It has been said that God doesn’t give us more than we can handle. Intellectually, I understand this, but there is also a part of me that strongly resists the notion. In the midst of a crisis, I once repeatedly cried out to God, “This is too much for me!” Evidently, the higher source thought otherwise. And although I still wouldn’t have chosen the experience, I did get through it. There is no doubt that hurt and pain can teach us important lessons. But sometimes I’d like to tell God that even though I know that these experiences make me a wiser and more compassionate person, I’m on vacation now. And I’m choosing not to accept any more painful lessons—thank you very much.
Obviously, I do not have all the answers. But during the tough times, the following beliefs and actions have helped sustain me. And I hope that by sharing them, they will bring some comfort and solace to you during the difficult times of your life.
AND REMEMBER, IF LOVE IS THE SOURCE OF OUR PAIN, ITíS ALSO THE SOURCE OF OUR HEALING.
It is very painful for us to see or think about innocent children who are suffering. While we’d like children’s lives to be happy, healthy, and carefree, it is not always the case. World-wide, many children are not immune to life’s pain.
Like adults, if the pain of children’s disappointments and losses linger unresolved, it can lead to poor mental and physical health and destroy their future relationships. We can help children to heal by encouraging them to get in touch with feelings and to allow them the freedom to express them.
Children are very pragmatic. And sometimes their worries are very real. I recently received a heart wrenching e-mail from an amazing mother who was doing her very best to help her child through a time that was very difficult for them both. The woman’s husband, (the father of her child), died just a year ago. And now, the young mother was battling cancer. Naturally, her son was afraid that he was also going to lose his mom, just as he had his dad.
I was glad that the little boy was expressing his fear, rather than pretending it didn’t exist. I encouraged this courageous mother to tell her son about all the women who had conquered cancer and gone on to live healthy lives. But in addition, I think it’s important for her young son to know just what would happen to him if his fears were realized. Where would he live? Who would take care of him? Like all of us, by having children face their fears head on, they are better able to deal with them.
My blessings and prayers go out to this family and I ask for yours as well.
July Dream Starter: The Rainbow Raft
Dream Starters are visualizations which promote relaxation, imagination and well-being as they guide children into the world of dreams.
You can find more story visualizations about Dream Land, where children manifest whatever they desire, in The Floppy Sleep Game Book. Or visit Patti’s new site, Timeoutfordreamers.com for recordings that you can download.
To prepare for these dream starters, (or visualizations), create a quiet comfortable atmosphere in which your child can relax.
The Rainbow Raft
Tonight when you arrive in Dream Land, there is a sign on the door of the Dream Academy. It says, “Tonight’s dream lesson will take place at Crystal Lake.” Just as you finish reading the note, a beautiful deer approaches you and says softly, “Follow me, I’ll take you there.”
You follow the beautiful and gentle doe down a moonlit forest path. When the path ends, you find yourself at the edge of a beautiful, large lake. You are stunned by its beauty. The water shimmers and dances in the light of the silvery moon. You spot the Dream Maker along with a group of pajama clad children. They are happy to see you and wave, beckoning you to join them. The Dream Maker has asked the children to gather sticks and logs to make a raft. Dream Land’s friendly forest animals are also helping. There are foxes, badgers, ducks, geese, turtles, and a large owl gathering sticks with the children. You can help too and begin gathering as many sticks as you can find. The pile of sticks quickly grows. Before long, the Dream Maker says that you have enough.
The Dream Maker takes a pinch of magical dream dust out of her pouch and sprinkles it on the large mound of sticks. Instantly, the sticks turn into a strong, sturdy raft. The Dream Maker asks you and the other children what color you’d like the raft to be. She laughs when each of you chooses a different color. “We will call it, the Rainbow Raft,” exclaims the Dream Maker. She sprinkles dream dust on the raft and it instantly glimmers with all the colors of the rainbow.
The Dream Maker invites you and the other children to join her on the raft and there is more than enough room for everyone. When you’re all onboard, the Dream Maker tosses a rope that’s attached to the raft. The large owl catches it in his strong beak and pulls the raft into the water. The other friendly forest animals are still on the shore, nodding their heads approvingly. You and the other children begin singing a song as you float through the sparkling water. The fish enjoy the song and show their appreciation by putting on a spectacular diving show. Enjoy watching the rainbow colored trout as they jump up into the air and then dive back down into the crystal clear water. When your song ends, they all jump up together, wave their fins to say thanks and good-bye, and then happily swim away.
The water continually laps along the sides of the raft. The Dream Maker passes out soft, comfortable pillows. Lie down and enjoy the soft summer night’s breeze as it softly caresses your face. You are very, very comfortable. If you’d like a light weight soft blanket, the Dream Maker will give one to you. Some of the children are beginning to fall asleep; they are lulled by the sound of the water as it gently laps against the sides of the raft. You can’t keep your eyes open any longer; you are so very comfortable and sleepy. Your arms and legs feel so heavy that you don’t want to move them. Your eyelids feel heavier and heavier. Finally, you close your eyes and fall asleep. As soon as you do, the Dream Maker takes off her star studded magical cape and turns it into a large billowing sail which she ties to a pole in the middle of the rainbow raft. The breeze--along with a little magic, make it grow larger and larger until it billows across the sky. It lifts the raft right out of the water and you begin floating into the starlit sky, just above the crystal clear water. The star studded cape lights up the beautiful night sky and the Dream Maker smiles happily. She looks back at the forest animals that are watching from the shore, nods her head at them and tosses dream dust their way. They begin to fly too, following your raft as it floats through the sky. The deer that led you down the path leads the way. Your raft flies past the lake and over the forest and beautiful mountains of Dream Land. The deer, owl, ducks, geese and turtles fly just behind you.
Finally, it’s time to go back. The raft flies back over the mountains and forest until it is floating over Crystal Lake. The Dream Maker sprinkles a little dream dust toward the sail. Her magical cape gets smaller and smaller and the raft floats lower and lower. Finally, it oh so gently lands back in the water. She unhooks her star studded magical cape from the pole at the center of the raft and puts it back on. The forest animals fly down to the shore and wait for you. The Dream Maker throws them a rope and together, they pull you ashore. When you step off the raft, the little deer who took you down the path gives you a friendly little nuzzle, and offers to fly you back home to your own cozy bed. The Dream Maker reminds you that you’re also free to stay and explore Dream Land for as long as you’d like. She sprinkles dream dust into the night sky and disappears. But you still can hear her voice saying, “Enjoy your dreams! Good-night!”