Ever wish you could freeze time, when you’re amid the screaming of children and general chaos that is life, to take a moment for the sake of regaining your sanity? Yeah, me too. Trust me, I’ve tried that remote trick that Adam Sandler did on “Click” and, much to my chagrin, it didn’t work. Hey…it was worth a try! I am well aware that the chaos and ear splitting shrieking that sometimes plague a parent’s day, are the norm. I understand that the high pitched decibels of toddlers mean that our children are healthy and that the chaos is the result of not doubling up on my birth control methods. That doesn’t make it any easier to navigate through the moments that make me want to call CPS and turn myself in for a made up infraction, just to get a day of peace.
I would like to be able to tell you that I am one of those perpetually peaceful people who seem to radiate a slightly smug contentedness from deep within their soul. I would like to be able to tell you that I write in a gratitude diary every day, right after my 6am Yogalates session and bowl of organic muesli. I would like to be able to tell you that I am able to handle anything my children throw at me – figuratively speaking – because I am inherently calm and happy and balanced. I would like to be able to tell you I’m like that because I would like to be like that but the thing is, I’m not. Maybe in a parallel universe, but not this one. I’m just not good at relaxing. During the birth of my second daughter, I tried very hard to breathe deeply through the contractions, to focus my energies inward and breathe the pain out. My husband later told me that I sounded like a horse.
In this universe, I’m just your average, garden-variety ineffective parent whose favourite method for calming down involves a large glass of shiraz and an even larger block of chocolate, and whose body would simply snap in half if made to do the downward dog.
When my mother was a stay-at-home-mother of four she went to yoga classes once a week – we used to say she was going to Yoghurt Classes – and she once told me that yoga saved her sanity in those days. So one day I went to a yoga class for new mothers and stretched for about 50 minutes before being told to lie down and listen to the lovely music and breathe deeply and just as I felt the tension melt away and the thoughts leave my troubled mind and just as I reached that state of blissful contentment… I fell asleep. I might have snored. Well, at least I didn’t neigh.
I really love the idea of meditation, but although I have tried I just can’t do it without the snoring. So, like all good mothers, I am living the life of a calm and contented human being vicariously through my children. My kids are learning to meditate. In our house, every day ends with reading from a book called The Wishing Star: Meditations for Children by Marneta Viegas. There’s a good reason why this is a good thing. continue reading…
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