“Breath in slower…1…2…3…breathe out…1…2…3…good…he will mirror you, if your anxiety heightens so will his…” the therapist told me.
We were trying to calm my youngest son down. He was having a meltdown in the middle of his therapy session, Currently, he was self soothing in the corner, with his face rubbing up against the scarf of the therapist hung on the back of the door.
“I can’t handle it, I can’t handle it” he kept repeating.
And then he just started to cry and cry and cry
No matter what I was saying, he wasn’t getting any of it, totally in his own world.
I had tried to get through to him, and as I did, my tone got to a higher pitch without me realizing it, it was the anxiety building in me. I wanted him to calm down. I was getting anxious with how to deal with it. To be honest, I didn’t want to be there anymore cause it was rough emotionally to handle these sessions. But I knew that it was good for him, that he was gonna benefit from it. So that’s why I went. At the end of the day I want him to be able to be the best him he can be.
And that’s when the therapist told me to breathe with her and also asked him to breathe with us as well. She suggested that if I did it too it would help him to also mirror my actions and calm down.
So then I thought about it. That’s it, the key to helping him, to being the best parent I can, is to actually be the best me.
I need to deal with my issues of anxiety and stress. And that’s not selfish to focus on myself. In fact, it’s the complete opposite.