The whole concept of living a life in a partnership paradigm takes a while for most people to grasp. We were raised to think that control, no matter how subtle, is the way to raise children. Living a Radical Unschooling life proves that there is another way!
I was in the grocery store the other day in the produce section with the kids. Ivy grabbed a bag and started filling it with brussel sprouts. She was proclaiming her love for this food that many adults have a strong aversion to. There was an older woman standing watching us in amazement. Ivy squealed with delight and was singing, "I love my brussels! Ya, ya ya!"
I could see that the woman wanted to say something to me, so I said, "Hello". She said, "Wow, you sure trained your kids well!" She was in awe that a child would eat brussel sprouts voluntarily and wondered how I made her like them. That somehow it was my creation having a child adore brussel sprouts. Some strange form of Jedi mind control or something. She said, "What's your secret?"
I told her quite matter-of-factly that I just loved them myself and my daughter wanted some of that Joy. I told her she was never made to eat them and wondered what all my enjoyment was about. The woman looked puzzled at my response, but smiled.
It is amazing to most people that through living a truly free life, our kids have so many more opportunities and options available to them. When someone is living a life being forced to live someone else's ideals, their future is warped because they loose true choice. Choices are made from a point of a power struggle, and becomes about you/vs them, not the actual thing someone is being forced to to, or eat, or live.
I believe that so many people hate brussel sprouts today because they were forced, coerced and bribed to eat them as children. Just the sight of a brussel sprout brings people back to that place of having no choice or control over their lives. By nature we so want to "win" that power struggle and are making a huge statement of our own power by not eating certain foods as adults.
Ivy loves brussel sprouts because she has always had the freedom to choose. I love them too and I never eat them in enjoyment with the ulterior motive to get my kids to also. This is something that many coming to this life need to understand. Living life in the present, authentically is so easy once we can get rid of all of our cultural armor. Most of us were raised with ulterior motives of subtle control, so this perspective isn't coming from a place of "a new, tricky way to get our kids to do what we want".
The best gift we can give our kids is just to live an authentic life. Communicating respectfully and kindly while shedding the cultural ideas that we must have ulterior motives to "train" our kids can be so freeing and joyful. We have to find *True* happiness and Clarity and then feel it in our body, mind and soul. Once we do, our kids can't help but want in on some of our *Bliss*. Ya, there are ups and downs in life, but no longer are we "in pursuit of happiness".. We are living it in the *Now*. How cool is this life?
~Ivy's Roasted Brussel Sprouts Recipe~
Heat oven to 350'. Melt 1/8 cup of butter in roasting pan. Remove pan and add as many brussel sprouts (rinsed and with ends trimmed) as you'd like and roll them around in the butter.
Add generous amounts of salt and dash of pepper.
Roast for about 20-30 minutes, or until tender and golden brown...