fun days missed at school,
in preparation for valentines' day, gracie's favorite holiday.
the girl loves hearts.
i have to wait until her stomach's strong enough, 
to tell her we're making valentines' cut-out cookies this weekend.
she might hurl with excitement.
anyway, i digress.
my writing on this comes from a recent quote, 
from my new fave book.
"Children are tropistic; they grow in the direction of light and attention.  That which is ignored in childhood does not develop. . ."
wanting more than anything, if i do ANYTHING right in parenting,
to respect that and these little buddha's in our lives.
to live by that, honoring and developing not just what they do, but WHO they are.
trying to see and treat life the way they do, 
bringing more joy and love in to each new day.


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