Re-Connecting With Mum and Dad

by Jennifer Smith, Registered Nurse, Maclean NSW

I have just come home after spending 9 days with my parents, younger brother and Panda (the family dog) in my childhood home. This is the longest I have been with them since moving out over 20 years ago. Over those 20 years, not only has there been physical distance between us, but also a distance had been created with our relationships. Not through the fault of anyone. We had all just let it happen that way.

For me, I had made my life so busy with travelling and socialising with friends initially, and then finally it was all about work, career and making a business. Whenever I went to Sydney for anything I would try to “fit in mum and dad”. I would go and have a meal at home or a cup of tea – always just a pop-in visit. I was too busy doing a course of some description to improve or better myself, or improve work prospects. I had such a drive to improve and impress.

Although I knew my parents well, they almost seemed like strangers at the same time. What I didn’t realise until recently, was that by distancing myself from them, I was doing that to myself.  By keeping so busy with all of this doing I was making a stranger of myself to me, too.

As I have attended Universal Medicine courses and sessions with their practitioners, I have been able to more clearly see this pattern. By gradually making more nurturing and loving changes for how I care for me, I have begun to meet me –  and discovered a Beauty-Full Woman.

Prior to my holiday at Mum and Dad’s, on the last pop-in visit we met for brunch. My family were sitting in the cafe and I was the last one to arrive. As I sat and greeted them all, I felt an overwhelming sense that I was deeply loved. It was so lovely, but deeply sad at the same time, because I had kept myself in a state that I could not see or feel that. After then, I knew that when I next had leave I had to be with my parents for more than a pop-in visit and a cup of tea.

It was like no time had passed at all. Dad and I walked in the early mornings. Mum and I went bra shopping. We ate meals together. Nothing flash, just us all being together. Yes, living with Mum and Dad, even for a short time, did bring up some childhood issues for me, but it just felt so different. I was more able to accept them just as they are and not judge them or their relationship and not react, as I would have previously. They also showed great acceptance of the changes I have been making.

I can now see how amazing my family is and the love that happens every day, rather than seeing things that I wished were other than what they are.

I am so pleased that I have got off my bum to re-establish a true relationship with my parents. I missed them when I left, in fact I now realise that it’s 20 years worth. That’s ok though, for the re-connection is on a new basis for me and I know that it will now be different for all of us.

507 thoughts on “Re-Connecting With Mum and Dad

  1. Thanks Jennifer, I enjoyed feeling the simplicity as expressed with your parents, it’s there in every activity, like shopping and meals, just being together, and in the acceptance without demands or impositions. And what a gem of wisdom this line is “I can now see how amazing my family is and the love that happens every day, rather than seeing things that I wished were other than what they are.”

  2. ‘By distancing myself from them, I was doing that to myself’ – I can very much relate to this. We can’t hold ourselves back from someone without doing that to ourselves at the same time, and we leave ourselves rather thirsty.

  3. ” As I sat and greeted them all, I felt an overwhelming sense that I was deeply loved. It was so lovely, but deeply sad at the same time, because I had kept myself in a state that I could not see or feel that. ” I wonder how many times we have dismissed these loving moments in our lives because we have been so wrapped up in our own issues.

  4. Relative to this discussion is, we start to reconnect through our gentle-ways and from there we find self-loving is so divine that others are transformed by these simple reflections. Could this be how evolution works?

  5. Many of us get stuck in blaming our parents for the way our lives have turned out to be. We point the finger and cry, but how many of us have truly looked at our patterns, our behaviours and tendencies with honesty and an openness to really understand the root? If we do that, more often than not we are likely to see that our parents are not to blame, they too have had upbringings which may have not been the most loving, they too have had a development on this planet which may not have supported them to be themselves. If we are so wise and all-knowing, why is it that we blame them when we know that this behaviour is damaging? If we know better than them, why is it that we are not acting differently?

  6. ‘I can now see how amazing my family is and the love that happens every day, rather than seeing things that I wished were other than what they are.’ Thank you for writing this, it inspires me to make the time and space to spend time with my family.

  7. ‘By gradually making more nurturing and loving changes for how I care for me, I have begun to meet me – and discovered a Beauty-Full Woman.’ This is really gorgeous and makes me realise how i can get caught up being busy and not allowing time for myself or my family.

  8. Jennifer this is such a great point to realise I hadn’t really considered it in the way you say until now “Although I knew my parents well, they almost seemed like strangers at the same time. What I didn’t realise until recently, was that by distancing myself from them, I was doing that to myself. By keeping so busy with all of this doing I was making a stranger of myself to me, too.” A great opportunity to reacquaint your self with yourself.

  9. Recently I have been reflecting on all of my relationships and how I no longer want to ‘fit people in’ but put aside time to really spend and be with them and it has felt such a lovely thing to do. It just goes to show that we are the ones that create all the ‘stress’ and ‘haven’t got time to do’ situations when really that does not need to be the case at all.

    1. It’s a great point Vicky, and I can’t help but feel it applies to other things as well, such as work and chores at home, or maybe that we approach it without the stress of time, and to be with ourselves and bring the care needed to our lives by attending to and completing tasks. It is a very different approach to spend time with ourselves and others to deepen the quality of our lives and relationships, to getting things done or fitting in time with others.

  10. Jennifer, I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your blog again as you share so much with a depth of appreciation, an understanding of what happened and hence with no blame on anyone. Your sharing is intimate in quality and allows each of us to realise the blessings that we can forget are there for us each and every day with each and every person that is in our lives.

  11. Jennifer, this is GOLD: “I can now see how amazing my family is and the love that happens every day, rather than seeing things that I wished were other than what they are.” How often do we lament about what is missing and in the process miss the blessings that lie in front of our very eyes.

  12. It really is the extraordinary in the ordinary that brings the magic to our day to day life, for those walks and talks we share with our family and friends are absolutely precious.

  13. The key is commitment to love, whatever way that means in that particular relationship, to be open (transparent to let yourself be seen and see the other), and truly there-in is what is needed.

  14. Seeing things for what they actually are and not what you want them to be is one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself and others. It is the expectations that we place on each other that does the damage.

  15. What a great way to clear old childhood issues and patterns by spending some quality time with parents. By standing back and being able to observe what comes up we can get a very different understanding of what is going on and what hurts we have held onto for many, years and possibly life times.

    1. Great point you have raised Alison, so could it be we are choosing our parents so we can look at and heal our lifetimes of hurts, because they are reflecting what is most needed to see our childhood patterns that need healing?

      1. Yes agreed but we are not taught this and so we are not aware of the amazing opportunity we have to heal very old hurts that have been with us for life times. I am learning so much from my mother even now in her very elderly years and we are both enjoying this opportunity to heal our past and appreciate and enjoy each other,. This is such a blessing and a huge thank you to Universal Medicine for showing me there is a different way to see our parents, and I know going forward that in my next lives this will change my whole understanding of family and what it means to be a parent.

    2. Thank you Alison and may I add the way we parent our-selves and others becomes one of Love when we deepen our relationships with everyone young and old and treat them as equals with the true respect and decency that we all deeply deserve.

  16. Great to hear and I almost got a bit teary myself as I feel I could have established a more intimate relationship with my parents. But at the same time it is what it is and I did what I could. .

  17. It is interesting how self-betterment and work success often leave behind the importance of nurturing the quality and the value of our family relationships.

  18. A relationship is when both sides are willing to go deeper. Sometimes one side is unwilling and that’s ok too, even if it is family, it does not mean everyone will come on board. Acceptance while not holding back ourselves is key.

  19. When we distance ourselves from someone it just means we have disconnected from ourselves. Change that and our relationships change.

    1. It feels horrible when said like that. Why on earth (literally) would we want to ‘fit-in’. Fit in with what I ask? With the lies and corruption, the games, the playing less? We are not here to fit in, rather be all the love that we are – so why not live that as our normal and let others ‘fit-in’ with us, after all it is our natural way of being.

    2. Maybe we should call “fitting in” “squashing in” because we are drastically changing and reducing ourselves for others who have already also done the same.

  20. It is the judgement part of this article that is so huge. because it is rarely talked about how we can judge our parents and their choices, thinking perhaps that we have it all sorted – the younger brighter generation. When really they are just people too, who want to feel loved and accepted for who they are just as much as anyone else does. And I love the way that you have returned to the love that you have for them just as they have always loved you.

  21. We cannot ever change another and yet there is always an opportunity to open ourselves and drop our judgements towards another. There feels such an opening to your family described in this blog.

  22. ‘What I didn’t realise until recently, was that by distancing myself from them, I was doing that to myself’. Jennifer, I have only recently come to this realisation too… how I am with others is a true reflection of how I am with myself, for how could it be any different as we are all one and come from the same source.

    1. Absoltuley Elizabeth. This is such a great reminder, and something that I know I can go deeper with myself.

  23. Imagine that, we can often blame our family members for what has not worked for us in life, rather than observing what our choices were and appreciating our choices to remain true to ourselves.

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