I consider myself pretty fortunate these days. I got to spend some time Friday afternoon with my daughter (we shall call her Beans) at an amazing location, off the beaten path. Her wonder for the world makes me smile. Every tiny bird that flew by us was to her amaze, she played with sticks, stones and pine cones and I watched and let her explore. The energy was simple, BE the venue promotes this energy in the most natural way of course as it is a Yoga Retreat, but what made it more magical was that Beans seemed so at home and so free to take in what the world offered her. She was experiencing everything with such wonder, on a path I had walked several times, she gave me insight to experience it, not just walk it. So I started to wonder what it was that made it so different, I had walked down the path and more than appreciated the beauty of the place. I heard the birds, taken in the beauty, felt the trees and the stones, at least I thought I had. Something made me stop and be present in that afternoon with her. As a yoga instructor I often say in a class “let go of what brought you here today and give yourself the gift of presence in this moment and for the time we share” these words are all to familiar but for the first time myself I felt this presence on a whole new level. As Beans and I held hands and she stumbled with her new upright movement I felt so much joy and was reminded of a time I had nothing else to do but be present, I remember as a kid heading down to be by the water close to my home and just being with a few friends, maybe a little innocent mischief and lots of laughter. The feeling of “being” is something I fear some of the kiddos today are missing out on. We have all heard it being said; “too much screen time, too many structured activities, too much this, not enough that…”. This train of thought is why we are seeing more yoga in the schools and more mindfulness being talked about. IS it really working? As a children’s yoga teacher, I’m thrilled that it is more common. My fear is that yoga becomes more regimented, mindfulness becomes something kids are graded on. I would love to see children’s yoga as more of a medium to encourage movement, creativity, healthy habits and tools to keep the sense of wonder that my Beans had so naturally while in nature. So get outside, teachers I encourage you to think outside the box… teach to your curriculum but encourage wonder and experience life with your kiddos move your bodies, open up the channels your kids will thank you for it and so will their families. I am so fortunate to live in a community with a school that already does this so well, and so fortunate to have friends in the school system that really embody a sense of wonder when teaching and hold the passion for sharing that wonder with their kiddos, students, friends and more. The Little Feet Yoga philosophy on movement for our kiddos is really something I believe in, it aligns so nicely with my own experience and ideals and hope you all take a moment to check it out.
Shout out to a few moms, teachers, and otherwise that are inspirations in keeping the childlike wonder alive in the world; Liz L. Kate I. Allysun W. Julie F. Catherine L. Terri N. Linda M. and of course my momma for letting me be a kid, get dirty, play with rocks, plash in puddles, sing silly songs, explore the world.. but most of all letting my kids do all of that and so much more, because “hands can wash, so get them dirty” xox