Nourishing ourselves as mothersThis week, as a prelude to Mother’s Day here in Australia, I’ve been enquiring into my feelings and thoughts about this day. I’ve been enjoying doing this amongst the community of mothers on the Parenting with Presence yahoo forum.
I’ve also been listening to The Inspiring Women tele-summit this week (http://www.inspiringwomensummit.com/) and have certainly been inspired, hearing women talk about the power of connecting with each other, nourishing ourselves, and celebrating ourselves as women.
I’ve also been noticing how much I focus on the things I am not doing with and for my children, rather than focussing on celebrating and appreciating all the things that I have done, and am, as a mother.
This morning, after my Alexander Technique lesson, I went for a walk on the beach, and was feeling joyful, vibrant, and sensual.
On my walk, I realised that it is up to me to keep allowing myself to receive this kind of nourishment. Up to me to notice when I am feeling flat and lacklustre, and to know that I can do things that will fill me up and return me to a sense of joie de vivre and radiance. This morning, it was with my Alexander lesson and my walk on the beach, and yet there are plenty of things I can do at home, with my children, to keep letting nourishment flow in.
Some things that nourish me are: putting on music (Madonna is one of my faves) and dancing in my kitchen; sitting on the deck in the sun for a while; doing my breathing exercises; roller-blading with my children, (or without them, in which case, I’ll have my iPod on and my favourite songs of the moment blasting), eating food that I love, (raw chocolate is doing it for me at the moment); having a rose oil foot bath with my sweeties, going for a bike ride, or a swim, reading things that inspire me in books or websites, listening to tele-seminars, and so on….
My mum is staying with us at the moment, and last week I’d been feeling “grumpy” for several days. One evening, Lana (8) was reading from my childhood book, A.A.Milne’s “When We Were Very Young,,” and I realised that I had been shutting out my mum’s love. So I asked her if she would read “Vespers” to me, which is what I remember her reading to me as a child. She read it to me, and as I lay my head on her lap, tears fell down my cheeks. After that, all five of us stayed on the couch, whilst Lana and I took turns reading from the book. There was such a sense of love and togetherness, like the nourishment was circulating around us. Since then, the grumpiness has disappeared.
When I allow myself to receive nourishment like this, then I have plenty to give to my children and my family – I really want to cuddle and laugh and play and be present with them; there’s a sense of everything flowing with ease. When my nourishment tank is on empty, then I want to contribute to them, but it takes a big effort. I just don’t have much to give.
Cuddling up with my eight year old daughter yesterday morning, I thought of us being like a love circuit… when I allow love in, then I have an aliveness and love that just flows out of me, and it comes back again, and around and around it goes.
So, this Mother’s Day, and every day, I intend to keep an eye on my nourishment gauge, and notice if it is getting low, and do something about it, so that it can flow into me freely, and I can give the love and joy and laughter and play that my family love.
And this links back to the celebrating myself bit - when I create opportunities to receive nourishment, then I am valuing myself, and celebrating myself, and life. It’s very simple, and feels yummy!
This was first published at Kindred in 2010: