Transition is Hard

This is the first mantra of parenting:  Transition is hard. 

Almost every time we have a problem with our child it occurs at a transition (i.e. school to home, nap to awake, high school to college).

Yet transition is how we learn and grow (i.e. non-reader to reader, never played on a team to team-player).

Tip of the Day:  Anticipate transition and make it easier for your child.  Bring a snack, head it off at the pass with compassion.  When they are upset and angry, breathe in love and think:  “Transition is hard.”  This will center you, and it will recognize them more deeply.  It will also help them know that difficulty in transition is normal—and thus help them not feel bad about themselves when they struggle.

Keep this idea in mind for yourself as well, as we struggle through such difficult transition in our economy and our world as a whole.  Perhaps this is how we will learn and grow, but it is painful and must be recognized as so many of us are struggling very hard right now, and many of us are scared about whether or not it really is going to be okay.

A Nightmare

It is said that if your writing doesn’t keep you up at night, it won’t keep anyone else up reading it.  In that spirit I share the nightmare that awakened me at 4a.m. this morning:

A tractor-trailer truck just misses me, and my family, and crashes into a concrete truck.  A chain reaction of crashes ensue around us, and I hug my younger child, Will, expecting to die and just wanting to protect him.  A double tanker crashes right next to us; we jump out of the car and run to the corner—safe but horrified.

As a psychologist, I have learned to interpret my dreams and those of others; I share this one because (having it the first day after launching this blog), I recognize it as a collective dream.  My interpretation:  the tractor-trailer is a symbol of brick and mortar “stuff,” i.e. materialism, and it crashes into the cement truck as a symbol of “concrete” or overly literal thinking.  This cataclysm forces family (i.e. our true connections) out of the car, (i.e. out of our old way of getting around, thinking and doing), and brings us to the “corner” (i.e. the cross-roads—a symbol of choice, of opposite directions meeting.  The cross is an exceedingly ancient symbol that may commonly suggest suffering and redemption, but also the transcendent intersection of space and time).

More simply put, the big and powerful forces that swirl around us are blowing themselves up, and the family is threatened.  New thinking is called for, and we must collectively heal from the trauma of materialism gone awry.

Question of the Day:

Would you care to share a dream or nightmare that you or your child has had?



2 Responses to “Transition is Hard”

  1. Stephanie Says:

    I once had a dream that I was running after my boy – he was about two at the time – and he was running away from me down the path of the child hood place I grew up in on summer vacations in the country (not always happy times)

    I saw my boy jump into the water, and – horrified – I jumped after him swimming to catch up to him – in deepening horror, I swam deeper and deeper, my eyes open against the darkness of the deep – unable to see him – I desperately felt for him all around – and woke up frightened and relieved to find my boy sleeping in my arms.


  2. Laurie Says:

    No nightmares to speak of but must thank you for “transition is hard”. A way for me to remember for myself, my world and my son. A way to remind myself to take a deep breath.

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