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Spirit & Parenting

Summertime and the Living is Easy

The title of this article comes from a song from the opera Porgy and Bess by George Gershwin. It is one of my all time favorites. Besides being a beautiful song, it also relates a feeling that is dear to my heart:

Summer time and the livin' is easy,
Fish are jumpin'
An' the cotton is high.
Oh yo' daddy's rich, an' yo' ma is good lookin'
So hush, little baby, don' yo' cry.
One of these mornin's
You goin' to rise up singin'
Then you'll spread your wings an' you'll take the sky.'
But till that mornin' ther's a nothin' can harm you
With Daddy an' Mammy standin' by.

If we can capture the above expressed feeling as parents and give our children a sense of a safe, serene, and lush peacefulness, it can give them a place to return to which can help them know a sense of bliss and soulfulness.

We need to be able to connect and reconnect with a part of ourselves that is bliss in order to feel soul and to remember our real purpose in life. We need this and our children need this.

Therefore, it is wise for us to consider our summer and perhaps to save time for hours relaxing on a beach or by a lake or pond. Immerse ourselves in nature (water, earth, woods, mountains, etc.), a wonderful book, sitting, walking, music, art or whatever brings bliss. Sharing these things with children can be one of the great joys of parenting.

One of my most dear memories is swimming at our "camp" with relatives, friends or neighbor children while our parents sat on the beach chatting. Once in a while a parent would come in the water, which we all loved, and let us jump off their shoulder or swim through their legs or just give us some sort of attention. I remember going to sleep on the porch in the balmy evening (often with friends or relatives) to the music of the frogs with the stars blinking above. Ahh, Bliss!

Yes, summer is a time to garden, care for the lawn, vacation and party, but let us remember that it is also for safe, slow, relaxing bliss.