For the My Motherhood series, we ask different women the same series questions about mindfulness and motherhood to see what works for other women, but also to show how even though we may be different, we are all in this together.
Today we are talking to Jana, the co-founder of Mindful Mamas, an amazing postpartum site for mamas. Jana is a wife and a mama of one.
What does your perfect day look like?
A perfect day seems like a fairy tale to me at this moment. Something I can dream of and hope for one day, yet must hold no attachment to it coming to life or I'll be left disappointed. Motherhood is such a dance. My husband is out the door by 5:45am most mornings to hit the gym before work and miss the traffic during his long commute across LA and and doesn't get home until 7-ish pm at night, so it's me and my 2.5 year old all week. Here goes:
I wake up before my son and quietly sit in meditation to start my day. The house is clean when I wake up, so I can jump right into making a great breakfast for my family. On weekdays, I get my kid off to pre-school, then visit clients all morning until the early afternoon. The afternoon is my quiet, creative time. I love to read astrological charts, study anything to do with awakening or spend time practicing yoga, meditating or getting outside. I'm currently prepping to run a 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training and trying to make time to add more features to my website. If I'm lucky, once a week I get to enjoy lunch with a friend! Once I pick my little buddy up from pre-school between 3:30 - 4pm we usually have a snack and then play for a bit before making dinner. We try our best to get out to watch the sunset 3-4 times a week depending on how much ease there is getting all the things done. After dinner, the bedtime routine starts. I get my little guy bathed, oiled, teeth brushed, pj's on and then I pass him off to my hubby to finish bedtime with books, funny voices and on the spot creative story telling. While he does that, I have a moment to prepare for class and then I go teach yoga or yoga nidra 5 nights a week!
While that is the general outline, the mornings are always an adventure. Depending on what time my private yoga or meditation clients begin, there is a babysitter to help get Freddie off to school or a silly scramble of juggling getting the two of us ready. If I don't get my meditation in first thing in the morning, I do it as soon as I walk in the door after my clients and do pranayama in during the commute! Long deep breathing is my best friend. If we haven't been so good at cleaning as we go, my creative time usually gets compromised. That is something I really want to shift. Those two hours are my heart and soul. And at least once a month, I need time with my girlfriends and date nights with my man. I wish there was more time for those things too!
Do you have any daily rituals you use to center yourself?
Meditation, meditation, meditation. Yoga Nidra is my favorite practice, but it's not quite daily -- more like 3-4 times a week. I also love to cover myself in organic oils infused with plant medicine. I'm currently obsessed with night blooming Jasmine and rosemary essential oils. I also love to eat home-prepared organic plant-based meals, superfoods, herbs and bone broth! Relating to food as medicine and opening to the sensitivity that the food we consume has it's own intelligence that is informing how our bodies organize around health feels to be a big part of our evolution as a species right now. All I want in and on my body are earth made organics.
How do you make time for the different facets of your life?
It's funny you ask this because it is a constant re-balancing act for me. I feel like I have to fight for what I want. Not a battle ground fight, rather a fierce commitment to what I love and know brings me alive. It's the hardest thing about being a mama. It feels like something is constantly taking a hit, something else is begging for my attention and there is always someone asking for time I don't seem to have. I've had to learn to say 'no' a LOT, even to things I love. It's no joke that motherhood and marriage is a compromise and I am so grateful to my girlfriends who love me even though I only get to see them once a month! I am so dedicated to teaching and all the students that show up in classes, retreats and trainings. Teaching truly is one of my great loves this life.
Do you have any special family rituals?
My son and I love to go to the beach for sunset where we have an established gratitude practice. It is so fun to hear him express what he is grateful for through his 2.5 year old eyes. If we don't make it to sunset, we'll do it in the tub before bed or we have a few different gratitude songs that we sing together.
What is the best advice you have ever given or received about motherhood?
Listen to your intuition. Trust your gut.
What is your favourite part of motherhood?
The exponential love expansion. When he was born, I couldn't imagine loving any one more that I loved him the moment I saw him. Yet at every stage, I fall more in love. It's astonishing that the love just keeps growing.