By Laura Mills
“Time” just doesn’t mean what it used to in my house; every spare moment during which I can wipe the kitchen counter or (on the best days) sip some tea has dramatically increased in value. These days, I compose my classes and write my blogs during my daughter’s naptime—when she naps, that is—so of course I usually find myself trying to take advantage of every minute.
One day shortly after Thanksgiving festivities had upset our usual routine, my daughter started crying as soon as I put her down and didn’t stop as usual. I waited a few minutes outside her door; I went downstairs and set up my computer; optimistically, I even filled my teapot. But the crying intensified, so I returned to her room to check in. Suffice it to say she did NOT want to nap in her crib that day; half an hour later I was sitting in the middle of her floor, rocking her as she sniffled and snuggled into me. Finally, she fell asleep, and not knowing how to return her to her crib without waking her and beginning the process over again, I stayed put.
My mind wandered, but before long my back hurt and my legs numbed, which drew my attention to my body. I knew my options for changing position were limited, but I was able to pull my belly in, extend my spine, and draw my shoulders slowly up and then back and down. I lengthened the crown of my head to the ceiling, tucked my chin a little more, and then begun to coordinate my body’s rocking with slow and measured breaths. After a little while my daughter’s breaths seemed to synch with mine, and for over an hour that afternoon she slept while I held her…both of us at peace.
Yoga doesn’t get much better than that.