When our first daughter came into the world, something showed up right alongside her that I never expected. Oh sure, there were beautiful gifts and home cooked meals and unending well-wishes, but something else entered my life as well.
It’s not as though I didn’t worry prior to becoming a mother, but parenthood took it to a whole other level. Now with three kids, I‘ve found the opportunities to worry don’t exactly decrease. They only increase…especially as kids start driving!
The truth is that worry can plague us, control us, and even define us…especially as mothers. In fact, some of us define ourselves by the degree of worry we carry around.
“I’m just so stressed!” is what we tell each other.
Stress is seen as a badge of honor by many. The more stressed I am, the more busy I must be, and the more valuable I am in this world. In reality, stress is just a bucket that our culture has used to lump together everything that worries us, and at the bottom of that heavy bucket is our faithful friend…FEAR. We’re fearful that everything won’t go just right for our kids, and somehow they won’t be set up to win or have the best possible experience in life.
The greatest gift we can offer our children is our presence, and yet, worrying robs us of being in the moment.
Mary Engelbright writes, “Worrying won’t empty tomorrow of its troubles, it empties today of its strength.”
Epictetus challenges the reality of what we’re actually worried about when he wrote, “Man is not worried about real problems, so much as by his imagined anxieties about real problems.”
If I would have known how much I was going to WORRY as a mother, I’m not sure I would have had three kids! Thankfully, we don’t think this way when we are young. We’re excited to become parents and have no clue of the unending opportunities to worry that are in front us. We do our best, until one day your child says something so profound and sensible that it has you re-evaluating your identity as a parent, which has been so much ingrained in worry.
Back to Hannah – our first born
This week, as we were having an after-dinner conversation with the family, I brought up (again) my concern about how she was handling a situation in her life. I wanted to ensure that she was doing everything she could to avoid falling into an old pattern that would not serve her well.
With her eyes full of wisdom and frustration, she said, “But Mom, your WORRY is really worrying me! I’m having anxiety over the fact that you’re worried about me.”
I was caught off guard.
She continued, “I’m not worried….Why should you be? I’ve worked really hard to get to this place, and I’m not going to mess it up. I feel like you don’t trust me”.
I started to see how I had weaved a web of worry around her in an effort to protect her from the challenges of our world. Not only was I impacted by my own worry, but now she was!
Is it possible that you’ve weaved a web of worry? Do you feel stuck and unable to break free from all the things that might go wrong in your life or in the lives of those you love? What if that web of worry is actually impacting your physical health?
I’d love to help you untangle that web of worry and find freedom in your mind and body.
Starting Wednesday, October 6th at 5pm PT, I’m hosting a four-week online workshop called “Embody Your Empowerment”, and I want to invite you to join me for this life-changing experience. Women are seeing tremendous results, and I know you’ll love meeting others who are on a similar journey.
Learn more at www.MariaMahboubi.com/Empower.