Nurturing our Little Girl
A number of years ago, I dreamt I was on a solitary walk in a park filled with beautiful trees and long walking trails.
A mother and her small daughter were out walking, too. Upon seeing me, the daughter left her mother and ran up to me asking if I would play with her. I said no, and when she persisted, I said no very firmly and wondered why the mother would not call the daughter away from me. Finally, the daughter pleaded with me tearfully and pulled at my arm. “Please,” she cajoled me, “Please play with me.” In my dream, I looked down at her without compassion and said, “I will not let you dominate my life anymore,” whereupon the young girl returned sadly to her mother’s side.
I have often thought about that dream. It has spoken to me throughout the years about the inner craving we, as women, have to be nurtured ourselves. As grown and mature women, we often concentrate more on caring for others and yet somehow we must find a way not to overlook that worthy little girl who resides inside us even today.
Our little girl has something to teach us – if only that we need to remember who we really are – who we were before the world came in and told us whom we are. And we need to remember that the child inside us has gifts yet to be opened that are both of value in the world and needed by the world today.
We can only revere her when we take the time to mother her, to nurture her and to hear her voice.
We all need a mother who is kind, considerate and who loves us unconditionally. Someone with whom we feel safe, sheltered, warm and cozy. Someone who will play with us, have fun with us and be there for us when we need them. Sometimes we have to take the time to be our own mother.
In our very adult worlds with so many responsibilities, deadlines and commitments, the easiest thing to do is to ignore our little girl selves and keep our eye on the “more important things” of our tightly wound lives.
But sometimes the little girl, as in the dream, will not go away. She is there persistently tempting us to love ourselves enough to indulge ourselves. Take me to the zoo, she begs. You know how I love to look at the orangutans, especially how the mommy plays peek-a-boo under a blanket with her baby. “Are you kidding?” I respond. “I have important work, a household to run, groceries to buy, meals to prepare.
Okay, but maybe we just play in your makeup a little bit? Maybe try on some different shades of lipstick or you could put some eye shadow on me…please, she begs and again I turn her down to do the things I “must” accomplish that day.
And the strange yet, always predictable, thing is, at the end of the day, I can barely remember why it was that I did not have time to take try on a different eye shadow. And by the end of the week, I have no idea why I am so exhausted.
I believe at times, we must focus on saving the little girl who something to say, even beyond just wanting to play.
She wants me to feel loved – valued – cherished in a way that only I can provide to myself.
Today, my little girl wants to go for a walk, color in her meditative coloring books and read a novel. And it is Sunday. And, yes, I could do any number of household responsibilities and I may or may not get around to it. This little girl has been busy too long, has worried too much, has not slowed down in a while and is a little burnt out. So now I will indulge her, love her, adore her. In the end, she has the power to help me feel well and stable. She has the insight to open doors to new ways of living life.
God bless my little girl, today and always. And yours, too. She is a pretty smart little cookie.