Life Rocks Unschooling Conference 2013: Supporting one another.

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It’s been a week since we left Life Rocks. I’m feeling ready to start writing about it more in depth. Everyone has been asking me about it. I’ll break it down into topics and moments when they strike me.
While driving home, I have been repeatedly asking myself:
What has impacted me the most?
The answer is clear and easy.
It’s how much we need each other.
The week at Life Rocks was not only fun and inspiring and joyful, but it was healing. I could feel myself opening up and releasing fears and deep seeded beliefs in such a free atmosphere. I felt like I could walk up to anyone and ask them for help. I felt supported to express my flaws and dysfunction, and I did! I saw many other people go through this as well.
For many, the usual fears would come up surrounding our children’s behavior. There were a few “fights” in the beginning between children. I could sense within me that old feeling of “I should leave. Disconnect. Feel shame.”. Life Rocks proved for so many to be the perfect place to work through these. There were many inspiring speakers who touched on this and morning mom’s groups where it could be discussed freely with a person designate to keep the group on track. It was said repeatedly that freedom is NOT treating our children in a way that is intended to change their behavior. That’s a hard one to learn, especially if your child is aggressive.
But what do you mean? Do we accept their bad behaviors? Oh, it’s so much deeper than that. It’s about acknowledging where someone is at and loving them regardless. It’s about being our authentic selves regardless of another’s actions. It’s about offering clear and open support for the child, or anyone. Forcing someone into joy or peace is NOT freedom. I learn to live this mostly with my acknowledging words and with silence. I am loving being there with my child and understanding and I can say peacefully “You really wanted to smash that window with a rock.” And he looks at me and nods and cries.
I don’t feel that I’ve totally developed these thoughts. I mean what do you do when there is danger? You stop it. You change the outcome, right? I’ve learned that I don’t really need rules or guidelines. I can take each moment at a time and ask it “what do you need from me?”
These revelations come when in an open and beautiful coming together of love and freedom. It happened. It felt so natural. It felt safe.
I told people things that I’ve never spoken and they did the same. We had moments of tears and stress and releasing “what do I do now?!?” Because it is not always easy or comfortable to take children from home and put them with strangers and foreign foods and activities. We worked through it and it created bonds that will continue to grow and last a life time. We know how we are all going through a lot of the same stuff. It’s not easy to be different. Or rather, it hasn’t been easy. But we’re working to make freedom and joy easy. Future generations won’t have to fight for it because it will be common and feel natural.
These Life Rocks feelings have translated into all of life as we journey home. We’ve been meeting people along the way and I am continuing to share wonderful connections. We’ve stayed with two Unschooling families. One which we met at the conference an another that I met online. I’m so in awe of their generosity and openness.
As I write this, I am seeing a mom point to one of those huge, chemical ridden hotel make-your-own waffles and she tells her child “Eat this or you’re not swimming!” And “People won’t like you if you talk like that.”
I breathe and smile at her. I can appreciate the journey it takes and I can see her pain and fear. I can also see her kind intent and human nature.
It really makes me think about how much we need to fully support and love one another.

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