The First Steps

With a life of Catholicism behind me – cradle Catholic mother and convert at 40 father – I have shed my old skin and embarked upon a radically different path. I have embraced the world of Buddhism for its gentleness, mindfulness, lack of judgement and, ultimately, personal responsibility and self-awareness.

Today, I am practising this:

Each time a problem arises or a negative feeling or thought surfaces, I stop. I acknowledge its presence. I call it by its name. “Now here is sadness.” I let it stay with me as long as it needs to, I let it go when it is done. I breathe deeply. I focus on my body, my muscles. I locate the tension. I relax those taut muscles, all the while focusing on my breath. And I resume the task at hand.

It sounds so simple, doesn’t it? I can see my old self scoffing. But my new self, today, has got through her usually pretty stressful day and, now teatime, is still smiling calmly. Happy mother, happy children.

That, in itself, I consider a small miracle. And the first steps on my journey to Right Motherhood.

(Of course, they’re not in bed yet!) 😉

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