Thai Jasmine

I have had a very tough week with mourning the death of my mother-in-law. My husband’s family dynamics were complicated and the emotions accompanying her death were varied and ran very deep. I am emotionally drained today. To make matters more stressful, travel home was delayed because of weather and my children and I didn’t get home until mid-night only to wake up to the final Friday of school and all the neglected forms to be signed for school parties and homework to be finished. We all were tired and the day started off hectic to say the least. Morning meditation was not in the picture and I don’t think a deep breath was taken until the last child was out the door.

What to make of the day ahead? To start, a walk with the dog and my mother to help sort out the last few days events and clear my head. It’s funny how the act of talking about something doesn’t always work to clear the mind at all. In fact, I find rehashing certain moments, mostly negative energy moments, to work in the opposite way. I have read in another favorite blog written by Gretchen Rubin called the Happiness Project that talking about problems or venting doesn’t make you feel better or happier at all. A good yoga practice or meditation is much better at clearing thoughts and creating peace. The act of focusing on the present moment works wonders with depression and sadness. Thinking about the past or worrying about the future does not help; you can’t undo the past and most things one worries about don’t come to fruition. It seems so obvious, but it is so hard sometimes to do the thing that helps the most—taking time to breath.

I also had on my to do list for the day to teach my final 3-5 year-old class. This class has been a joy to teach but also comes with its own challenges. Class is at the community center and is labeled an “enrichment class” for the early childhood department. What that means is that the nursery school children come to my class after they have had lunch… on Friday. I had talked about the different energy levels of classes before. This class was comedic. The children would come in and we would start with breathing exercises and mini-meditation (cow and cat sounds) and then a sun salutation. One by one the children would have to excuse themselves to use the bathroom as their bodies digestive systems awakened in class. The disruptions are frequent and the different levels of potty training make class very amusing. The kids don’t want to miss a moment so there is always the request to wait before doing the next yoga activity and accidents have happened when things were fun and listening to body signals less important.

I must say that today’s class was bliss. Because of end of the year graduation class celebrations, not all of the chidren attended this final class. The smaller class size created a calmer energy. We played with my new Thumball. I mentioned my excitement about this product in a past post and this new yoga tool works wonders. We used the ABC ball and did yoga poses based on the letter the child had his/her thumb on when catching the ball. We were scared hedgehogs in tight balls and sea otters lying on our backs, elephants spraying our friends and trees blowing in the wind.

The end of class came quickly—savasana with breathing buddies, my special relaxation oil dabbed onto little wrists and temples and sometimes feet or tummies if requested and finally tiny voices remembering to shout “namaste” with hands to hearts.  The end of the year hugs from these little friends helped remove a bit of the sadness that has clinged to (and sometimes drenched) me this week. Summer is here and with it comes deep breathes and the warm breezes and the excitement that comes with change.