To conserve energy I usually stay relatively close to home. I don't have the energy to race around to every toddler attraction in the city or go on epic hikes in the mountains. Even going to the grocery store can be too much. We don't have a group of mommy friends to hang out with because after so many years with a chronic illness, I have few friends. I think I come across as weird because my life is so different. I wouldn't be able to keep up anyways. I took my son to an outdoor waterpark once and I felt like a major champion being able to that for him.
I sometimes feel bad that i cant do the big things for him more often BUT THEN I REALIZED WHAT We HAD GAINED IN RETURN WAS FAR MORE VALUABLE.
I am giving him space and peace, and the ability to be and explore. We are not rushing or racing. I have time to let him jump in puddles and investigate how the water runs down the curb into the catch basin on the corner. We often follow the garbage truck on its route to watch it lift the bins with its mechanical arm. We have watched the chickadees flit about in a hedge or the flocks of birds moving in synchronized groups like waves between the fruit trees. At home, I have set up a Montessori based environment so he is adept at playing independently. He has the ability and space to concentrate on a project of his own making- like rearranging all the couch pillows, transferring laundry from one basket to another or lining up toy cars. We have never missed a nap (except for a handful of travel days when we go on family vacations).
He goes to Grandma's house 2 days a week and my neighbour comes over to take him to the park once a week so that I can rest. It's a nice quiet life.
It is amazing to watch him in deep concentration. I discovered this one morning, I was feeling particularly awful and had no one to help me. I do usually try to do a small outing in the morning to pass the day and give us something to do, but this day it was not possible. I surrendered and just laid on a pillow on the floor of the hallway. My son soon became engaged in an amazing baby project with deep concentration involving pushing the laundry basket up and down the hallway, filling it and emptying it of random items. It was the first time I saw him deeply concentrate on something. Since I had not distracted him with an outing, he had the space to develop his own project and feel the joy of deep concentration or flow. I could feel it too. Now two, he has the ability to concentrate on his own for longer periods of time.
Sounds boring right- yes it can be. But my mind is slowly starting to turn around and enjoy the beautiful present moments. Toddlers find everything fascinating and have such a beautiful energy. If I can let go of worrying about my struggles and enter his world, just by watching and being present with him, I can gain so much. When I can be fully present with him while he is engaged in one of his simple joys I feel a palpable shift in my energy.
Some days I forget to be present. I am focused on my struggles, counting the minutes until my husband gets home, or I try to do too much, and end up frustrated, tired and not-present. I have to remind myself to sit with the boring, stay present and experience the peace of a slow day.
Anyone can experience this peace. It's ok not to be busy; not to be rushing and racing. To allow yourself and your family to be in open spaciousness and just see what emerges.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
I have been living with chronic illness and exploring the healing journey for over 20 years. I have been very blessed to learn from many great teachers and have the opportunity to explore many healing paths. I offer what I have learned from that journey to you in the form of aslowerkindoflife.com. I love pondering the mysteries of life and how it all weaves together into a beautiful journey.