How can I serve you?

images-5

For many years you have been listening to me. Now I’d like to listen to you! So, this month, instead of my usual dharma essay, I’m reaching out to learn more about your needs, wants, dreams and challenges.

Hearth is ready to grow into an even greater resource and support system for you as you navigate the challenging seas of parenting. We know the work you do can be demanding and sometimes you may feel alone in your struggle.

In order to support you in the best way possible we need to know what kind of support you need. I am grateful to you for taking a few moments to share your thoughts with us. Here are some questions to get the ball rolling:

How can Hearth best serve you?

Providing online support
Getting together with other moms in real time
Spa/yoga/meditation weekends for moms
lists of people to support you
Personal contact with a mentor
things to read for inspiration
do your laundry
Other?

What subjects are most interesting to you?

ways to stay centered in the middle of turmoil
how to find moments to meditate
Sharing meditation with your children
creating more beauty in your life
Other?

I know how busy you are and want to thank you in advance for taking the time to let me know how we can serve you. With your input we will make Hearth an even more vibrant, nurturant community. You can either post your thoughts on:

https://awakeningathome.org/

or write me directly at:

jacquelinek@hearth-foundation.org

In gratitude for your love and desire to grow in our community,

Jacqueline

Advertisements

4 thoughts on “How can I serve you?

  1. I’ve been following Hearth since my pre-teen was a toddler. I’ve taken online classes and received inspiration from the dharma essays, and I appreciate the request for ideas on where to go from here.

    For me, many of the subjects you mention in the post interest me:

    ways to stay centered in the middle of turmoil
    how to find moments to meditate
    Sharing meditation with your children

    I would add, “ways to engage with mothers and others whose perspective and techniques differ from mine” I do well at this in the abstract, but in person, I tend to shut off and/or avoid interaction when someone’s doing things differently than I am or, even more, rigidly espousing a philosophy that’s very different from my own.

    How Hearth can best serve me…this one’s tougher. One of my biggest challenges is feeling connected to those outside of my home and feeling like my personal practice really isn’t just for myself. When my children were younger, I felt connection to other mothers through La Leche League, but I’ve been at a bit of a loss as my children have grown older and we grew away from our local LLL group (well, and we moved across the country). Online support hasn’t been as helpful to me as I would like, and in-person meetings always seem to involve lots of driving and childcare juggling and other energy barriers. Reading recommendations and/or journaling suggestions might be nice, and perhaps a guide for putting together a local discussion group (including how to set ground rules/covenant/communication guidelines to prevent quarrels/triangulation/unhealthy communication). I’m listening to Volume One of Joseph Goldstein’s Abiding in Mindfulness, and I’m finding it very inspiring, and yet I’m having difficulty applying it to my life as a householder. I might welcome a similar resource directed at those of us who find that long retreats (or even long stretches of quiet) aren’t part of our lives at the moment.

    Thank you again for requesting suggestions. I look forward to seeing how Hearth Foundation grows.

    1. Thank you so much for your honest, in depth response Charity. I really appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts. What you are saying is something I think about a lot. Online community just doesn’t seem to fill the need for support and its hard for moms to fit one more thing into their busy life and even harder when it entails leaving home. I really want to support you and feel there must be some way we can work out together. I can’t see anyway to have a really satisfying connection other than actually being in one another’s company, even for a short time. Some things come to mind. Would a skype or video group be more satisfying? How would it look to go on a one or two day retreat with other moms once a year, a retreat that would be about nurturing you as well as connecting with other like minded women and getting support for practice? This is just what comes to mind at first. I’m fully open to all ideas!

      1. A Skype/video group might work, actually. I attended a webinar recently, and the ability to share our experiences in a meaningful way was much better than it was even five years ago. I get the sense that the technology has come a long way in the area of virtual meetings.

        A one- or two-day retreat could be nice. I attended a weekend retreat at Insight Meditation Society in Barre, MA, a couple of years ago that’s had a lasting effect on me. The whole weekend was in noble silence, but it was surprising how much of a connection I felt with the woman I did dishes with even though we only spoke briefly at the beginning and end of the weekend. I wonder about the logistics of a retreat, with mothers spread across the country (and in other countries, too). It might be difficult to travel very far for a short retreat or to gather enough people from a smaller geographical area, but the idea of getting together for a combination of personal practice and intentional connection certainly sounds appealing (to me, at least). I could see maybe combining it with a family vacation if it were far from home and in a region that the rest of my family would like to visit (we like to visit a lot of places).

  2. I’m looking into video group sites, like zoom. That might be one good way to connect. I love the idea of combining the mother’s retreat with a family vacation. I was just at a retreat that had people from all over the world. One of the women, who came all the way from Germany, said her husband was staying with their 4 kids (all under 10) Sometimes it can be great for both the kids and the dad to have time together to find their own rhythm. When I was a single mom my daughter stayed with friends for the week I was on retreat. We moms can make it work if we really, really want it. Taking time for self care is a hard thing for moms to go for, but they come back to their families refreshed and with more to give. I like the idea of a combination retreat that involves meditation, discussion, talks, yoga, massage and maybe some dancing and getting wild!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s