“Raising children means raising human beings.”

These words were uttered last night to a packed room by Krista Tippett, as she launched into a conversation with Sylvia Boorstein about spirituality and parenting.

And as this blog is titled Nourish Cafe, I found it ironic and meaningful that they kept discussing how we nourish ourselves, as the purpose behind spirituality and tradition.

Everyone’s religion is kindness, they said. How clear you are thinking is determined by your ability to be kind. By what we respond to, and what we nurture, that’s what grows in our children.

Last night was a lonely, lonely night for me. My fiance was out of town and my children were at their father’s house for the first time in two weeks. And I missed them terribly.

This is the routine of divorce, but over the last two weeks, we have formed such a tight little pack of synergy and flow. In the middle of the night, I wakened, needing to check on the children to make sure they were asleep in peace. I bolted toward the upstairs hallway and peered into my eldest son’s room. I looked and I looked and it took me a full few minutes to realize he wasn’t there and why.

Our children give us new eyes. It’s like everything has been invented for them.

As the room mother in Asher’s class, I planned the Valentine’s party this past Monday. I wanted to do an art project instead of loading the kids up on sugary treats. My little Ashi suggested that he and his classmates make heart paintings to donate to a seniors center “to brighten up their rooms.”

Kindness. It’s the stuff of moments. But it’s transformative. Mindfulness is about looking for those moments. Paying attention. Being completely there.

In my 20s, an aunt told me to choose my life partner carefully for once you have a child, you want to do for that child everything that was done for you. Last night, I realized what that was. The gift of my childhood was the feeling, the belief, and the practice that who we were was enough. What we believed, what we observed, our traditions were valid and real.

Honor their questions, the speakers said last night. And don’t feel pressure to have answers.

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