The eyes of our children are upon us
Do not look away
For in their eyes we see ourselves reflected
It is we they save
Let them draw us in for they hold the keys
To the treasures we only dream about
Take them by the hand
And let them lead us
For in their innocence
Are the wonders we desire
Beware no harm comes to them –
They walk with angels
And shine their brilliance
And touch us with their gentleness
Oh take delight in them
They are free
They break our chains that bind us to the past
And show the promise of a new day
The eyes of our children are upon us
Do not look away
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Read an Excerpt
There is a Child in each of us who longs to be honored and seen,
THIS IS GOD'S CHILD!
This is the Child who was last, and now shall be first.
We can create a world that is safe for ALL God's Children.
Finding My Voice
I didn't always feel I had a voice. Contrary to how things appeared I felt quite invisible for a major portion of my life. But I see now it was how things were supposed to be. For when you are 'invisible' you can be quite observant - of people, of life, of the way things happen.
I am in no way a victim. I had issues. I had lessons. But I've dealt with them, am dealing with them. It's a continual process. It's called LIFE. It doesn't end just because we have reached adulthood. I learned the valuable insights those issues and lessons brought me, and continue to bring me. I learned that I could change. I learned that Life is about change.
I have a voice, just like everyone else. Now that is a revelation! I have often gone into a library or a book store and just looked at all the books - wow! Every one of those books represents someone's voice - someone's experience or someone's fantasy. Someone's idea that came to fruition. It is awesome and intimidating at the same time. Other people surely had important things to say. But me?
I can let you be the judge of how important they are, I just feel they need to be said. Not that these things haven't been said before. I bring no new formulas, just perhaps a different way to see things, a different way to connect the experiences of our lives. Another voice having courage to speak about issues that have heart and meaning for me.
All human beings are expressive beings, because essentially we are creative beings. My expression is words, something that surprises and delights me. I love to write; remember when I decided that I would write as a means to express my emerging voice.
All human beings wish to be seen and heard; honored for our right to be. While on paper we cherish those words in practice those rights must be proven. Back when our country was founded, those "rights" were intended for just some. As our country was being explored and settled, we understood those rights to mean 'some deserve to be here more than others'. More than indigenous people living here for thousands of years before we ever set foot on this continent.
I grew up in this country, in New Jersey, of Italian/Irish/German heritage. I went through parochial elementary school, public high school, and two years of college in New York City before moving to California where I eventually obtained a B.A. degree. More than anything else I learned was this: "History is written by those in power."
What occurs to me is that over the past twenty-five years or more, History has been re-written, and that has unsettled us more than we care to admit. Truth always comes out, and what has come out has slowly and painfully made us more aware, has eroded our confidence and trust in the people we were told we could trust, and has set us adrift from our moorings. In short, we have lost our direction. We can't find our heart, or rather, it's buried under the pain of our grief. We certainly don't remember joy; was it possible we ever felt it? And after years of constant bombardment by advertisers we're not even sure just whose life we're living. We're in a mess!
Each time we are made aware of the corruption, the injustice, the senseless acts of people we previously trusted, we come undone. But things must come apart before they can heal and come back together whole. There is always great chaos before there is great harmony, so I am hopeful.
We are sadly out of balance. We need to call a halt to the way we are living. We need to stop consuming more than we need and hoarding more than we use. It is wisdom that says "our strength becomes what we focus our attention on". We need to refocus.
When people are not honored for who they are and their right to be, they battle. It's the survivor mode. They not only have to prove their rights, they also have to get in someone's face to be heard. Honestly, as a woman in this society, I've had to battle. Our Society doesn't value women. Many societies around the world do not honor women; do not see them as equal to men – equal in value. Why do we have to prove that? Why do we have to get in someone's face to be heard? And then get blasted for unlady-like behavior? Even our behavior has become dysfunctional, and we don't even know it. We laugh when we ought to be crying. We are numb; we can't even feel anymore.
I've been angry. And I'm a white woman! My rage has not caused me to kill anyone, but I thought about it. Instead, we turn the rage back on ourselves, proving we are worthy in over-extension patterns that declare we can do it. Do what?
I always wondered who had this right to decide how my life should be? Then I learned I had "choices". Women have choices? Yeah, women have choices. All human beings have choices.
My mother never told me or taught me that I had value. She assumed that Society would take care of me because I was white. We white women come to the game late. It's not a 'white' society. It's a 'white man's society'. And no woman is valued. I can already hear disagreement. But even if you're a woman reading this who was valued, there are too many more who weren't, and aren't. And if you are a man, especially a white man reading this, I hope you do or have done some profound soul-searching.
We can end the debate over which race is superior. Science tells us that there are no differences between the races genetically. The only differences lie in "opportunity". Opportunity to experience life, liberty, justice, and happiness.
I haven't much liked the patterns that emerged as I worked to prove my worth. Patterns that have led to aggressiveness, gross over-extension, weariness, burn- out, echoing words every good American must have had drummed into them since birth: "You want to get ahead? Work harder!"
Yes, there's been a double standard of conduct between men and women. It pervades all aspects of our lives. If we knew it in our personal lives, it makes sense that it would spill over into the business world.
Women have had to fight for economic equality. It is fair that women and men be paid equally for the same work. The Women's Movement was fair and just. Women thought their voices would be counted when they were on an equal par with men economically. Essentially, they followed the rules: Money talks, so fight for equal pay and you'll have a voice. You know, I don't much like the rules; who made them anyway? They aren't fair, in fact they're 'stacked' against most of us ever getting ahead. It will take a long time this way before the barriers break down to allow women their voices and their places in the world.
"Work a little harder, Honey." I'm not adverse to hard work. I am adverse to a treadmill of constant doing, constant proving. It attacks my worth, tries to convince me I am not enough.
Nope, I don't like the rules, don't much like the game. It doesn't work for everyone, so ultimately it works for no one. Could we just stop a minute and think about what we are doing – to ourselves, to each other, to our earth?
I suppose the only thing that has sustained me over the years is that I have always believed in love; that love is most important; that we have a great capacity to love, we just don't know how. How do we understand something very few of us have had first- hand experience with – true love. We all wish it (be honest). True love is unconditional love, and very few of us ever experienced that! We do keep trying. Well I kept trying.
In my thirties, I had two children. Boys. I thought God must have given me boys so that I could raise them to be a different kind of man. Somehow, intuitively I knew I must raise them to be 'partners'.
I had progressed far enough in my own issues to realize that I made a far better parent in my thirties. I had more confidence, more awareness. I was reasonably happy. But I had ventured into parenting only slightly prepared. Aside from a couple of courses in college having to do with child development, the only education I had was the one I picked up through my own parents.
Right here, I'll have to say that I do love my parents; that I am grateful for all they did for me. I acknowledge that they did the best they could; they too were products of their own experiences and the mindset of the times in which they lived. I understand all that. In my understanding, I also am aware that they passed on some very dysfunctional patterns. And I can forgive them their shortcomings. I can see all of them, and that's why I can love them and let go of what no longer works.
I'm not sure it's just been my experience, or if this is the Time when we finally "get it" and do an about-face. My children changed my life. They turned me around, and showed me what was important, and what I had forgotten, and I truly hope that I shall never be the same! I thought I would teach them and truthfully, I have, but they have taught me more! Are we not all teachers and students? Yes, we are.
We live in a violent society. 'Shoot 'um up', just like in the movies. Declare war, hey, it's good for the economy, right? We've lost our ability to talk to each other when we disagree. In truth, I don't believe we ever really knew how to communicate, not when the 'rules' say you have to get angry before someone will listen.
Anger unchecked becomes violence. And violence, at its deepest level, is a cry from the soul. Why are our children becoming violent? They are desperately trying to get our attention, and they are resorting to what they have seen adults use and works.
I'd like to put forth some things to look at in a different way and things to ponder and talk about, in a dialogue not a debate. What we are willing to look at can change.
And no matter what anyone says, the world can change - one person at a time if need be. I've been called a "bliss bunny", and lots of other things for having too optimistic an attitude. Told to "get real". Told I'm not practical. A Pollyanna. If you remember, Pollyanna turned around a whole town!
I've been told I have no 'common sense'. And those people were right ... ... ... I have 'uncommon sense'.
Here's the deal: I don't much care what you call me. My self-worth is intact, and whatever you think you can dig up on me to discredit me probably won't stop me. I'd rather try other ways than continue the way we are going.
I'm quite visual and in my mind's eye I seen "patterns". It looks like we are truly headed off the edge of the world! We keep consuming and prizing our technology over preserving and thinking with our hearts. Thank God the world is round! (as opposed to flat) Which means that 1. We won't fall off. 2. We come back around to where we started. Will we be wiser and make different choices, or continue virtual "Groundhog's Day"? 3. As we march our own selves to victory, we must also turn around to help those behind us. It's the looping back that closes the circle and guarantees we won't fall off the edge, and insures that we all move forward together. If you can visualize this, you will have understood a very important pattern.
We are out of balance, way out of balance. It's no longer acceptable, as a people who prize our minds, to discard Truth because it does not fit our Western ideologies. It is from Eastern ideologies that we learn every living organism is made up of masculine and feminine energy, the yin and yang. Our children know this – ask them! Our masculine energy has dominated, and we must acknowledge the feminine energy, honor it and let it bring us back into balance. ... in ourselves, our society, our world.
What do we honor that is feminine? We have gotten so polarized, especially in this country, that we believe men are masculine and women are feminine, and we don't understand that we human beings have both energies. What we don't understand is that all thought (ideas, inspiration) creativity itself, originates from the feminine.
But "men are from Mars, and women are from Venus"! Some men, and some women. But I do believe that men can have hearts, and woman can be strong and have a voice.
We call the earth Mother Earth, yet we defile her. Who decided it was O.K. to concrete over every inch of land, cutting down trees, destroying natural habitats, not only for animals but also for the natives already living on the continent? Where is it written that anyone has that right?
We do not honor Mother anything! Beginning with the earth. Remember the T.V. commercial about the butter – "It's not nice to fool Mother Nature"? No, it's not nice and she can't be fooled. The joke is on us! We will lose unless we change the way we live.
Truth is Uncomfortable
Something happens when you discover you have a voice. It's like the dam breaks and you can't hold back any longer. People say you talk too much, but I question that. Yes, you might become slightly unbalanced in the other direction, but that's only for a time, and so, with practice, you adjust. I don't think it's really that you talk too much, it's what you are saying that disturbs people, especially if what you are saying is Truth.
I've been advised to 'say things in a non-combative way', I've been advised to keep silent by other women who haven't yet found their own voices. I've been told "don't rock the boat"! Though I truly strive to communicate for understanding and don't wish to offend, you just can't tell the Truth and not make people uncomfortable! And that is the truth!
What is my intention? To find Truth. And when Truth presents Itself, you move toward it, like magnets. I have a passion for Truth which translates into a passion for Life - all Life. All Life is sacred.
You can decide for yourself. You can say it's just my opinion. But Truth resonates deep in the soul, and it will wrench your gut and stir your insides. I don't make you feel uncomfortable. I'm just the messenger. (History shows we shoot the messenger, which could also cause me to feel uncomfortable.) Truth makes you feel uncomfortable. Why? Because it challenges every belief you hold about yourself, your world, and what you are doing in it. It challenges the status-quo.
I often think about Rev. Martin Luther King and the monumental task put before him. His conviction that equality was meant for all people certainly made some people very uncomfortable. He confronted the belief systems that prevailed at the time, and he challenged them in a non- violent way. He understood that equality, liberty, and pursuit of happiness were fundamental rights accorded to all people, not just white people. This was his Work, and he gave his life that all God's children would enjoy these rights.
Martin Luther King was very clear that the Civil Rights Movement was not just for black people. This Movement was for people of all races. No one is free until we all are free. No one. I hear Dr. King's words: "how long?" It's been too long. No one should have to fight. No one should have to be in someone's face to be seen. No one should have to resort to violent means to get attention. No one. .... especially our children.
Here's an uncomfortable Truth: Our children are desperately trying to get our attention. That children resort to violence is our collective shame.
Here's another Truth: Usually we can't relate to things that happen in the world until those things happen to us. We can no longer say that violence would never occur in our communities.
Excerpted from "The Eyes of Our Children"
Copyright © 2017 Laura D. Distarce.
Excerpted by permission of Balboa Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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