The Secret to a Successful Life

the lesson in today’s Homily

The pinky promise . . . a playful, childlike way to enter into a loving space of listening and honoring. (Upsplash)
An excerpt from the daily wisdom dropdown on renee.love, a place where I invite wisdom to flow into the events of my life.

1/10/18

Mass at the High School today.

Always amazing to be around 1200 kids worshiping — even though some of them aren’t . . . they are there and that is half of the equation to a spiritual journey. Showing up.

Father Snow had a very simple homily.

To be good at anything, you must first learn to listen.

Parents.

Teachers.

Doctors.

Lawyers.

Kids.

Everyone.

It reminded me of Stephen Covey’s habit: seek first to understand and then to be understood.

That is my goal. To step out of judgement and into pondering what is really going on, dig deep, seeing with a quiet heart not a busy mind. No timelines just cyclical mindfulness. Autorepeat.

Mom, please uncurl my hair!

My kids are my best teachers. If you are a parent and you don’t feel this way, I urge you to look at your kids with a fresh pair of eyes.

Picture day . . . messages flying on SC, Instagram, Messenger and Facetime — no doubt there was a house party as well. Girls all talking about what they will and won’t do to fit in. It is always a cringey moment for me. I was NOT the girl in middle school or high school that fit in. I did not even try. Not pretty or popular enough to be on the homecoming court let alone queen, not a burn out, basketball and track were my sports— but not really a jock, no band, no theater, no clubs. I never checked in with anyone on what I should wear or how I should do my hair.

As my daughter asks me to curl her hair . . . then an hour later for me to uncurl her hair . . . I smile. I pause. I love her deeply.

I could be pissed because I curled her hair at the most in-opportune moment. You see, I have a flow of how I do things. In any given hour I might do 20–30 things. They are planned out in my mind in a specific sequence. If that flow is truncated . . . dinner burns, someone doesn’t get a lunch, I forget to go to the bathroom, the dog isn’t walked. Anything could potentially NOT happen. And to top it off, I won’t know until I shower the next morning when I’m going over the plan of the new day. In this new planning my “undones” pop up — much like the toast left in the toaster than never made it to the breakfast table.

I stop my flow to curl her hair that she now wants uncurled.

Exhale.

News Flash: 14 year old girls change their minds . . . a lot.

News Flash: 50ish women change their minds a lot . . . but forget we ever changed our minds.

When puberty and menopause collide, the only way to repair the bond is with love.

I listened. Not to her words but to her spirit.

Her spirit doesn’t know if she wants wavy hair or straight hair. Her spirit and her ego are working out the details. This scenario will work itself out thousands of times. I pray her spirit wins out. I pray my ego loses.

I listened to my emotions before I was verbal. I listened to the 14 year old girl inside of me that slept in pink rollers. I honored her and my daughter simultaneously.

“Go take a shower.”

That will uncurl her hair and give us both time to figure out what the hell we are doing.

In that moment, I listened and it all worked out well.

Viso gero. It’s all good.

Until we meet again.

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