I was a wild child—messy, long, brown hair and eyes that saw more than what was in front of me.
I wanted the world.
They say becoming a mother changes you. This is true, however, all that is untamed in us remains underneath the meetings, the homework, the dance practice schedules, the basketball games, the laundry, the cooking. Did I mention I also have a full-time career as a school counselor?
This world is demanding. It will suck us dry if we let it—but sometimes, I feel myself creeping out to play.
“Girls! Do you want to have a picnic breakfast outside?”
“Girls! Let’s see who can spit the cherry seeds the farthest!”
“Girls, spread your arms like this and hold your head high. What do you see that is beautiful?”
We are in a time where “mindful” is a buzzword. I would like to be more careful than that.
I would like my mindfulness to mean I truly feel myself. I’m breathing life into who I am so I can show up for my girls—and for that little girl who I once was.
Here’s what I’ve found helpful on my path to becoming a more mindful mother:
1. Create Space
Whenever I get tethered down to schedules with no breathing room, I can feel myself slipping under. I become less patient and less focused. I also become blind to what my daughters really need from me—I mean, we have things to do and places to be! If I am in control of my own reality, I can change my children’s reality too. I now give myself permission to sign my daughters up for less. We choose less, but we breathe more.
2. Practice Gratitude
“Blessed, not stressed.” I repeat this quote to myself several times a day. How we see the world is our choice, and it is so easy to default to seeing almost everything as a problem. But everything is not a problem—it is an opportunity to grow. Pause and take a breath. Then help your daughter clean up the milk she spilled because she was flying her “airplane” (hand) and it crashed into her glass. Tell her it’s a good thing her pilot knew how to do a “water” (milk) landing.
3. Love with All Six Senses
Sometimes I will catch myself parenting on autopilot, which leaves no space for things not going right because then I get annoyed when adjustments need to be made. Becoming present and truly seeing my girls allows for flexibility and love. See them. Hear them. Smell them. Touch them. Taste…well, kisses will do for that one! And number six? Feel them—feel the energy they are sending out. Be present as their parent.
4. Parent, Untamed
I want my girls to understand they create their own limits. I want them to know they can chase their dreams, and the unconditional relationships with those they love will not change. I want my girls to know how to honor themselves by learning all they can when given the opportunity. I want to build hearts of courage and minds of possibilities. I want to step outside of constant scheduling, standardized test taking, and the algorithm of society. I want to teach my girls to be thankful for their breath and the life around them.
Being mindful as a mother is being connected to who I am so my girls do not lose sight of who they are. It makes me smirk, just a little, when I see their spark and how they harmlessly choose not to follow all the rules.
That’s when I know they’re going to be fine—just like their mother.
Author: Amanda Reimers
Image: Author’s own
Editor: Nicole Cameron
Copy editor: Catherine Monkman