If you resemble the new moms on baby food adverts
– reclining and relaxed supermodel material, with spotless, cooing baby and a gorgeous man who smiles his way into your huge designer kitchen with the ‘we still have a fifty-shades thing going on’ look then read no further. You will be wasting ten minutes of your life that you may want back later on. If, however, you have a baby who sounds like Shrek from both ends, a grumpy sleep-deprived partner and are the owner of two nuclear-active breasts then, please, read on.
Firstly, well done! You Have Created Life!!!
You and you alone (well not quite) have produced another human being with their trillions of cells and tiny little organs – and you did it perfectly. While babies are little miracles for which we are most grateful, the immediate time after having a baby is hard joy. All delight is tempered with a demanding routine which can challenge you mentally, physically and emotionally. Lack of sleep and hormone levels jumping around like a bobcat in a telephone booth may leave you feeling that you should have responded to God’s call during your teenage years and joined the enclosed contemplative order of Poor Clares.
Support of all kinds, be it people or devices, are usually most welcome during this time of transition. And once you have a clean bill of health it may be time for you to consider some gentle yoga as an additional prop, one that helps you accept and love your new life (and a new you), just as it is. Yoga is loving kindness and as Pema Chodron (Buddhist nun and mother) said
“Without loving kindness for ourselves, it is difficult, if not impossible, to genuinely feel it for others”.
So if any of the following sounds familiar, it may be time to consider increasing your dose of self-love and care;
- 1. Self-judgement – If you get a glimpse of your naked body in the mirror and think you look like a Salvador Dali painting (nothing is where it should be).
- 2. Self-sacrifice a.k.a. Slash and Burn – If you are ruthless about doing everything perfectly for baby and don’t give a rat’s ass about doing anything for you.
- 3. Self-neglect – If you step out of the shower and think you hear Tim Burton’s voice offering you a part in the “Planet of the Apes 2”.
On the yoga mat, you are loved and acceptable just as you are. Allow a gentle yoga practice to be one of your supports in replenishing your depleted resources. Just ‘turning up’ in itself is an act of self-love. The sense of wholeness that yoga can give, reminds you that YOU are the perfect parent for your baby, just as you are.
“Be yourself, Everyone else is taken.”