“My mom forgot to pack my lunch today,” the girl said. I was dropping my son off at school, and a little girl started a conversation with me out of the blue.
She was about 7. She had a can of Coke in her hand, and she was sipping it with a straw, and a packet of Jelly Tots in the other hand, nearly empty.
I asked the girl, “Did your mom give you lunch money for the tuck shop?”
“Yes, but I’ve spent it now,” she answered, showing me the Coke and the sweets.
My stomach turned, and I felt an anxiety I hadn’t felt for years. I asked her, “Won’t you be hungry by lunchtime?” She shrugged and walked away.
I went to work. By the time I arrived at my office, I was starving.
Was it the little girl’s hunger I was feeling, or my own? It didn’t really matter. I needed food, and now.
Outside our office building is a small caravan that sells steak and pap for R35, so I ordered and ate it. I felt better physically, but not emotionally. Why?
I had forgotten to pack my own lunch that morning. Usually I make myself a tupperware container with rice, meat, and vegetables. I’m being frugal and saving money, and it’s also a way for me to get food that really suits my body (pap is not great for me, and I’m not sure what they put in the gravy, sometimes it gives me a tummyache).
Inside my heart, there was more going on, so I sat with it for a minute.
When I heard the girl saying, “My mom forgot to pack my lunch today,” my judgement rose up full blast. What kind of a mother forgets to pack her kid’s lunch?
Well, to be honest, a mother like me: in a rush, super busy, overwhelmed, not perfect.
I had forgotten to pack my own lunch for myself. What kind of a person doesn’t feed herself properly?
Someone who serves others before herself – I’d certainly packed a lunch for my son; I’d even prepared it the night before, with his favorite fruits, celery sticks, crackers, and some special chocolate biscuits I thought he would enjoy.
Someone who doesn’t take the time to care for herself. Yes. That hit home.
I made the connection:
I was judging the little girl’s mother, but to my own Inner Child, I WAS that “neglectful” mother.
We each have two characters inside of us: Inner Child and Inner Parent.
Inner Child: no matter how old you are, a part of you is still 3 years old or 5 years old. Wanting love, wanting acknowledgement, wanting attention, wanting to be rewarded.
Inner Parent: whether you have biological children or not, part of you acts as a mother or father (or both): deciding what’s OK, what’s allowed, what’s too expensive, what the priorities are.
When the little girl at school took her lunch money and bought the Coke and sweets and ate them before 8:00, maybe she was satisfying the cravings of her Inner Child to give herself something special, possibly because she was angry with her mother. But what good would that do in the long run?
When I realized I had forgotten my own lunch, and I bought pap and steak, I was acting as a responsible Inner Parent: I made myself get food, I took care of business, I spent a little money but not too much.
The problem is that our Inner Child and our Inner Parent are often in conflict.
Who wants the shiny new shoes? The Inner Child.
Who says, “It would be better to pay the bills first.” The Inner Parent.
Negotiating between the two is a tricky business, but here’s the secret I’ve found to work – giving each one of them a voice is crucially important.
At least let the Inner Child SAY what she wants, and write it down. Make a wish list. Promise her you’ll work for those shiny shoes.
At least let the Inner Parent get things ORGANIZED so that she can relax a bit and not freak out. Then tell her, “OK, it’s all done now. That’s enough.”
Then there can be more balance. Like the saying goes, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.”
All Inner Parent and no Inner Child makes life excruciatingly dry and boring. All Inner Child and no Inner Parent is a dangerous path to debt, ill health, and losing work.
What’s your healthy percentage of Inner Parent to Inner Child?
Mine’s about 80/20.
Would you like to ask your angels how to care better for your Inner Child? How often to listen to your Inner Parent?
Let’s figure this out together.
Hit reply and we’ll book you in for a session.
The ten-question landline session is currently US $175 or R 1750. At the end of 2017, I’m going to eliminate the South African rands pricing and go with only dollar pricing. South Africans, you know what that means in terms of the exchange rate: better book before Xmas.
Reply to this email, and Charlotte the manager will help you choose your time and date!
I look forward to finding out what your angels want to say to you!
Wishing you balance between playtime and worktime, a healthy lunch, a feeling of being deeply loved and guided, and miracles in your everyday life!