Last week we had a super full moon which means that the moon appears bigger in the sky because it is closer to the earth, I however missed it. I didn’t get to see it because I was sick.
The full moon energy causes the rise and fall of the tides in our oceans. Us humans are made up hugely of water so it makes sense that the moon cycles would affect us too. My experience with the moon is that the bigger and brighter it gets in our skies the more it is able to highlight things within us that we are ready to release, things that are no longer serving us. I remember when I was teaching in schools on a weekly basis in Newry the teachers would ask me if it was a full moon because they noticed that the children had gotten more difficult or were really loud and running around like mad things! So the arrival of half term for a lot of schools in the UK this week might be a good or a bad thing! For a lot of parents school holidays can be busier and more stressful as the children are at home all the time and are wanting to be entertained!
School holidays are worked into the calendar because both children and teachers need a break from the constant learning and it’s important to remember that you as a parent need a break too! Although I know it can be difficult to get because there is no holiday when you’re a parent so for anyone needing to hear it; it is OK for you to want to take time away from your children! It is OK for you to feel exhausted, it doesn’t make you any less of a great parent, it simply makes you human!
Mindfulness is all about awareness so if you realise that you are exhausted, that you are tired, that a break would be great that is the first step. Taking the break however, may seem to be more difficult but sometimes all we need is a few minutes; could you send the kids out to the back garden to do a scavenger hunt that will take them 20 minutes? Do you have a neighbour or friend who will take your children for an afternoon so you can take some much needed time to yourself? If you live by the sea the beach is a great source of entertainment for children and it has the added benefit of completely wearing them out so they might go to sleep earlier or quicker then normal.
I think sometimes when we think we need a break we think it has to be a long time but sometimes just stopping for a minute and taking three deep, mindful breaths can be enough. You don’t always need to get a whole afternoon off, 10 minutes of walking mindfully around your garden and admiring the nature around you can sometimes be enough.
Mindfulness in action
Notice how you feel. Right now, close your eyes and take some slow deep breaths and think about how you feel. Are you tired, happy, sad, angry, frustrated? It doesn’t matter what the feeling is, just notice it. Now ask yourself if you need to do anything with that feeling. Do you need to change anything, move anything, release anything? Maybe you do or maybe you don’t. if you do need to do something see if you can allow yourself that. Can you do what you need to do? Just for a minute.