My daughter loves bubbles; in fact, I’ve also reignited my love for them through her.
They’re so simple, pure, transparent—all attributes I admire.
She plays with the bubbles as they float along before they hit the ground and burst into tiny molecules, which of course delivers the best sound in the world—her adorable giggle.
I have learned so much in the two years my daughter has accompanied me on this journey so far. She’s definitely taught me more than I’ve taught her. But these little lessons come in the simplest of forms, and I know that if I’m not being mindful—if I’m truly not there with her—they pass me by.
Yesterday we were both so caught up in the bubbles; we were truly there with each other in one of those beautiful moments. But being present, I also noticed my “self talk.”
I’ve done a lot of work on my self talk—I’ve studied plenty on the subject and have done plenty of work to talk to myself with more care and love. I’ve even developed a mantra for the end of a practice to give myself a little hug and say: “Gina I forgive you and I love you.”
When I said that to myself, the change was clear. But like a lot of things, my practice has changed and evolved to include the things that I need at the moment, and somehow I forgot about my mantra.
I often talk to others about their self talk, and the limiting beliefs it creates. I tell them that no one else creates these limiting beliefs for them and that they need to treat themselves with more compassion and love.
I need to take a spoonful of my own medicine.
So when it was my turn to blow bubbles so my daughter could chase them, I couldn’t get any bubbles out and said, “Silly Mammy,” without a second thought.
Then came my daughter, who even though she is only two, may someday become a champion bubble blower.
After one or two failed attempts she said, “Silly me.”
“No, darling, you’re not silly. Just try again and I’m sure you can get it.”
I could hear myself pleading with her to be nicer to herself, to not call herself names, no matter how harmless they may seem. I want her to love herself truly. I want her to see herself through my eyes. I want her to feel the love for herself that I feel for her. I want her to have a pure belief in herself.
As I heard myself saying this, it hit me like a ton of bricks—I need to treat myself with more love and compassion. I believe that she can change the world, but why don’t I believe that I can change the world in my own way?
That simple moment in which we were so caught up in each other taught me to reflect again on my self talk, to look at my limiting beliefs and use my own words to overcome this.
To create more love and compassion in the world, we really do need to start with ourselves.
Time to reintroduce my mantra: Gina, I forgive you and I love you.
Author: Gina Dunlevy
Editor: Evan Yerburgh