Droopy Leaves and a Child’s Needs

There is this plant on our back porch whose leaves start to droop when it is in need of water. Whenever I see it start to sag (as in the pic) I am happy that it tells me exactly what it needs with such a clear signal. Even more, I love how I am able to easily fulfill its needs with my watering can. It feels good to see how, in just a few hours, it starts to perk up once again. I feel capable and effective. How wonderful when SIGNAL and RESPONSE align so smoothly and effortlessly.
And I consider how challenging and helpless it can feel to be a parent and see signals – from someone you love so deeply – that you don’t understand, don’t know how to respond to and worse, that your typical response RAISES the volume of the confusing and alarming signal…..
We are all in this difficult spot together and the good news is that aligned signal and response is wired into the relationship. Humans are a bit more complex than a houseplant, but you have a pitcher, God gave it to you when you became a parent, and your child needs water. The need may not be expressed as clearly as saggy leaves, in fact, it may be downright distressing and off putting. But trust that it is there and you don’t have a solution you ARE the solution.
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