Grateful for Children
Although teaching children gratitude is extremely important, I am reflecting this moment on how grateful I am for the children that have been and will most certainly always be in my life.
One of the spiritual teachers, gurus, I look to and love dearly is Neem Karoli Baba. He said that children are our greatest teachers. They are so absolutely in the moment and usually bring life back to simple joy. Most children love unconditionally and it is impossible to feel anything but happiness in those moments when a child is loving you.
I spent many, many years taking care of children in the way of raising, babysitting, as roommates and as surrogate sisters and brothers. There were also many years where I spent time with children in foster homes, homes for abused children and babies born addicted to various drugs. I cared for babies with AIDS, watched healthy children slowly die. Sick children enjoy every single moment of life. Play with kids who had been physically maimed and sexually traumatized. Each and every single one of them shared a piece of themselves with me in those moments. I remember all of them. I remember physically feeling the energy of love actually poring from my body as I just held a baby who needed to be held.
These days I am an ‘auntie’ to many young kids as all my friends and their younger siblings are having kids. Again I can appreciate them so distinctly and have such gratitude for the continued lessons I learn from them. Patience is a big one for me. Letting my heart remain open is another one. If I am in the moment with my nieces and nephews I can’t be anything other then those things.
The spiritual path I am on is designed to help let go of attachments and bring one closer to enlightenment (or your true self I believe), which is part of being able to truly see our interconnectedness and interdependence as human beings. More than anything or anyone else, it is children who have led me to question my own nature and deepen my appreciation for the mystery of life.