By Kathryn Abbott, API Leader and editor of the Connections blog for API Leaders
When thinking about this year’s Attachment Parenting (AP) Month theme — “Cherishing Parents, Flourishing Children” — I wanted to be sure I really understood the meaning of “cherish” and “flourish.” I love the sound of those words, but what do they really mean?
“Cherish” is a verb that, according to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, means: to hold dear; to feel or show affection for; to keep or cultivate with care and affection; to entertain or harbor in the mind deeply and resolutely.
We when are cherished we feel secure. We are able to regulate our emotions and our behavior. Our value is recognized by others, and we are able to give of ourselves more fully — because we are supported.
“Flourish,” also a verb, is defined by Merriam-Webster as: to grow well; to be healthy; to be very successful; to do very well.
We can flourish when our attachment needs are met. When our attachment needs are met, we are able to be joyful and empathic. Our family is strong, and compassion is brought into the world.
These concepts of cherish and flourish are easy to write about, but for many parents knowing what to do and actually being able to do those things are a daily struggle.
All parents everywhere need support, need to be cherished, to realize their full potential as parents and help their children flourish. The difference that API Leaders make within their communities is immeasurable. The support they provide in cherishing parents each month may be the one thing that makes the difference.
Thank you, API Leaders, for making a difference within your own family and within the circle of your community. Each day, you are making an incredible difference, with passion, within your own family and within the families of your community. This is no small feat.
Your contribution to Attachment Parenting International (API) and to the AP community is so valuable, that we simply would not be here without you. Please know in your heart, API Leaders, that your commitment to the mission of API is what sustains all of us in our endeavors to support parents in raising children who flourish, and that, ultimately will change this world.
You are changing the world, one family at a time. Please keep doing it. You are so brave, so caring, so loved. Thank you.