Archive | February 2014

Conscious Baby Moments


We find delight in the beauty and happiness of children that makes the heart too big for the body.
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Our son is seven months old now and since we decided to stop at a family of four, I am making even more conscious efforts to revel in everything baby. I was never a “baby person” before I had my own. I thought babies were cute, but I never had the innate way with babies some women seem to have, nor was I particularly interested in babies beyond those of close friends. But once I had my own, I began to see the attraction.

I love the little crackling noise he make after he yawns, the way his face lights up with he sees me. I love the feeling I get when those little hands reach out for me. I love the little baby egg he makes when he chews on his toes. I love how easy it is to make him laugh and how his face changes when he smiles. I love the dance he does when I lay him on his back to change his diaper, arms flailing, feet kicking. I love watching his little legs splashing in the tub and how one leg wakes up before the rest of his body, kicking on his mattress in a sweet baby beat. I love how he snuggles his faces deep in my neck and how he hugs me tight every time I pick him up. I love how he just sits back and takes in the world, whether he’s in my arms or going for a jog in the stroller. I love how his little face makes everyone smile.

My daughter is three now, and as much as I love the little girl she has become, when I look back, I miss the baby she was. I want to revel in the baby I have now, because I know he won’t be a baby forever. Unlike my daughter, for whom I spent precious moments wondering about the person she’d become, for him, I am trying to take it one day at a time and to enjoy him as he is, right now, my beautiful baby boy.

If you have a little one, have you had time to sit and enjoy some conscious baby moments lately? What are some of your favorite conscious baby moments?

The Daughter I Didn’t Have


“It’s no trick loving somebody at their best. Love is loving them at their worst.” – Tom Stoppard

Since I’ve been trying to be more conscious, I’ve been more conscious that I am very often not consciously in control of my mind. Not only am I not in control, but more often than not, even when I try to regain control, I find myself resisting, preferring the well-worn, often negative, yet strangely comforting, path of a victim. A path that so often leads back to my first-born. The one whose existence started me on this journey by her daily presence – a presence that can be so often wild, aggressive and confrontational – that brings out the worst in me and shows me how far I have to go to be the mother I want to be. The one who my mind consistently refuses to accept as she is, spending precious moments wishing she were a happier child, an easier child, a nicer child, a more loving, peaceful child, instead of accepting her for who she is and working towards being more patient, playful, caring and self-controlled.

Before I became a mother, I imagined my daughter would be a little me; a miniature version of myself. She would be quiet and introspective. She would love nature and books. We would run together and go to Mommy and Me yoga classes. We would start out close as mother and baby, and continue to be close as she grew.

Then my daughter was born. And she was nothing like me.

She screamed from the moment she was born and continued for two and a half years. She could be loud, volatile and abrasive. From her early, every-third-day “colic,” to her refusal to sleep, to her visceral panic at anything new, I was often at a loss as to what to do with her. As she has grown, she has matured in the ways children do – learning to walk, talk, play independently, socialize with other children, and yet her strong personality remains. She is nothing like me. She is loud and intense. She feels every emotion with a strength I don’t possess. She is dogged and determined. She hates to be told what do to and refuses to be contained. She is argumentative and fights fiercely for her rights. She lives in the moment and won’t be rushed.

She is my daughter. The daughter I have.

Some days, I still find myself mourning the daughter I didn’t have. The daughter who would cuddle in my lap and run to me with open arms. The daughter who would sit with me on a blanket daydreaming and watching the clouds go by. The daughter who would run laughing, hand in hand with her brother. The daughter who would, after a hug and a kiss, tell me she loved me and lay down to sleep. But this is not the daughter I have.

Because of my difficulty accepting and celebrating the daughter I have, we have had a rocky start, she and I. But it is because of her that I am on this journey towards more conscious living and more conscious parenting. I am determined to move towards conscious acceptance of who she is, because in truth, she is my teacher, my sage towards a better self. Had she been the daughter I’d envisioned, life may have been much more peaceful and smooth, but I would not have been forced on to this path, to confront my demons (or become one) and to (hopefully) come out a better mother on the other side.

Now I just need to keep reminding myself of this when my mind starts down the darker path…

Relevant Links

The Gift of a Strong-Willed Child

Parenting Your Strong-Willed Child

Any parents of strong-willed, spirited children who can relate? Any stories of inspiration to share?

Why Conscious Living?


“Respond; don’t react.
Listen; don’t talk.
Think; don’t assume.”
Raji Lukkoor

Because when I live unconsciously, I find myself adding a piece of cheese cake and bottle of wine to my grocery cart, when consciously, I know what I really need is a run.

Because when I live unconsciously, I spend my “mental health” runs ruminating on why I needed the run in the first place, when consciously, I would appreciate the beauty of my neighborhood and the crisp spring air.

Because when I live unconsciously, I find myself wondering how my daughter wound up kicking and screaming on the bedroom floor, when consciously, I would have listened to her unspoken cues and filled up her “snuggle” tank before she felt the need to throw a fit.

Because when I live unconsciously, I waste nap time on the computer and spend the afternoon with my kids mentally fuming because “I have no time to myself,” when consciously, I would have spent nap time with my breath and my thoughts.

Because when I live unconsciously, I regret words spoken, time wasted, mistakes repeated, when consciously, I find pride in my accomplishments, a healthy meal, a happy day, a genuine connection.

Because when I live unconsciously, I give in to petty complaints, when consciously, I know I have more to be grateful for than so many who truly have the “right” to complain, but don’t.

Because when I live unconsciously, I wonder where the day went, when consciously, I could have savored so many moments I will never have again.

Because when I live unconsciously, I let desires for the weekend blind me to the joys of the week, when consciously, I enjoy each day as it comes.

Because when I live unconsciously, the mental flood of my thoughts takes me to places I’d rather not visit, when consciously, I know I have to power to control my thoughts.

Because when I live unconsciously, I fume, when I live consciously, I breathe.

Have you made a decision to live more consciously? What are your reasons?

In the Beginning…


              A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Lao-Tzu
I had the idea for this blog a year ago. It would be a way for me to record my journey towards a way of more conscious living, a place to connect with others on a similar path, a vehicle for learning and growth on all things conscious, a page where I could hold myself accountable. Now a year later, I’ve still been putting off taking the first step. I made lists of things to do before I post – take more pictures, read other blogs, master WordPress formatting, find more inspirational quotes – and told myself that I must do all of these things before I begin. Yet, if I’m honest with myself – and my potential future readers – what is really keeping my words off the page is fear: fear that no one will read what I write, fear that someone will (and not like what they read), fear that because I’m not living every moment, or even most, consciously, that I have no right to write a blog on living consciously, fear that I will start and fail to keep it up. There are so many things to fear, but if living consciously is about becoming more aware of what is, the I guess admitting to, and owning, the fear is part of the process. So I’m scared, but I’m here. Finally.
Helpful and Related Links
How to Write Your First Blog Post
How to Write Your First Blog Post – Video
9 Reasons My First Blog was Successful…
What motivated you to start a blog?