7:45-Bottle (no judging)
8:00- Crib and lullaby
8:02-"Mama you just sit a while". "Ok, Mady, just for a few minutes, Mommy is very sleepy and needs a good night's rest so we can play tomorrow".
8:05-Mady in crib singing and playing. Mommy lying on the floor ignoring Mady's questions while attempting to meditate, "Just focus on your breathe...feel your tummy rising and falling..accept whatever thoughts come to mind...just be in the moment without judgement".
8: 20- Mady, "Mama, Mama? Are you still there Mama?"
"Shhh, Yes Mady". Then the mind begins to race. Is she getting sick? Oh not with the holiday this week! Did she have too much sugar today? Did her Daddy play with her too much before bed?
Mady (Singing sweetly), "Go to sleep, go to sleep, my dear Mama. I love you. I love you. I will see you in the morning".
This exchange, which also included me leaving the room, sending in her dad, Mady screaming her head off, a second bottle, and 3 more dolly's went on until 9:30pm when she finally was too exhausted to fight sleep one more minute. In my attempts to meditate on her bedroom floor, I had moments where I could accept my frustration with what was happening. I accepted that I was not going to have my 2 hours to myself to read, relax and catch up on Vampire Diaries or Grey's and I was ok. I was not suffering because I wanted things to be different than they were in the moment. However, on just the other side of my peace were the competing thoughts of, "Just go to sleep MADY!!!", "I really want to be in my own bed", and "What am I going to do when I have another baby in 4 months?"
One of the most difficult tasks of life is to remain in the present moment and the same time accepting things as they are- Not thinking about what the future entails, not wanting to be somewhere else, or feel something different. Our minds like to be stimulated, however most of the really meaningful moments occur between the activity-when we are able to go into stillness and just be.
I am not an expert meditator, but I do intend to keep on practicing and looking for the quiet moments, like those spent on the nursery floor.
Jennifer Bronsnick, MSW, LCSW is passionate about supporting moms to be resilient. As a mother of three daughters under 8 and a survivor of postpartum depression and anxiety Jennifer knows exactly how challenging motherhood can be. She also knows that there is hope for all of us and with accurate information, support and inspiration that mothers and families can thrive.
Jennifer’s years of clinical experience as a social worker and her own personal journey gives her the unique ability to guide other moms on their path to health and wellness. You can also learn more about Jennifer, the services she offers and purchase her books on maternal self-care at www.themindfulfamily.com/jennifer.