It’s almost here…

I am 3 days away from leaving my home, my bed, and my life for over 6 weeks.

On Friday, we pack up and head north for a summer of family and adventures. I will mostly be single parenting as my hubby will be staying in DC.

Since May, I have been planning and making a list of the things I NEED TO DO in order to keep my cool, stay mentally and physically healthy (please note, not making lists of things I need to pack for the kids!)  while care taking and trying to enJOY myself as well. You see, it’s not ALL about them!

So let me give you some of my  insider tips on how to take good care of yourself this summer while traveling, for when schedules are crazy and for when mama needs a break!!

  1. Plan, plan, plan- look AHEAD to what YOU need for the summer. Have a crazy week with family coming and kids home? Great, try to take out everything else from your schedule.  And plan to clean and move your body and drink lots of water the week BEFORE they come so that you are READY and feeling in flow when they arrive. Partner going to be away for the week? NO PROBLEM- line up childcare NOW for the time they are gone so that YOU still get the time YOU need to feel good in your body.  EXTRA CREDIT!! Start thinking about Fall now to0- here is the question I use when thinking to the season ahead.. how do I want to feel? What are my values and priorities for my family and life this fall; what needs to go and what can stay? I often put reminders in my calendar for the year ahead so that I can remember what last year felt like and if I need to make any changes.
  2. What makes mama happy?  What do YOU need in your daily life to help you feel good? Hint- my list includes essential oils, candles,  WATER, and a journal. As long as I have these things around me I know I can drop into my body and breathe deeply and support myself when tough things come up or when I want to experience a bit more joy and awareness in my daily life.  So since I’m leaving for a while I have a bag of my goodies all packed up and ready to take with me. This year I am bringing my twinkle lights so that I can set up a little meditation space at my grandmother’s house to sit this summer.  This will allow me to feel cozy and like home.
  3. HYDRATE. I know, I know- this is so simple. BUT if you REALLY, TRULY got enough water so many things would flow better in your body and in your life. Most of us are de-hydrated which leaves us feeling BLAH (low energy, bad skin, slow digestion, and feeling stagnant in our lives, etc).  In fact, we also know (research says!) that we tend to make poor decisions in other areas of our health when we don’t drink enough water (multiple cups of coffee, anyone?).  So for the summer I am committing to making sure I drink enough water while I am away.  I find it SO MUCH easier at home where I just refill all day!   I bought a new great water bottle at a discount store that will do well in the summer sun during my travels.  I don’t like to use plastic water bottles and just realized we have so many from Spring events! I don’t want to use plastic when the car gets hot, etc).

 

PS. Here is a call link for this topic— taking care of yourself this summer! I share all my best tips and practices. Listen and enjoy! Oh and come back to it when you need a reminder this summer.

PPS. REGISTER TODAY for THRIVE- the online wellness course that will SUPPORT YOU ALL SUMMER so you can truly be awake and engaged in your life. Registration ends FRIDAY!

Give & Recieve

“With a boundless heart
Should one cherish all living beings:
Radiating kindness over the entire world,
Spreading upwards to the skies,
And downwards to the depth.”

Something magical happened last week.  After years and years of complications, misunderstandings, hurt feelings and pain.. we have come to a place of relationship. Let me explain…

A few years ago, I had “forgiven” my mother. Enough to have a weekly call with lots of boundaries. Same time, same day each week. We would check in on the weather, the kids  and then hang up. On the outside it appeared that we had a relationship. As this became our norm, she began to open up a bit more. I would respond always at least an arms distance away. I was terrified of being hurt, of the past repeating, of opening my heart. So, I kept her at a very comfortable distance. That worked well for me, for a long time. I lived in neutral about it all. I did not ACTUALLY trust her with any of my thoughts, plans or life.

Until, in this past year we have had 2 in person visits.

Our December visit was quite incredible on a number of levels which I wont get into today but let’s just say we had a real connection. We had a powerful shared experience and we were able to spend some quality time alone where my guard came down. For the first time in years, I thought to myself ” I just need to talk to my mom.”  And there she was, supporting me and helping me get through an emotionally challenging situation.

Since this experience, we have been talking more frequently with less boundaries and just developing more of a relationship that we have been able to have, than I was able to have.

And then, last week- on one of our talks, I told her something I was working on for a project and told her a problem I was facing, a challenge I was contemplating and you know what? She gave me AWESOME advice. And then, my heart filled. THIS. IS. A. RELATIONSHIP.

The thing I had been pushing away, had not been ready for. After all the work we BOTH have done, we were able to come to a place where there was exchange, there was give and take. I am so proud of us both.

In order to be in a healthy, meaningful relationship there needs to be an energy exchange.

Over the past few months, I have learned the value of giving and receiving.

May this teaching penetrate all areas of my life.

(Especially  in ways I have yet to explore…and I wish this the same for you!)

Are there relationships in your life that you need to put some energy into or take some out of?

I KNOW this is a tough question- but email me if you want to share your story. info@lilomm.com

love to hear from you.

“Forgiveness does not gloss over what has happened in a superficial way. The practice is not about planting a smile on our face and saying, “It’s okay. I don’t mind.” It’s not a misguided effort to suppress our pain or to ignore it. If you’ve suffered a great injustice, coming to forgiveness may include a long process of grief and outrage and sadness and loss and pain. Forgiveness is a deep process, which is repeated over and over and over again in our hearts. It honors the grief and it honors the betrayal. And in its own time, it ripens into the freedom to truly forgive. And if we look honestly at our own lives, we can see the sorrows and pain that have led to our own wrongdoing. We’re not just victims; sometimes we also need to be forgiven. And in this way we can finally extend forgiveness to ourselves and hold the pain that we have caused in the heart of compassion. ”

This article was incredibly helpful to me.

 

 

 

so….. what’s next?

well, just a short 4 days after handing over the keys to our studio… I can feel the question sinking in. all this week people have asked me… “SO, What’s next for you? What will you do with your time?”  and I know they are trying to be loving and supportive and they are curious!  However,  I have spent the last 18 months diving into a shedding-letting go-less is more mindset… which means, it’s  really hard for me to answer this. Because in the past, I always had a next. 

and now..

nothing. I have no BIG plans, no crazy new projects, no big pivot or shift. I will keep doing what I do. A little teaching, some writing, lots of inquiry and reading and creating… but no, nothing really new. 

I am not necessarily “doing less” day to day but I most certainly dont have the same kinds of communications coming at me. the texts, the emails, the calls have slowed down a bit. The constant need to revamp an offering, change a price, go over class numbers, meet with marketing and scheduling and the bookeeper.. it has all been toned down with our biz restructuring. 

suddenly there are hours where I am not by or on my phone and I dont have fear when I do turn it on- that SOMETHING will have happened at the studio that needs my attention. I have a thing about responsibility and integrity and answering calls and texts in a timely manner and it was getting to me. I was letting it take over. 

to have more presence in my daily life AND do work I love feels truly like  “the privilege of a lifetime.”   

   -Joseph Campbell  

I am aware that in the past my responsibilities, commitments and creations tend to be rather large and rather public and intense.  So, as I gracefully enter into the next chapter post-studio with possibility, strength and confidence… I am curious to see how it will unfold and how the dance of ambition,  motivation and energy that are strongly in my nature will appear into my new normal of early bed times,  guilt -free self care, and a desire to serve and learn and teach as my own spirtual journey continues to deepen and flourish and evolve.

“so.. what do you do all day?” someone asked me this week. 

3 days a week I teach privately for half a day and then get 1-2 hours for admin work for the lil omm classes, marketing, financials, etc

Sprinkled around the rest of the week,  I teach a babies class, a preschool class, an elementary school class and Yoga for Women.

Honestly, each day is a combination of teaching people and classes and biz development, personal development, writing and mothering. In the next few months I will finish my e-book & probably offer some health coaching privates and groups/retreats in parternship with other workshops I want to lead and create. 

I have a full plate.

2 things I am proud of…

1. saying NO to a number of opps that came in my inbox this month… just clearly stating- I am not able to commit at this time. The truth is MY PLATE IS FULL. I am the home/caregiver and my children need me now more than ever. 

2. financially, I made more this month than I did the last 2 quarters I ran the studio. I think this is really, really impt to share in order to cultivate a healthy honest financial perspective& relationship … this topic is so incredibly silent in the the yoga world and I KNOW why . I KNOW many of us would teach for free if we could but…. I bring this up – bc I am proud to contribute to our family, pay our biz bills and to start the conversation around worth, money, value, yoga and biz.

What is so interesting to me is that when I was running the studio.. it never felt like enough, and even once we reached our goals- we raised them. There were always studio or techonology or staffing upgrades to be made… BUT  there was something SO out of alignment for me about this practice of NEVER ENOUGH.  and now, that its just me, I can set a monthly target, make a work plan, achieve my own personal “enough” and get on with living my life  (not working my life) . I can live in alignment with my values, as I set and determine them, without the more!more!more whisper. 

As I continue on this journey, I am amazed at how this world keeps expanding. I want to keep living in “open awareness” to see what is possible for me, as we have no idea what is around the corner. A great teacher, Karen Maezen Miller once told me , “you dont have to be amazing.”  And so now, I sit with that. Just moving back- letting other people take over, do the job, say yes, show up, run the show. 

and enjoy my life, no matter what happens next. 

 

    

   

Bye Bob.

I am sitting here in my car emotional about the goodbye.

For years this guy has been with me. Walked all over DC. Carried my babies. Held my groceries. Brought me home and traveled with us. 

Goodbye BOB! You served us so well. You gave me the FREEDOM I needed as a mama when I did not have childcare and was dying to move my body.

I am sitting here thinking of all the places we went together- the laughs- the tears- the beautiful new mama talks I had on the phone with countless friends while my babies slept.  And all the miles I put into Stroller Strides loving the women I met. 

first, with saylor. then, with milo. 

the times they screamed for no reason, and I sang to soothe them. the lonely hours I pondered life- wondering what this motherhood thing was about while I walked to Dupont and Georgetown or Palisades or Bethesda. just walking helped everyone feel better. 

One time, when Saylor was a baby- we were running to a class I was teaching- and we got a flat tire. I remember it was summer and so hot and I figured out a way to fix the tire long enough to get us to class to teach! I was so proud of myself for fixing that tire!! while she just cooed and eventually fell asleep.

and a few years later,  I had tiny tiny milo in the baby carrier and saylor in the stroller and I was so frustrated and bored and lonely at home with them that afternoon. I thought it would be great to go in the woods….on a wooded, branchy sort of trail. with no path. I cried. they cried. we got lost, I had to pee and hours later we made it home, somehow. it was ROUGH.

And now the day has come to say goodbye. You were so well loved- and this mamas heart feels the change that a new stage brings. 
when all the babies are not babies. when you dont need a jogging stroller for exercise, community, life support- when you grow out of   pushing babies and into doing homework and big kid stuff.

it was a blessed ride.

sweetness of it all- the duality of love-love-love and loss-loss-loss.

*fyi I know its crazy to write a blog post about a stroller. I also cant believe how incredibly emotional I am as I watch this mama push the stroller away from our home.

♥️

being here

when I was a little girl, I could walk to this beach from my grandparents house. I was lonely. It was usually empty. I would wander around the dunes dreaming of my future and wishing I had siblings. My family let me be free when we went to Nantucket- I spent a lot of time alone.  I would bike here or walk and make up stories, talk to myself… 

Today, when most of my family left the island… I headed right to my spot. I told the kids you dont have to get out of the car, its up to you. ” mom, its cold! its windy!” Its always windy here, you guys…. and then THIS.

They ran and played – we climbed and sang and jumped and got very,very dirty. 

Returning to my sacred places from childhood with these 2 is quite surreal. 

Now we have a few days that will be much quieter. which I know will bring more

magic, how could it not?  

                    

dancing my way towards 40.

No, I’m not turning 40, YET.( I can’t wait!)
But today, I’m 37.
I love it….. getting older & stronger & yet, more relaxed.

I was listening to a podcast where Amanda Palmer said she “lives with abundance and trust rather than scarcity and fear.” And I thought, yeah- that’s what I’m moving towards. That’s it.

The incredible people I get to be in relationship with, who make me laugh & send over notes, who hold my hand and give me a hug and who show unwavering support, no matter the crazy idea. And to the people in our community whom I get the pleasure of sharing yoga with- and who want to learn & go deeper, ask questions & who reach out for help, I love you.

This year, I stand proud knowing that my life does have a mission, a purpose and a depth that I always wanted and I always craved.

I’m here to help build community, support and encourage others around me to do the same in ways that feel meaningful and authentic to them.
I’m here to create a a space in which people are seen, heard & acknowledged, and to nurture a multi- generational community of love and of acceptance.

This year,
I’m learning not to be afraid of my strength or my softness,
not to be afraid of what may come; whether a blessing or a tragedy.

What if this is my last year, day, moment?
I know nothing is guaranteed except that there is an end.
And that, my friends, is motivation enough for me.
The reality that there is no promise of tomorrow.
No promise of next time, no definitive “see you soon”, it is all so precious. And I get it.

37 years ago tonight, I wonder what they were like.
How they felt, what they talked about, what supports they had, what fears did they have?
A 19 year old jewish boy from CT & a 21 year old young woman from Springfield, IL, had a baby.
They were not married, they were not “financially secure”, they were young. I don’t think the families approved. And here I was.
I don’t know the whole truth of those times in Olympia, Washington where I was born.
But I’m pretty sure it wasn’t easy.
And I now know, that being a new parent has so many ups and downs.
I can’t even imagine what it was like for them.

I have never thought about what they were going through in order to take care of me or how being a parent may or may not have changed them, right there, in those early days. What were they like? Did they call friends/family and ask for help? Did they cry over coffee and wine and talk about how hard it was on the relationship, on their lives? Was it hard? I’m trying to relate to them as I do with other new parents in the DC area- and it’s just a different world. My parents did not stay together long- and I have no memories of us ever being a family.

I don’t think my parents were talking about trusting the Universe or listening to the Divine.. not the way I do now. But I know that they somehow found their way, and so did I. These days, social media brings all of this attention to your birthday – everyone knows! In some ways, what a gift! To hear from long lost friends, to see kind things written about you, to feel loved. And in other ways, for me, this day is a celebration of LIFE!
Of cherishing the memories I have been so blessed to have, to remember all the smiles, laughs, good times that I shared with people in my life, who contact me TODAY!. AND honoring the harder ones to, the birthdays were I was alone, scared, angry, AFRAID of living- of pain, of loving too much, of being embarrassed or being seen. The birthdays I spent being selfish and greedy and controlling… the ones where I always wanted more.

Today was simple. Today was sweet. (until Milo had 3 afternoon tantrums!) But I also experienced another layer of healing, b/c I’m learning to trust the story, to hold in my heart those young parents who had a baby girl with no manual in hand, and to send them love in a whole new way. To let go of the issues of my past and to move courageously into the future without a plan. To trust that the life I am leading, that we ALL are leading today, is the way it is to be. And that even when we THINK we are controlling, planning, scheduling, reminding, busily buzzing along with our packed agendas and our self important calendars – that we are all just brothers and sisters here, together for a short time. That the only thing we leave with is our memories of experiences and the quality of our relationships.

In many ways, just a normal day, passings and exchanges.
Meaningless greetings & comments about the weather,
full of the commonality of daily life, that inherently is a privilege.

but to me, it’s more.

A BIG thank you to the Universe for leading me here, for sending me home, for giving me the gift of forgiveness and love, for showing me that generosity can win, that heart matters and to trust in the mystery. I belong here, and so do you. IMG_6500

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