Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Feeling healing

The deeper I get into my healing journey, the more I understand how important it is to truly feel our feelings.

Sometimes this is not fun.

Grief. Rejection. Abandonment. Inadequacy. Guilt. Sorrow. Fear.

Not every feeling is a pretty one.

Still, it’s important to respect ourselves by respecting the feelings we feel in our souls. We are not oversensitive if we feel something. We do not need to toughen up. We need to feel it, breathe, remind ourselves of kind truths, and move forward.

When we don’t, we turn to counterfeit comforts. We feel left out so we tell ourselves we’re fine with it while gripping tightly to whatever it is we turn to when we want to be numb… A pint of ice cream, a credit card in a favorite store, pornography, drugs, alcohol, hours of Facebook, petty theft, sex, taking risks we know could end with our demise.

I am in a really great place and these days I am so thankful for my journey. For all of it! If I had never experienced bulimia, self-harm, all the counterfeit comforts I once turned to, I would never be able to really talk about it with those who have. If I had never experienced all the things I’ve experienced, I wouldn’t be armed with the knowledge that can help keep my children a little safer from these evils.

I was really excited when I was given the opportunity to review What am I Feeling? This seemed like a great way to normalize this concept for my children while they’re still young and impressionable rather than letting them try to unlearn societal norms the way most of us have had to do as adults.

The story is simple and relatable to even the youngest children, and I love that it encourages little ones to not only recognize what they are feeling but to also handle it in the healthiest way- by praying about it. The illustrations are also cute and my children all loved the fold-out feelings poster in the back. This is what each of my children had to say about it: 

Six-year-old: “I loved it! I liked what the dad said to him… like it’s okay what you’re feeling.”
Four-year-old: “I love about it that it has feelings because then WE can learn about more feelings!”
Two-year-old: “Yeah! If there’s feelings then I like that because then we can learn about feelings.”
17-month-old: “Eh! Eh, eh!”

I’m still learning myself how to respect myself by respecting whatever it is that I’m feeling, but I’m hoping that my kids will have a much healthier head start in this area thanks to books like this normalizing what was for some reason a foreign concept to all of us for so many years!

*I received a free copy of What am I Feeling? From the publisher in exchange for my completely honest review.

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