by Mariola Strahlberg
Why do we assume that children today are broken and need fixing? Our starting point is always to diagnose, to give it a name, to worry, and to take them to someone who can fix them.
It reminds me of the similar situation with patients who come to my acupuncture practice and are new to natural medicine. During the first visit, they talk a lot about their lives and what doesn’t work. Very little is said about what does work unless I ask. Then they “plop” themselves on my comfortable table and wait. Sometimes they ask how many needles I will use, as if I had a crystal ball at the beginning of the treatment.
They want to be fixed and they want it fast with the least expense and effort on their part. I remind them that I am not a car mechanic, I do not fix cars, I do not fix bodies – I only help them realize that some things in them are not performing to their highest standard. Once they are aware of that, they themselves start the “getting better” process – I am just a moderator.
The same is with our children. When things do not work, the children are telling us that something in their lives is not working. It is not that they are broken and are this or that diagnostic code. Something is off. And what can be off? In our times it can be many things. For example, too little sleep or restless sleep, too much worry due to situations at home or bullying at school, images or sounds from TV or computers, testing at school, too much or too little attention from a parent or a teacher, etc.
And why don’t I want to diagnose them? Because they are not static. Even our cars are not static – if rust is eating a hole today, tomorrow that hole will be a bit bigger and in a week even bigger. Today a child is performing this way, tomorrow with your help or due to his own growth process, he will perform differently.
I want to meet him as an individual at the moment in time that he is in front of me and decide at that moment what will be most helpful for him today. I admit, my arsenal of “tricks”, although large by today’s standards, is not that large. Other practitioners may have other wonderful approaches, all with possible solutions. As John Lennon so wisely told us many years ago – there are no problems, only solutions.
So let’s get to business – let’s stop diagnosing, naming, and suggesting the length of the treatment. Let’s just be together. I will lead sometimes, the child will lead other times. As long as we are in the process, he or she will feel better and better about themselves.
As long as they start believing that they are not broken, that they have potential, that someone, even if it is just one person, has faith that they are very special with many gifts and that it is up to them to do something with these gifts, then they are going to manifest what they came here to manifest. The road is wide open to them and they will be able to overcome the challenges that they are facing.
Wisdom for Parents from Janusz Korczak
“The child cries very little, she sleeps through the night. She is good-natured, she is a good child. A bad one is one who makes a fuss and a lot of noise and one who, for no apparent reason, evokes more unpleasant than pleasant emotions in her parents.
One must be careful not to confuse a good child with an easy child.”