“We do not believe in ourselves until someone reveals that deep inside us something is valuable, worth listening to, worthy of our trust, sacred to our touch. Once we believe in ourselves we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight or any experience that reveals the human spirit.”
Someone very dear to me is expecting her first child and emailed me recently with concerns. They were pretty much the same concerns I had when I was pregnant with Seven, and they came from an overly close reading of the what to expect books and parenting websites. Those things are like tortilla chips, or IKEA. You know you shouldn’t, but once you start, you can’t stay away.
Luckily, Seven survived infancy and, consequently, I overcame my fears of maternal ineptitude. That was when I started going with my gut. And the poets. It might sound crazy, and my kids are still very young, but so far, poets have been the source of the most inspirational parenting advice I’ve come across, and ee cummings in particular.
That quote above, it is equally valid for a young child as it is for a young mother.