When are we ever truly free? I like to think of my freedom as my possibility to choose. I am very fortunate to live in a country where I have choices. To be in a position where I am able to make things happen on my own. But, at the same time I am constantly expected to make certain choices. Specific ones, that have been chosen by thousands of people before me and are being chosen as I write. Choices people don’t think about. These are choices that involve school, education, work etc.
From the moment we are born we are constantly reminded that we are not truly free. Most of us grow up with parents who tell us when to eat, what to eat, how much etc. and when to sleep, how long to sleep and so on. It becomes a pattern that fits the society we are supposed to fit into and to become a part of, like wheels in a clock. We are not usually questioning this pattern, because how could we live any differently? Everybody seems to fit their lives into this machinery one way or the other. And most people are happy to do it. There is not necessarily any reason to do otherwise. And there are certain benefits to being a part of the machinery.
But there should be freedom to choose outside of the box. And that is where it becomes difficult. That is where you have to think creatively and to get together with like-minded people to try to create a place where opportunity is available. Where it is possible to feel free and to really feel like you have a say in the way your children grow up. I want to know that my daughter has the opportunity to choose her own learning, her own interests. To know that she is the director of her own skills and wisdom. With me as the facilitator of course. And that is what I am working with at the moment. We are still finding out the best ways we communicate and working with how we approach things. I am not following a distinct recipe or anything we are simply living our lives together, finding ways to communicate with each other in the best way that is respectful and non-judgemental.
To her it comes natural but for me there are patterns of behaviour that I somehow need to unlearn. These are things that have been planted in me by my surroundings and my experiences and that are perfectly normal by our society’s standards but nontheless not very fruitful when it comes to developing an equal relationship. It helps a lot to think about every action as a choice to make. Do I want to coerce my daughter into putting on her clothes right now? for what reason? what is to be gained from that? do I want to put down what I am doing right now and help her with her request? why would I not want to help her right now? why does she need to wait? could I wait and do what I was doing later? and so on. That helps a lot. And it is okay that things take time.
The important thing is to remember our choices.