I’ve never been the most zen person. If there is a Wikipedia page that’s dedicated to Type A Nut Job, I’m pretty sure you’ll see my mug next to it. I have a particular way that I do things and I’m always planning for the next task. I wake up with a schedule running through my head and inefficiency is a four-letter word. Color-coded calendars and crossed off to-do lists line the walls of my happy place and while this has served me well, it’s also made life difficult at times. #takeaGIANTchillpill
After my son was born and we started discovering the depths of his vision and muscle disorders, my need for control skyrocketed. This was New Mom Stress on full tilt along with a nice-sized case of postpartum depression and anxiety. If my husband was 20 minutes late leaving work and I had plans to make us dinner, I was in tears.
My whole life was revolving around this tiny human who needed WAY more than the usual amount of care and if the plans I had made for myself shifted even a little bit, I was a mess. Making plans was my way of having some control over what was going to happen next. I love mastering a goal and when my son wasn’t mastering any of his milestones, it affected me in a huge way. Nobody wants for their child to struggle or be behind the curve, and all we kept hearing was what was wrong with him. This teacher-pleasing, straight-A-student was losing it. It was affecting my marriage, my mental health, and my experience as a mother.
Things had to change and that’s when I found yoga.
Around here, there is a yoga studio on every corner and there are more yoga teachers than places to buy a beach chair. It was intimidating for me to try and join a class where I would fit in and feel comfortable. I found a small studio and the women couldn’t have been more wonderful. Walking into this place felt like a warm Olaf-approved hug. I quickly let go of my insecurity about my abilities and just enjoyed doing the work. My practice blossomed and I felt a huge sense of pride when I was able to do a pose that was difficult in a previous class. The other side of that coin is that I was also more accepting of myself when I struggled. A difficult class was no longer a reflection on me, it was simply something to move on from and let go. I felt challenged in a healthy way, rather than feeling beaten down and defeated.
I practiced yoga there for about a year and although I have changed my fitness routine, I still use the lessons I learned through yoga every day. Whatever kid-phase I’m facing is simply a tough yoga pose that I can practice and grow from (like the temper tantrum currently happening 6 inches from my face while I’m trying to write this. Over a pop tart. That he asked for. Breathe in, breathe out. One crazy day on the toddler train does not mean that I have failed at motherhood. It is one day and I can start fresh tomorrow. This is a lesson that I have to relearn from time to time, but I’m getting there.
How many of us mommas need to learn this? Whether we are living our best Pinterest-mom life, or just barely making it until bed time in a house that is a disaster zone: WE ARE ENOUGH. I always remember her telling us that whatever we can do was the exactly perfect amount. If our mom game today is not as strong as yesterday, that’s okay! Focus on your strengths and the obstacles you were able to tackle, rather than obsess over the ones that made you stumble. This can be a hard lesson to remember in this age of the picture perfect Insta-life, but it is so, so important. You are not the mom you compare yourself to, and she isn’t you. So one more time for y’all in the back: YOU. ARE. ENOUGH.
I can 100% say that yoga changed my life and how I relate to myself and others around me. I’m still a Type A Nut Job, but I have been able to find a new version of Me that can live life differently than I used to, with a little more zen.