Saturday, August 25, 2012

A Mother's Perspective

You never know where you are going to be when you hear a message that changes your perspective.  Chad and I went to a beautiful and very special wedding last night where I heard something that did just that.

Let me start by saying we did not bring Dutch.  Kids were allowed, in fact they were encouraged, which was so awesome.  We were planning to bring him until the last minute when Chad's mom wanted to have him over night.  She is crazy and amazing enough to want both Dutch and his cousin (also 2)  over at the same time.  Although I wondered how she was going to make this happen and if the kids would get any sleep at all, I agreed.  Sometimes I need to let him have an experience on his own and trust that it will all work out.  It is so good for Chad and I to get a break when we can and this wedding was perfect for that. 

The venue was gorgeous and the bride is someone who is very special to me.  She may not even know that because we don't hang out all too often.  We used to work for the same company and our kids were in daycare together.  Finding another mom to confide in, to text about stuff like big boy beds, to just have as someone who "gets" you as a mom, that is so special.  Tracey, the bride, is amazing because she is one of the nicest and most caring people I have ever encountered.  I am not just saying this.  It is rare to meet someone who instantly wants the good for every person they meet.  Tracey is always thinking of others first whether its the barista at Starbucks, her son, her friends or the kid who is biting our kids at daycare.  She is the very definition of KIND.  Of coarse she chose a very intimate gathering for her ceremony and she had a way of making you feel like if you were there, you mattered to her.  It felt like such an honor and I teared up quite a bit last night just truly feeling the love in the room.  It was BIG and GOOD.

Tracey's son was in the wedding, pillow pet, binky and all.  It was so awesome to see him share in the ceremony and party and to really watch her and her husband love BIGGER with him in the room.  A few times during the night, I wished Dutch was there and not at his grandma's.  I DID high five Chad during the ceremony, when I heard and watched all of the little kid's losing their minds trying to be quiet.  I know he would have had a blast and I know Chad and I would have loved having him there, but it also felt really good to just enjoy the night-off duty (let's be real, you are never off duty, EVER, but sometimes breaks count)

Chad and I were having such a great night.  Chad hit it off with some man named Bob who looked kind of like Santa.  We were sitting next to him during the ceremony, he actually gave me a tissue when I started bawling during Tracey's vows.  He ended up at our table and Chad and Bob were BFF.  I loved it. 

Tracey's mom gave such a loving and heartfelt speech.  This speech is really what changed my perspective and I think the only way I could HEAR IT the way I did, is in this circumstance.  There was a moment she told Tracey and Bret that they needed to enjoy each and every day.  She said people get into the habit of thinking life will get better after __________.  Maybe life will get better after potty training, after school starts, after you win the lotto, after the vacation, after you lose the weight.  She said life is NOW.  She said this was one of the happiest nights of her life and as she said it, you could really feel how this night came so much quicker than she could have imagined.
This reminder really got to me because I find myself, even if its in the back of my mind, doing the whole- I can't wait until after _____.  I know about staying present, I know life is happening now, I have heard this message lot's of other places and I say it in my classes all the time.  Something about THIS time was different.  It sunk in.  I got it.

Each day means something special and I am going to do everything I can to cherish my life.  I know I may forget this from time to time but I know those beautiful reminders are sprinkled throughout our days.  If I look for them, they will help guide me.  I look back at pictures of Dutch as a tiny baby and I miss his little body.  I miss how he felt in my arms as a bambino.  It seems like the blink of an eye before he was walking, then running, now running away from me at times.  I was terrified of becoming a mom, that so much of that beautiful baby stage has gone way too quickly.  All the while allot of me was wishing it would hurry up and pass.  I appreciate all of this and all I can do now is move forward with all of these lessons, all of this perspective. 

Look for the messages.
Be open to receive them.
Love BIG.
The present is a gift.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Art of Letting Go

Below is an old post from like two years ago that made me LAUGH!!!  Please note I do not condone hot hot yoga that cooks your body like a turkey on Thanksgiving.  I LOVE yoga and I do want to practice more but have since determined that HOT yoga (over 95 degrees is NOT for me).  This post made me laugh and smile because 1. I thought it was funny and would have never remembered this day if I didn't write about it. 2. I appreciate the fact that I am reminding myself the art of letting go via blog post.  Perfect timing for me.  I am going to let some shit go right now..............  There.  Gone.  Done.  bye bye.

Now enjoy this old story....

What is yoga to me? It is not only a physical workout that allows my body to feel strong, healthy, challenged and loved but it is a mental cleansing. I go into the yoga room whether its heated or non heated to clear my mental clutter.   Once I enter the room and lay down my mat, I set my intention to clear my thoughts. If there is a mirror I focus on my third eye with such connection, that I often don't pay attention to anything else in the room. It has taken me a few years to find my yoga breath and to really feel that strong connection to myself and let go of the ego that can creep in, especially in hot yoga.
I know how important nutrition and diet can play into my mind and body during class. I have learned many lessons and each class is different. I can honestly say the yoga room is the one place in this world where I really feel connected to my spirit. I know that sounds heavy but its true. Even if the connection is subtle, it is there if I am open to it.
The other night I went to class despite the fact that I ate a LOT of garlic at lunch that day. My breath reeked, my stomach was bloated and I was not in the best condition for a class. My husband was like...."you are still going?! Oh man, I feel bad for whoever is next to you!"
Of coarse I still went. I figure you don't open your mouth in yoga-I will be fine, no one will even notice. I really wanted some yoga that night.
At this point, I can taste the garlic in my mouth like the clove was hidden in there somehow. It was gnarly and I did not like it at all. I even said out loud before I ate it, "oh man, this is going to be bad but I don't care."
Later-I cared.
As soon as I walk into the "silent" room, a fellow yogi who I know, instantly came up to me and wanted to chat. Um......this is a SILENT room so as you can imagine, I was forced to whisper with him. I was picturing my husbands face on his face waving his finger and laughing hysterically while saying "I feel sorry for whoever is next to you!" Chad would crack up if he knew I was frickin whispering with some dude.
BUT-in this moment I was able to practice the art of letting go. Yoga has this way about it that keeps my spiritual radar wide open. I am aware. Not only of my body and the class, but of my spirit. Just let this go-I heard in my head. Don't worry if he thinks your breath is stanky and now thinks you have halitosis and possibly are the grossest yogi alive. Why does that matter? It doesn't....let it go.
Whew, letting go felt so liberating. It was not an instant letting go but after a moment or two, I was able to do it. I realize this is a weird and insignificant story but the letting go lesson is something that can help me throughout my life. If garlic and whispering get me to let go then I will take it!
Yoga is practice, whether its a downward dog pose or the art of letting something ego related go.....its all good and its all practice.
I find my place in the room and lay out my mat and get into dead pose. This is my favorite pose of all time, you just lay there and find inner least that is the goal.
The lady next to me starts HACKING! She is obviously recovering from a cold or throat thing and decided she HAD to come to class. Doesn't she realize how selfish she is being?! How could she do this to me! She is so gross! OMG-if she coughs one more time, I am going to be so pissed. Wait........what am I doing? Why am I thinking these awful things about this nice lady who unfortunately has a cough? What if I just let her cough go? What is so different about a cough vs garlic? Someone could have easily thought the same thoughts about me with garlic. Yoga lesson number two, we are all connected and number three-its always all good. Each time I take a class I realize the yoga is not always in the physical postures-but inside the mind during the class.
Could I ignore this lady's cough? Really ignore it and love her anyways? Send her healing energy and love rather than anything else?
I found I could. It was not easy, each time she coughed for the first instant I was irritated but the seconds that followed allowed me to work through it and let it go, love her and feed my own soul with positivity rather than the negativity.
While I was practicing letting go, I was having an amazing yoga class physically. I felt my body going an inch further when I needed to. Slipping more comfortably into standing bird and feeling places to adjust myself. I do think the physical side of class is a necesary distraction for getting my mind through the other mud. I picture my body holding my mind's hand and saying-"hey, lets walk through this park together."
I have thought about this class the remainder of my week. When something at work is bothering me, I continue to practice the lesson of letting go. It feels so much better than holding on.