A mother and son doing yoga together


How Doing Yoga With My Son Taught Me To Be Present And Appreciate Him More

Dec 24, 2018

How often do you stop what you’re doing, sit down with your kiddo and take the opportunity to stare at their sweet face? Sometimes I feel like it’s not often enough. When I do take the time, it’s always worth it for the things I notice and appreciate (like the fact that my eldest son has this tiny patch of freckles on his nose that are possibly the cutest thing in the world).

I’ll be the first to admit it’s not always easy to be present with kids.

I really do love stealing those moments whenever possible. But as we all know, life can get hectic, and sometimes one-on-one time has to be scheduled. With that in mind, I decided to try a family yoga class with my four-year-old.

In that one hour class, I took the time to appreciate the sweet little things he does at this adorable age. The way he twirls his hair or sticks out his tongue when he’s focusing, how he listens attentively, how seriously he took his duty as a mini yogi and wanted to do each pose “right." He looked to me for guidance, support and approval, which was just about the sweetest thing to see.

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Of course, these are things he always does, but it doesn’t always register for me how fleeting or special they are, even though I’m with my kids all the time.

I’ll be the first to admit it’s not always easy to be present with kids. It can feel pretty boring, or like there are a million things on the to-do list that are being ignored in favour of doing what feels kind of... unproductive.

In that one hour class, I took the time to appreciate the sweet little things he does at this adorable age.

But that’s exactly the point of yoga — not to be productive, but to be present, and most importantly, to accept things exactly as they are in this moment. Not how you want them to be, or how they’ll be later. But how they are, right now. In the words of my yoga instructor, “this moment is your true home.”

In my usual yoga class, I’m determined to hold the pose longer, push myself further and if I fall down or get stuck, I want to correct it immediately. But as I watched the way my son learned, he was so accepting of every limitation and of his own capabilities. When we fell out of our half-moon pose together, we didn’t rush to correct it. Instead, we lay on the floor together, laughing and enjoying the moment.

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This is exactly the attitude I’ve since tried to bring into our daily lives, whether we’re sitting down for a nice moment together or going on a special date. I may not enjoy vrooming a truck back and forth, or pretending to be The Joker chasing a little Batman and Superman, but what I do enjoy is the sound of my kids’ giggles, their pure joy, the hilarious things they say and their sweet expressions during those moments.

At the beginning of our yoga class we went around the room, each saying what we’re thankful for. When it was my son’s turn to answer, he said “mommy,” which made my heart so full. It also made we really appreciate how fleeting this age is. Because my guess is “mommy” won’t be his answer in 10 years, or 20. But in that moment, and in most moments for him at this age, I am what he is most grateful for. I am his true home.

Article Author Katharine Reid
Katharine Reid

Katharine is a freelance writer and editor who loves bookshops, nature and chocolate. The former editor of a health website, she now spends her days with her two adorable, energetic boys. She can usually be found either going on outdoor adventures with them, or attempting to get them outside so they stop destroying the house.

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