Voice: low

There are a couple of things I can do to keep myself in the calm mode: keep my voice low and keep my voice slow. When I start to get triggered, my voice starts getting…hmmm…. strident? (some might say “bitchy”). When I can hear my voice getting shrill, it gets higher in pitch. So I use my voice as a measuring instrument: when my voice starts climbing, I either consciously lower it, or leave the room. I listen to the pitch. Shrill is not the way I want to go! I think of Marlon Brando playing the Godfather: what power and control in whispering and making people lean in. I want to be that much in control of myself, so “in charge” that I never, NEVER have to yell. We experiment with using “Papa Bear voices” — especially low-toned voices, spoken slowly. It’s funny – we laugh! and there’s no...
read more

Getting comfortable with discomfort

It’s a funny thing about life: it’s teaching me things all the time if I just stop and listen. Back when my sons were about 8 and 10 years old, they used to want to wrestle with each other. I remember one afternoon when I was cooking dinner, and I started to hear some rough-housing escalation in the living room: voices raising, energy level rising. I heard some pushing and tangling going on out there. I stalked out into the living room, shouting, “Stop it! Stop it, now!” They were on the floor, wrapped up around each other and they looked up at me — and the look on their faces wasn’t the extreme-battle-thirst-for-blood-anger look I was expecting, but perplexion: “huh, Mom…?” Oh, crap. It was me that was uncomfortable with what they were doing; they were fine. Oh, crap: this was MY problem, not theirs. As a parent in a recent class asked, “Who’s crap is this?” This was definitely MY crap, my problem, my getting triggered, and so I decided right then and there to get comfortable with discomfort, since it was holding me back. More on this topic soon. Any thoughts? Oh, and yeah, “Wrestling happens...
read more

Fave parenting technique

One of my favorite parenting techniques: “Sure.” Sprinkle generously: “Sure!” “suuure…”  “sure.” I really like my parenting when I “sure” a...
read more

Parentcraft defined

PARENTING: late 12c., from O.Fr. parent (11c.), from L. parentem (nom. parens) “father or mother, ancestor,” noun use of prp. ofparere “bring forth, give birth to, produce,” from PIE base *per- “to bring forth” (see pare). Began to replace nativeelder after c.1500. The verb is attested from 1660s. The verbal noun parenting is first recorded 1959 (earlier term had been parentcraft, 1930). (http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?search=parent&searchmode=none)   Parentcraft: what a great term! There is a distinct talent, skill, ART to parenting. Even the word ‘craft’ evolved from ‘strength and power’ to ‘art, science, talent’ – just like parenting moves from strength (physical and mental) when kids are small, to ‘art, science and talent’ when kids are teens. Skill also includes……….fun! This blog is about all that: the art, science, talent, skill, fun of parentcraft....
read more