Yoga Space

April 5, 2011

Open the blinds. Ignore the piles of dirty clothes. Clear away the Legos. Unroll my mat. Close the door. Push play on one of Sarah's podcasts. Begin to breathe. 

Ever since our return from Bulgaria I have been doing yoga in the kids' bedroom. I know it's kind of an unlikely spot and perhaps even a bit risky because of the Polly Pocket/Lego terrain, but it has been working well for me. It works because it is the room that gets the most natural light in the mornings. I like being surrounded by that morning light. When we were staying with our friends in Bulgaria, I would climb up to their yoga room. Yes, they have such a spacious house that they have yoga room. A tower room surrounded with windows and views. Views of the mountains. Views of the city (Sophia). A yoga mat and lots of early morning sunlight. It really is a dreamy space that makes me yearn for my own yoga room one day. 

So when we returned to our military issued townhouse in Sicily, I actively searched for a new space to practice yoga. This "yoga space" of mine is nowhere near as perfect as that room in Bulgaria, but in addition to the natural light, I also like the fact that it is a clear reminder of where I am in this stage of my life. 

During the early years of motherhood when I was so sleep deprived and unsure of myself, yoga was an escape, but a guilty escape. Like an addict desperately seeking that next fix, I craved my yoga time and reveled in going to classes where no one was crawling on me, sucking on me, peeing on me, or crying. My body ached as it relaxed. It physically hurt as I exhaled the tension in my limbs and in my mind. I would often fall asleep in the final resting pose. I beat myself up for not practicing on a more regular basis while simultaneously feeling guilty about craving that time away from my role as mama. 

Things began to shift as my kids grew a bit older and they were both in a preschool where I could do my yoga classes in the same building during their schooltime. The guilt dissipated as I became steadier and more confident in my mothering, while also growing stronger in my yoga practice. In addition to taking classes, I also returned to practicing on my own. With our move to Sicily, I was fortunate to find a teacher who also happened to be a good friend and neighbor, but with her move last summer, things began to come loose again and nothing felt quite right. The space in my living room felt too dark and awkward. My bedroom was too cramped. The kids' room never even entered my mind as a possible space until our return from Bulgaria and suddenly I saw the light. Literally. The morning sunlight flooding the open space next to their bunk bed and it all clicked. 

This current space feels right. I am no longer sleep deprived and craving a momentary escape from motherhood. Instead, I am firmly in the middle of it. As I push aside the tangled nest of stuffed animals and the Star Wars guys, I smile to myself and occasionally grumble about messy kids and then I turn inward and let that morning light guide me to where I need to be that day.
Stacy said...


Sonja said...

You're so lucky you enjoy yoga. I don't, but wish i did, since it seems so beneficial to busy, tired moms. Have fun!

ivey @ said...

you nailed the guilt part when our kids are young. i had never really given it a name, but there it is. just found your blog and i love it!

Cami said...

Lovely post. I feel the same way about all my exercise. But there is something about yoga. When I use a video, it's just not the same as doing it in a sunlit room.

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