As a New Mom at Yoga

{I feel a need to caveat first by saying that I am a registered yoga teacher. I am currently teaching classes and I enjoy this role, completely and without judgement of any of my students. Unfortunately, I am not as kind to myself which is part of my journey…}

As a mom at yoga class, I feel many things. I feel the joy of having alone, quiet time on my yoga mat. I feel the roundedness of my shoulders from hours and hours of carrying, nursing and caring for my baby and toddler. I feel the lack of strength in my core, in my stretched abdominals. My mama gut is an empty cavern where baby was and muscles have yet to return. It’s only been X months, I tell myself. I feel the tightness in my hamstrings, hips and chest because I spend much of my life sitting or moving forward. Hips are the emotional powerhouse and there are a lot of emotions in being a mom.

I am not a new mom in the sense of new to yoga (I’ve been practicing 10+ years). I am not a new mom in the sense of first time baby (I have two adorable children awaiting my return after yoga class). But, I feel very much like a new mom in yoga. My body is new to doing this practice after months of growing another being and a few post-natal months of snuggles, healing, nursing, sleeping, repeat. My body is a battlefield of what was, what is and what it can be.

In the yoga class I went to a few nights ago, the teacher guided us into Wheel pose. The pose, in essense, turns your body into the shape of a bridge with your arms, spine and legs making the architecture. For me, it is the “mother” of all backbends. It requires intense arm strength, open chest and shoulders, strong core, an ability to release tightness in the hips and direct the power of the legs. As a new mom, this felt unavailable, almost unattainable. Round 1, I attempted half-heartedly knowing that I wouldn’t go there. Round 2, I decided to try again, blocking all negative chatter and focusing on my teacher’s words. I still didn’t make it up. But I got closer, which was my intention. That was victory.

I am learning to love my struggles and victories equally, which is part of why I feel drawn to yoga. Yoga accepts you as you are, today, as is, no worries. Yoga works towards quieting the chatter of the mind, often the ego egging us on. On that particular evening, I didn’t achieve full Wheel pose, but I set it up and made progress in my intention of the pose. Progress is progress. My intention is there and now I work towards it. As the saying goes, “Know Yoga, Know Peace. No Yoga, No Peace.”



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One thought on “As a New Mom at Yoga

  1. Poppy October 23, 2012 at 11:27 am Reply

    Welcome to public blogging 🙂 This is so well written, I look forward to more from the Mama Gut. Also, you should have probably put a “don’t try this at home” caveat for idiots like me who have never taken yoga before, but wanted to see if they could do the Wheel pose. The short answer is no.

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