The Mindful Parent

Experience the Joy of Connecting with our Children



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The Morning Cup


Mindful Parenting is a contemplative practice through which our connection to our child, and awareness of our child’s presence, helps us become better grounded in the present moment

Your mindful parenting practice

tip of the day.

Sip slowly.

The Mindful Parent is an organization devoted to sharing with parents and other child caregivers ways in which to enhance the many joys of parenting.  By mindfully attending to our children, both when we are physically present with them and when we are physically separated from them, we can enhance our sense of connection to them and, in turn, our connection to the cosmos.  This makes us a better parent, a happier person, and a more vital human being.


To facilitate a more mindful approach to parenting, The Mindful Parent publishes on its website, and in its newsletter, mindful  parenting  verses and commentaries.  The Mindful Parent website also serves as a community forum that encourages and supports a mindful parenting dialogue and the sharing of mindful parenting experiences.


In the spirit of developing a mindful parenting community, we encourage you to submit a mindful parenting verse, commentary, and imagery to share with others.  We believe that through our collective experience, we can help each other develop a deeper and more meaningful mindful parenting practice.  Click here to learn more about making a submission.  We thank everyone who has made a contribution.

Please contact us with your questions about mindful parenting or to share a mindful parenting experience.  The Mindful Parent conducts mindful parenting  workshops and seminars


The Daily Sip: The First Day -- Again

We humans have the amazing ability to keep track of time and to remember.  We string together the events of our life, much as we would a pearl necklace.  Mindfulness is seeing clearly these events so that we might glimpse more deeply our true nature.  Mindful parenting asks us to see clearly the events of our child’s life as we string them together.  But unlike a pearl necklace, we tend to string together not just the events, but our interpretations of them.  Our judgments.  Our needs.  Our hopes and fears.

From the moment of our child’s birth, we begin stringing together the necklace that represents their life and our relationship with them.  The wonderful acts and the troubling conduct, the totality of our experience of who they are – slip into place along side one another.  And, in the moments of reflection and interaction, we turn to this strand, this record of history, to make sense of things, and we react out of this understanding.

Today is the first day of the rest of your life.  It is the first day of the rest of your child’s life.  And, far removed from the moment of your child’s birth, this day is filled with preconceptions.  We “know” our child.  We look along the strand of their life with a sometimes approving nod and sometimes disapproving glance.  And from time to time we think we know who they will become.  While we can’t select the next pearl, the next event, we can interpret it in a way that is consistent with our expectations.  As we lovingly place it on the strand, we forget that our understanding may express bias and preconceptions more than deep knowing.

And as this happens, the mystery of life’s unfolding loses its magic.  Our compassion and empathy is curtailed, because our experience of the moment is predetermined.  And because we care so deeply for our child, and because the nature of their increasingly independent existence can be a source of concern, fear and sadness, we may focus more on the pearls of the past, than the pearls yet to come.  We think we know what’s best.   And as we construct this more “certain” and “seemingly safe” interpretation of the world, we see our child with blurry vision and lose sight of who they are.

Remember those charming pink and blue bracelets stringing together a newborn’s name parents were given shortly after their child was born?  These colorful beads were simply colorful beads.  At most, they meant “boy” or “girl.”  They meant “alive” and “born.”  We looked at our child with an open-hearted kindness and embraced the mystery of life – wowed by its awesome power.

Today, the first day of the rest of our child’s life, is somehow different.  Where is the glory of the mystery?  Where is the endless kindness?  Where is the laughter and awe over the nuance of each expression?  Has it disappeared?  Has reality set in?  Or, perhaps, has the way we relate to our child – and to our life -- changed?  Has our state of mind shifted from curious and delighted, to expectant and overwhelmed?  Do we see the pearls, the shimmer, and the dance of light?  Or have the pearls simply become small round objects, maybe even an obligation?

Today, when you are with your child, bring your thoughts to the newborn’s red or blue bracelet.   Visualize a bracelet or watch you are wearing as if it were this bracelet.  Or better yet, find the real one if you still have it.  Re-experience this moment as it will enliven it in your mind.   You cannot possibly know what will happen next?  Allow your child to see in your eyes and soul the same kindness and interest that emanated when they were infants and toddlers. And as you do, you will find again within yourself the wonder of surprise.  You will find again the joy of every nuance, of every moment.   Offer your child the gift of seeing themselves for who they are, not who you think they are or expect them to become.

Today’s verse is:

My beautiful child

You sparkle like a pearl

Mysterious as the deep sea

Click here to read the last Morning Cup Column,

“The Three Mindful R’s”

The Morning   Cup


If you would like a copy of The Morning Cup column e-mailed to you, click here.


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