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.
I'm thrilled that Lauren is featured on the blog today. Lauren has her Masters in Marriage and Family Therapy, but ended up changing paths to be a yoga instructor. She is a wife, mama of one little boy, with another boy on the way! She is the creator of the wonderful blog called Boon & Boys. Follow her on Instagram to see all her great yoga adventures!
What does your perfect day look like?
Honestly my perfect day would consist of being with all the people I love most.
I've always said that where I am and what I'm doing doesn't matter as long as I'm with the people I care about the most.
Though, I will say that my perfect day would consist of my son sleeping better than he ever has, me not feeling any pain or fatigue, lots of good food and dessert (that is somehow magically really good for me too), and some pampering. Add that to a slow day spent loving on my family and I would be in heaven.
Do you have any daily rituals you use to center yourself?
I've never had one thing that I've done on a regular basis to center myself.
I've meditated, kept a gratitude list, done yoga, and written in a journal, but nothing has stuck as something that I do daily without fail.
Although it may not seem like a centering ritual in the traditional sense, one thing that centers me every night is watching TV with my husband. It gives us time together and is something I always look forward to at the end of a long day.
How do you make time for the different facets of your life?
I don't know that I excel at this. Becoming a mother upturned my life in ways I didn't imagine.
My son wasn't a particularly easy child and my life shifted in many ways all at once. It hit me harder than I thought it would.
I still don't know that I've found a good way to make time for myself in all the ways I need, but it's a journey and I'm getting there. I do know I don't want to miss anything.
I have had to learn how to cherish the time I have with my husband even if it isn't just the two of us.
I've found ways to workout while also playing with my son. I've been able to continue teaching yoga at least a little bit by bringing mommy and me yoga classes to studios near me.
I've given myself permission to let my son play independently while I work on my book. It's a dance and sometimes I am more graceful than others, but part of life is learning as we go.
Do you have any special family rituals?
We are definitely creatures of habit. I always joke that if we ever needed an alibi it would be easy to remember where we were because we do the same things every weekend. Weekends are when we go out to eat.
We've moved a lot (while my husband finished his doctoral program and then entered active duty as a Psychologist in the Air Force) and we always find our favourite restaurants in each place we live and then go to them religiously. We have attended story time at Barnes and Noble since my son was 4 months old and still do so to this day.
I also bathed with my son from two months old until the beginning of this pregnancy.
Even though I no longer take a bath with him, we have nightly ritual of brushing our teeth together as a family (accompanied by a silly song), bath time, and then family reading in bed.
My son still nurses to sleep and sleeps with us every night.
We didn't enter parenthood planning to bed share, but we chose that path based on my son's temperament and how we wanted to raise him.
Now we love being able to watch him sleep every night and spending that extra time together as a family (even though I'm the one who ends up often sleeping at the bottom of the bed).
What is the best advice you've ever given or received about motherhood?
I'm not sure it's advice as much as a sentiment that has stuck with me, but growing up my mom always said that it is much harder to be a good parent than a bad one. I'll never forget that.
What is your favourite part of motherhood?
This was by far the easiest question for me to answer. Without a doubt, my favourite part of motherhood is how deeply loved I am.
Nothing beats holding my son at the end of the day as he sleeps nestled in my arms. No matter how long the day has been and no matter how many challenges we've had, I forget it all in those moments and want time to stand still.
When he runs up to me and throws his arms around me like we've been apart for a lifetime, when he wants me over anyone else, when he defends me and tries to fix all my problems, and when he tells me he loves me, I know it's all worth it.