What lies beneath?

Contemplation small

‘What lies behind us and what lies ahead of us are tiny matters compared to what lives within us’. Henry David Thoreau.

I heard this quote recently on TV and it raised a question in me – how true is it?  Does what has happened in our past or what will happen in our future not matter?  Or is it just that what happens inside is – how we respond, learn and grow from things matters more?

Many times I find myself consumed with what’s going on inside me on any given day – too much so.  Some people are not great at self-awareness, whilst others maybe miss the glaringly obvious as they are focusing on those tiny things that really don’t matter.
Since we’ve had our children my life has been turned upside down in many ways.  My lifestyle has changed, my friendships have changed, my priorities have changed, everything has changed.  You’re getting the pattern here – CHANGE!

It’s so easy sometimes to try to hang onto the past when those relationships and circumstances have changed.  Maybe we don’t want things to change but they do. We can also look too much to the future – what would it be like if….?  Again that can consume our thoughts and actions.

Not only does this quote apply to us as parents but also our children.  I’ve been reading ‘The Primal Wound: Understanding the adopted child’ the last few days which talks about that scar that adopted children have.  The deep, profound mark left by separation and loss from whatever the circumstances.  It is a harrowing thought but essential to consider.  Our children have a scar from their past that will always be there – the impact of that scar will change I’m sure but it will never disappear.  However, being able to help them come to terms with their lives, the past, future and what is going on inside them is vitally important and part of our job as their adoptive parents.

So as you think about your past, future and how you’ve learnt from those experiences, also remember your children – they need help to process the biggest part of this quote – to be able to make sense of what lives within!

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