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Green Bean

Updated: Aug 31, 2023

Name: Green Bean

Address: Intersection of Anger & Sadness

Superpower: Unveiling the Unseen

Kryptonite: Feeling Invisible

I don’t think I ever told you that for my whole life I have contended with a white-hot rage that seemingly could bloom at any moment. For most of that time, any attempts to control it came at a very high cost.

This anger is loud and torturous and disruptive. As a kid, and probably still, it was labeled as “temper tantrums,” mocked and banished to the farthest reaches of the house. In a desperate attempt to be understood, I once drew what this anger felt like in my body and even wrote an essay. Looking back on it now, I am shocked by how clearly I articulated an experience I still have today.

Unfortunately, in the parenting landscape of the mid-nineties, that message was received with revulsion. Folded up and tucked away for safe keeping next to the How to Parent the Problem Child instructional manual.

Now, almost 30 years later, I find myself wringing my hands as I watch you dance with the same dragon. My god is it painful.

Embarrassment that I can’t “control you”, like “I should.”

Fury that this is extremely inconvenient and disruptive.

Rejection as you rebuff my attempts to comfort.

Frustration as you rage at well researched emotional regulation techniques.

Despair that you don’t believe I am on your side or understand.

Fear that I can’t figure out how to save you from this struggle.

Shame that I too struggle to hold a loving space for your storms.

Through failed experiment after failed experiment of every tip the “How to Parent” world has to offer; I am brought back to a single image weeks after you were born. We were exhausted and petrified new parents and you were inconsolable. After every trick and tonic, I finally just sat in the rocker with you, holding your red, tense screaming body and began to rock. I closed my eyes, patted your diapered butt, breathing long and slow. Your screams washed over my panic as I began to breath into and relax every muscle in my body. And eventually, you fell asleep in my arms. It was not quick, it was not painless, but it did end. We were harried, but together. Connected.

Parenting has been a bruitfully humbling experience for me. It has been a house of mirrors, revealing every demon I have run from, and every wound left gaping open. For a long time, the pain of it seemed to weigh down the joy until I realized this was a gift, not a theft.

The words and spirt of Carl Jung, allowed me to see the invitation Motherhood extended.

“The greatest burden a child must bear is the unlived life of its parents.”

The invitation, and the right, to live my life to the fullest extent possible. I can connect with you by connecting with myself. The more healed and fulfilled I am, the more I have to offer to you. My job is not to control you or mold you. My job is to heal myself while maintain a loving and safe container for you to explore and express. My job is to ensure that your Green Bean feels welcomed, seen and heard. Not exiled, not ostracized. To give her the loving space to mature with us.

What I know is that you and I are the latest of a long lineage of feminine trauma and suffering. We carry it in our souls and in our DNA. None of these things are our fault but is currently my responsibility and will eventually be yours. I cannot and should not save you from this struggle, but I can ensure that you won’t be alone with it.

What I know is that in some ways, you and I are, in fact, partially invisible to the outside world. The world would much prefer to bury the truths we can see and cannot bare but to describe in their intense full glory. We cannot tolerate denying them they cannot tolerate acknowledging them.

What I know is that anger is my Green Bean, the part of me that sounds the alarm when my outsides do not match my insides. When I chose to turn my back on the truths that can’t be unseen. As a kid, survival depended on manhandling that part of me into submission, conforming to the world around me. But now as an adult, that strategy has only led to illness and suffering. It has become time to integrate my Green Bean into my internal advisory team.

What I know is that when we fully accept what is, grow through this discomfort, find the path to radically love all parts of ourselves and this superpower, the full glory of these truths will lovingly emit from us. We will not need to cajole or prove our realness and validity; it will just be felt. And it will feel like a warm loving hug that will infinitely ripple through time and space. This space will not be a final destination but a journey we will constantly be devoted to returning to.

I promise you, I will carry this ball as far as I can. I will heal, repair, fall down, stand up, heal and repair again. When you inevitably discover some serious errors in the paradigm I’ve handed you, I promise to relearn, heal, and repair with you. I promise you that I am here in this unseen world with you, even when the storm rages and blinds. I promise you that we will make something beautiful in the crucible. I promise you that we have the capacity to contain and expand beyond anything this world tells us is possible.

For now, I am pulling my Green Bean out from hiding and invite you and yours to join us. Your Green Bean and My Green Bean will stand in a place of honor, hand in hand in front of our world for all to see. She will not be forced into hiding within these familial walls. We will listen to her, acknowledge her. We will tell her over and over:

We Believe You

Your Words Are Important

You Are Safe Here

You Are Real

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Aug 04, 2023

Beautiful 💕 You are seen 🥰

Laura Kane-Punyon
Laura Kane-Punyon
Aug 04, 2023
Replying to

xoxo Thank you 🙏

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