Mandala| The Circle of Parenting a Teen Boy

My teen son had an assignment to create a Mandala (circle in Sanskrit) and explain what it represented. The psychoanalyst, Carl Jung, saw the mandala as “a representation of the unconscious self”.

I was so impressed with his completed project, that I wanted to share. He is seventeen and any mom of a teenager will understand how special it is! Below is the picture he drew and the words that follow are his.

mandela, teenager, son, art, mom, parenting

At first glance this circle may seem hectic. Perhaps even a bit chaotic and certainly rough around the edges but there is a method to the madness. The circle is imperfectly shaped and rough around the edges because so I am. In my mind that doesn’t make my circle or me any worse than others.

As the circle progresses toward the middle there is a slow but noticeable darkening in shade. This shows my insecurities, my fears, my depression. All of the things that get worse as I look deeper within myself. In the center, if only a little bit, there is Peace. At my core I have hope and tolerance, and that’s what keeps me going.

Incorporated into the design are musical notes and a rest. I don’t know who I am without music so these notes are as much a part of me as my hand or my heart. Music is at the heart of who I am.

My self care plan consists of treating my body better. I need to watch what I eat more and try ti get more sleep. If I want to function better in my everyday life, then I need to keep my body in better working condition. I also feel like I need to appreciate the little things more. I could stand to be happier a bit more often.

My Mandela is a glimpse inside who I am. It may seem simplistic and it may seem odd but that’s just who I am.


Sure, as a parent I would rather my son never feel depressed or experience insecurities but I understand that he is a person and not just my child. These are things that all of us deal with and I am encouraged that he is in touch with how he feels and able to express it.

To read his self care plan and know that all the things I harp on are things he would like to improve…there is light at the end of this parenting tunnel! 😉


** GIVEAWAY ANNOUNCEMENT!! – the winner of our giveaway for commenting on my blog goes to…drum roll please…Regina Brown  of RMB Photography**

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