LV Yoga, Fareham
Today we’re exactly two months into ‘lockdown’, and in this moment I’m feeling broken. For those who don’t know, as well as running LV Yoga, I’m also a full-time parent of the most amazing, almost three year old, little girl. We are also going through the process to adopt a second one. Madness, I know!
This morning my daughter has fallen and ‘hurt’ herself twice already, and I’m sure these won’t be the only tumbles she takes today. She’s fairly accident prone even on a good day. But what I noticed today is that she has only taken these tumbles in the brief moments when both of us have been busy on our phones or laptops with work. Which leads me down a very scary path of self-doubt…
There’s this increasing battle of work versus parenting. Of course, my heart tells me to forget about work and enjoy this time as a family. But my head tells me that I need to earn money, I need to keep my business active and afloat, and I need to support all those people who I promised I’d be there for during lockdown. And the more I reduce my class schedule and focus on my family, the less money I am receiving into my business and the more risk there is to me losing my business altogether.
So what’s the answer here? Because I surely don’t know right now. Thoughts on a postcard please…
This morning I’ve been talking with my daughter’s, brother’s adoptive Mum (yes, adoptive families get very complicated!) and it seems we’ve both been struggling with judgement. We hear of people who are treating lockdown in a variety of different ways, some strictly following the guidelines, others flaunting the rules to their own benefit, and some who simply can’t cope with having their kids at home with them full time so turn a blind eye. And while we all have our own ways and beliefs when it comes to this very surreal climate we’re in right now, why is it that we are choosing the judgement of others as the acceptable topic of conversation? You only need to go on any local community Facebook group to see the level of judgement people are exercising right now. Then I ask, is this because of the current pressures that we are judging others so often? Or is this simply how society is anyway, but we feel now that we have permission to judge others? Either way, it’s completely out of character for the both of us to be having a conversation like this.
Then I had a realisation. I’m behaving like this because I am judging myself. In this moment I feel ashamed that I am ignoring my daughter to work. I also feel ashamed that I’m unable to keep my income stream steady and I feel as though I’m letting my business fail. There are so many ideas I have for my business and so many avenues I can take to help others and spread the love that is yoga, and now is the PERFECT opportunity to do that. But why would I do any of that when my daughter needs me? But am I really failing her? She is lucky enough to have two parents at home right now, and yes we need to work, but we do so in shifts. Is it simply that she’s been cooped up for two months and has had the luxury of the attention of two parents 24/7, that she’s just getting used to it? So is therefore acting out when she doesn’t receive that level of attention? Who knows what goes on in a child’s mind…
Nonetheless, it doesn’t stop that judgement and guilt, feeling like a failure on both accounts.
Now, this isn’t a pity party, I can assure you. My aim here is to be human. To demonstrate that it’s ok to have moments of self-doubt, to be hard on yourself and to feel ashamed. They are all perfectly normal reactions under the circumstances. And they are just moments. They are not who you are, you are not a failure and you’re just doing the best you can in any given moment. Even when that ‘best’ feels like your worst. It’s ok. Because these are the moments we look back on and learn from. These are the defining moments when we learn not to judge ourselves, when we learn empathy for others, when we learn we are enough, and when we learn that these feelings are just temporary. Be in the moment, however s**t you feel, just be ok with that. It’s just a moment in time.
If yoga has taught me anything, it’s that we are all different and we are all human. And when we realise these things and truly accept them, judgement cannot exist. Not of ourselves or others. Yes, there are times when the ego creeps back in and we start getting a bit judgey again, but in these moments, if we can accept them as just temporary and try to remind ourselves that we are all different and we are all human, then we bring ourselves back to being heart centred, loving beings again.
So for today, I feel like a crappy parent and a failed business owner. And that’s ok. Because tomorrow, my daughter will still love me, my business will still be there, and the sun will shine again.
I shall leave you with two of my favourite quotes, they may be somewhat contradictory, but the point is really that they’re both the truth. Just simple perspectives from people who are both different yet both human. For me, they prove there is no right or wrong. There is no ‘one size fits all’ answer. So when I’m stuck between parenting and running a business, I know I can feel confident in whichever choice I make in that moment. Because every day I am different and I am human.
“Change will not come if we wait for some other person, or if we wait for some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change we seek” – Barrack Obama
“If you want to change the world, go home and love your children” – Mother Theresa