Updated: Sep 14, 2021
Six months ago, Sydney corporate recruiter Sasha Dumaresq bravely went public with a very private story: how behind closed doors she was struggling with the daily challenges of being a hands-on mum to three girls while smashing her career.
She agreed to be coached by me in what was a #Perspectives first, a live coaching session that saw Sasha—who started studying at The Coaching Institute in 2016 and is now a mindset and career transformation coach with her own business—admit she had "no connection really to my emotions" when her three kids were younger.
Sasha's honesty and huge drive to change and understand her relationship with her firstborn, who is now nine, saw us reframe how Sasha was reacting to her daughter's clap backs against what she admits was "very controlling" parenting.
It resonated with Mother Load audiences to the tune of about 30K views. It also left me keen to find out what happened next with Sasha and her family, and if our strategies had helped banish her mother lode of guilt.
So in September, Sasha returned for another live coaching session in Mother Load II. Again, the episode worked two ways, with audiences hearing one woman's experience of what is a far too common affliction, while also seeing how a professional coaching session works.
Now—after nearly 70,000 people have followed her journey so far—the amazing, inspirational Sasha has stepped up again in Mother Load III for another coaching session.
And this time, it's all about her!
Rather than exploring strategies and frameworks around parenting, this session is a deep dive into the being-ness of our humanity. The first two sessions were quite detailed around external things, and this one really went to what I believe is the heart of coaching, which is the inner journey where we coach to self.
If you're a coach, you'll see a lot of reframes in this coaching session. But what I think the heart of this session is really about, and the thing that lit me up, was what Sasha claimed back for herself or what was the gift that she was waiting to give herself.
As coaches, when we're in a session, the key is knowing how to be fully present beyond any judgment for the client. And I hope you see that in Mother Load III, giving generously of your presence to them means they can fill the space with their truth.
As always, Sasha is so easy to coach because she claims the truth in seconds. It was beautiful to be a part of and I think you'll get a lot of joy out of this. It's for anybody who would get value out of knowing how to reclaim humanity and stepping into being all of who we are as a human being.
The big question is, what does that mean day-to-day for Sasha?
As she told me, what she wanted from our third session was "to go a bit deeper and recover deletions, distortions and generalisations (DDGs)" because she's been looking back at her daughter’s early childhood and the memories are “tarnished with me just being a terrible parent.”
Sasha has asked friends and family for evidence of how she was and keeps coming back to “I was a shouty mum. I was, you know, I didn't nurture her enough. And all of these self judgements are still coming in.”
One thing I was able to share with Sasha is something I think should be at the top of a parenting cheat sheet: research that shows your parenting amounts to maybe around 10 per cent of your children.
It's genetics. Her daughter—just like your own children, if you have them—was always going to be who she is, and she's going to be different to her siblings.
And nothing Sasha says, does or worries about will change that.
What a gift. It's mind blowing.
“Wow," said a "relieved" Sasha, who has always believed her the figure was closer to 100 per cent.
"So what's the other 90 per cent?" she asked, musing out loud. "Because it's the nature nurture discussion. So it's more nature. Well, what have I been so worried about then? Seriously, 10 per cent. Oh my goodness.”
What struck me is how when I look at Sasha's parenting all I see is love. She loves her kids so much and wants the best for them. She wants to be her best for them. I only hear love in what she's been telling herself. I hear love and compassion and care.
That's how I'd be framing what she's said to herself over these years.
I don't know that there's more that could be asked of Sasha. I don't know if there's anything more beautiful about parenting than what she's demonstrating.
"If 90 per cent of my daughter girl is her, my job in this is to purely and simply support her to be her. Well, if I known this nine and a half years ago, would have made my job a lot easier!" said Sasha.
We spoke about a stack more stuff—the compassion question, how patterns play out—and I pushed Sasha a bit with a few things. Bottom line: she might have done a sucky job at times at mothering. She is doing a great job now.
I won't give more away, but I'd love for you to wrap up the second season of #Perspectives with this remarkable woman, coach and mother's story.
Thank you again Sasha, and thank you everyone who has listened in and made this a record-breaking series. We've had nearly 700,000 views in our 18 episodes and I've loved talking to guests including Bernard Salt, Emma Murray, Natasha Tynes, John Assaraf and Kate Christie.
See you next year. May 2021 bring fresh perspectives, great challenges and much joy.