This morning I did not wake up my best self. I was sluggish and slow, riddled with impatience and frustration. Audrey too was having a particularly challenging morning, waking up super early and bouncing around on the ever changing emotions that come with being two. Needless to say, neither of us were really handling it all that well, and neither of us were getting what we needed.
There are two parts to what happened next. Number one, my beautifully insightful husband recognized this, I'm fairly certain, well before I did. He generously offered to take Audrey and go on an adventure into the city with her today so that I could have space. If you have ever taken a toddler, on a 45 minute subway ride, into the hustle and bustle of New York City, then you know that truly, generous, is the right word. I resisted him at first. I came up with all the reasons why it wasn't necessary, the first one being the infamous "I'm fine" proclamation. How did it come to be that just being fine , by the way, is the acceptable standard? I then hopped onto the mama guilt train and let myself ride into the place of counting all of the minutes I will not be with her moving forward this week, creating so much anxiety around the idea that if I miss out on the next four hours, I will be failing as her mama since I should be soaking up every last minute that I am able to be with her. This is a new one for me, as I just began working again and am no longer around for every single waking (and non waking) moment of my daughter's life. I love being back in the action of fulfilling my personal mission and work, but I am also still very much finding that balance of fulfilling my desire to be "mostly home" with my child while she is still so young.
The truth is, I knew that if I was given this time and space, I was going to have to do something with it. I was going to have to get my shit together and recalibrate. I knew that I would have no excuse not to meditate, or practice or write. I was resisting being with myself because I knew that I had some work to do. Now I know that this is not a serious struggle that I am talking about here. I know so many people would jump at the chance to have this time available in their day, even for just one day. Let me check my privilege in this moment and fully own up to that. However, whether you work forty-hours a week have eight children and very little time for yourself, I'm fairly certain that in some way, somehow you are still giving up even the tiniest of space in your life that could be just for you, to settle for "just being fine". For me, the biggest recognition here is that not only was I resisting taking some time and space for myself, but I was actively holding on to my poor mood and attitude because I simply didn't want to let it go. Not only that, but I was doing so at the expense of my family and the time we were already sharing together. Thankfully I have learned that Carl Jung was right when he said what we resist, persists and that is the second part, I took my space.
I didn't know if I needed a nap or a mediation so I did both in the form of yoga nidra. I opened up my journal afterwards and began to write, and now here I am adding this new post. In a few moments I am going to go treat myself to lunch, catch up on some work for my mentorship program, get on my yoga mat and then head into the city to teach my classes this evening. Washed away is the mama guilt and the bar being set at "fine" for how I move forward in this day. I didn't just give up the resistance, I gave myself over to it and found resolve. Thinking back to this morning and to my daughter, I realize that its not just two year olds who struggle with bouncing around on ever changing emotional currants. It just begins at that age. If I am ever going to be able to help her navigate those moments in her life, I first have to be able and willing to do it for myself. Although, thats the other thing about two year olds, they seem hell bent on getting exactly what they need, when they need it no matter what...
is a Mama, Wife, Yoga and Meditation Teacher, Coach, Writer and Activist. You can read more about her here.