Hooray for yoga!
It has been a tough few weeks.
Elijah has been sleeping badly, although to be honest he has never slept well, but it seems that he has regressed so that he has been waking every few hours and is sometimes unsettled and restless. It is his teeth of course, yet more teeth coming through, but good grief what a challenge.
It is not just the lack of sleeping though, but also the fact that he is very clingy at the moment, which is endearing of course, but does make it difficult for me to leave him on his own or even put him down on the floor and out of my arms. My arms are certainly much stronger these days from all the carrying!! Bless him, he loves his cuddles and being attached to one of us in one way or another - our little koala!
Still it doesn't do to complain too much as this is how it is, we have chosen to "be" with him and to be led by him and he seems very happy for it and we love being with him, even if he does kick me in the night and still likes to hang off my boob when others have grown out of it!!
The sleep deprivation is the killer though, torture no less, quite literally too, and it does make for a challenging time of it as your mind becomes less able to focus, your emotions become a little more tricky to manage and getting through the day can be a struggle at times. Not helped that my day job has been ridiculously busy so that my stress levels have risen and I can literally feel the pressure of it all getting to me. I just need sleep!! But it never comes and just serves to demonstrate how resilient we are as human beings because you have to get on with it as there is always the hope that things will change.
For a while though it did feel that things were rather stuck, one day after the next, busy, busy, busy, relentless so that my spirit was sinking and with that sinking spirit all that old stuff coming up again, stress levels rising, OCD habit of clean floors in house returning (ha ha!!) and a short bout of low moods...so that it felt that I had regressed somewhat after years of feeling good.
Still things come and go, and often for a reason and it was with some relief that I headed off to London with my boys last weekend for some much needed yoga and time away from the routine of life back here in Guernsey. Timings were perfect as they tend to be, and the course coincided with another "clarity giving" full moon.
The course was with the infamous Doug Swenson who has been practicing and teaching yoga for 45 years now. Wow. I have to say, and I won't know that I have said this for some time, but he is an incredibly inspiring man and the course was teensy weensy bit life changing. There I said it. The weekend as a whole was life changing. Hooray!
Doug's approach to yoga resonates with me hugely and helped me to soften quite literally. The practice is challenging of course, it is Ashtanga based, but his approach is soft and gentle and based on his observations of the flowing nature of nature and when one embraces this energy in one;s practice, well wow, I have not felt so light in my practice for some time. Nine hours of yoga practice and I didn't ache once, and I practiced poses I have not practiced much before, and with such ease too, so that everything seemed possible, not simply on the mat but off the mat too.
And of course it will come as no surprise that the practice on my mat affected the way I felt off my mat, so that clarity did arrive and with that a strength that I have not felt for a while. So there was shift quite a noticeable one too, back on track and feeling positive again hooray!!!
I managed to enjoy some peaceful time on my own, which is a rare joy and also some fabulous times with my boys going to Selfridges (and loving the snow leopard), wandering around Marylebone and visiting Abbey Road studios. I also got to enjoy a whole night and morning with Elijah when Ewan was celebrating his birthday with friends and we walked all the way from St John's Wood through Regent's Park, up to Primrose Hill and down to Camden for a mooch around the markets, and then back again. I just love spending time wandering around London and it seems Elijah loves it too as he actually stayed in his pushchair the whole walk!!!
We went down to Brighton for a night too to stay with one of our friends, which was great fun, having a good old catch up and feeling so energised (and yet tired too, go figure) from the yoga that day so that I actually didn't want to go to bed. And then didn't want to get up again the next morning!!
So here we are, back in Guernsey, me feeling incredibly inspired and desperate to spend as much time as I can on my mat playing around, keen to share what I have learned and experienced with my students and yet still as busy as ever at work and Elijah still waking frequently. But oh well, it is what it is and no doubt it will change, there is a new moon coming soon, I am quite sure that that will shift things along a little.
Anyhow it all comes as a reminder how much yoga supports our lives, well my life, that bit has become once again blindingly obvious to me, not that I forgot as such, but more so to see it in practice like this, the way it changes how you feel, the strength it gives you and the joy too. I shall most definitely encourage Elijah on my mat with me for maybe he will start to sleep better and then I shall sleep better and the world will seems an even brighter place to live!!
So a big thank you to Doug Swenson and to yoga and to all the yoga teachers who have helped to enlighten the path, I am indeed in awe of this marvellous practice.
With much gratitude. xxx