It occurred to me, the other day, why I have children. Some reasons are obviously self-serving and easily identifiable…for example, having someone to love me unconditionally and having someone to grow old with and now that I am in The Blogoshere, having someone to keep me up-to-date with technology.

But a positive, less apparent reason, centres around the role they play in pushing me towards the ‘better’ me, the less self-righteous and omniscient me.

Mother doesn’t always know best.

For example…last week’s Blog Post was not going to include the real and graphic image of me fully engaged in escapist behaviour. I intended to merely create a tidy, unrevealing list of my behaviours. 4 items: British Mystery Shows, FreeCell, Food and Alcohol. I did not feel anxious or exposed by this list because it didn’t reveal the depth nor the intensity of my efforts to escape. In the readers’ mind I may have watched just one show, while I played one game, while I ate one slice, while I drank one G and T.  While ambiguity prevailed, my ego remained intact.

But when my Editor (tech-savvy brilliant daughter) read my post before I published it, she asked the one question I didn’t want asked. “What happened that prompted this Post? You have to show not tell when you write!”

Hyperventilating, I answered, “No way! That would be embarrassing and anyway, I’m already at my Blog limit of 1000 words.”

And here is the blessing in having children. My daughter not only knows me better than most, but does what all children do instinctively…she called me on my ego and my lie! She was right on both counts! Blog Posts have no defined length, but my ego goes on forever!

The greatest gain I felt from last week’s challenge, Changing the Power of My Escape Artist, came from revealing my behaviour, not in list form, but in story form. If I had attended an Escape Artists Anonymous meeting, such a revelation would have been simple for me, because I would have felt safe(ego intact) in a group of like-behavioured individuals. But to reveal escapist behaviours to the world at large, initially bruised my ego, but I soon felt surprisingly liberated. I became aware that my need to ‘look good’ imprisoned me behind bars built by my fear of other people’s perceptions. In accepting that I may now be perceived as a loser…my worst fear…I was no longer held captive by that fear! Doing the work of the soul, definitely damages the ego, but it is becoming apparent that living a less egocentric life frees me to experience the mystery, the awe-inspiring synchronicity of my world.

Repression and denial of that which embarrasses me, not only zaps life force, but is a major factor in the cyclic nature of addiction.The vagaries of life will always present me with unwelcome events. If my reaction is to escape this reality, and then feel horrid about methods used to escape, what choice is there but to try to escape again in hopes of dousing the feelings of shame. A Merry-Go-Round called Denial. But the cycle is brought to an abrupt end when I stop feeling badly about escaping. So thank you to my daughter/editor and to all of you who bear witness to my truth.



“The living self has one purpose only: to come into its own fullness of being, as a tree comes into full blossom, or a bird into spring beauty, or a tiger into lustre” DH Lawrence

I was reminded of some wisdom I learnt from my dear Herbalist, Annette. She suggested I plant a bulb in a jar in the dark of winter and watch it transform into a blossom by spring.

The purpose of this exercise was to show me how slowly transformation occurs. No matter how many times I bribed the bulb with treats, threatened it with punishment, or read it excerpts from The Power Of Positive Thinking, it progressed excruciatingly slowly. The salient point being, it did progress.

Of course this lesson was challenging for me because it put into question everything I believed about personal growth. I believed thoroughly in the principle of Mind Over Matter, which is the power of the mind to control and influence the body and the physical world. For example, if I had the desire to become more compassionate in my interactions with my friends, I would just act more compassionately…easy as that. So any thoughts, feelings or behaviours that were contrary to compassion, were just ignored, stuffed away, and repressed. Mind over matter! But transformation needs the death of the old, the planting of the new and the long, slow period of gestation, before new growth manifests.

Today, when I was enjoying a vase of blossoms from my garden, another profound truth flooded into my being. The potential for the blooms exists in the seed. The seed was not in the ground with a list of attributes it wanted for its flower. 

“Let me see…I think I’ll be black with white polka dots this year…and I’m tired of the tear drop look, so I think I will look like that tulip I saw in last month’s Home and Garden.” I’m laughing at how preposterous this sounds. I accept unequivocally that the bloom on a fuchsia will look as expected, with negligible variation.

 And yet I have trouble accepting that the same principles hold true for me. So this week, the 7th of 52 will centre around me accepting the attributes I was given, instead of trying to be a tulip, when I was born to be a fuchsia!