I wasn't always a mindful mother

 Illustration by Lea McKnoulty

Illustration by Lea McKnoulty

When my children were growing up, mindfulness was not a theme I’d heard about, let alone implemented in our lives.

I asked myself recently, if I could do a re-run to when my children were young, what would I change with the things I've since learned?

I’d take things more slowly and hurry much less!

I’d celebrate them baking a cake as much as I’d celebrate a good report card.

I’d cut back the extra-curricular activities giving them more time for carefree play in the backyard.

I’d bring more calmness to their lives and mine by becoming a sole-tasker, accepting it’s okay to sometimes be late and not get everything done!

I’d keep up the creative messiness.

I’d keep up eating dinner together at the table but I’d make sure the television was off every night!

I’d keep up the bedtime stories and lullabies.

I’d keep up the time we spent in nature but we’d have more quiet reflection there.

We sometimes played out life without really paying attention to the detail! Things happened because they always had and everyone was doing it. If I had my time over I’d try to think more mindfully about how and why we did things, to act on those choices and generally to pay more attention to how we lived our lives.

But no one is perfect and we are all trying to do the best we can with what we know at the time and the circumstances we find ourselves in, including me! We all fall off the wagon from time to time but I’ve learnt you need a base of mindful awareness from which you can get back on.