Full Circle

There is a surprising thing about homeschooling that you may not believe:  the more time you spend with your kids, the easier and more enjoyable it is to spend time with your kids.

To people who say: 

"I couldn't homeschool. I just need a break from my kids!" 

I say: 

"Trrrruuussst me - I need a break, too."  

In our house, we spend some pretty focused time together in the morning.  By 1pm, we have been debating, reading, eating, whining, encouraging, crying and laughing for several hours together.  The kids don't want to see my face for a while. And....likewise.

One of the reasons this works, is because there is no principal's office to keep little Johnny if he throws his shoe at your head during the math lesson.  You can't say to the state officials, "Well, I had a really big headache that morning, so we just didn't cover long division." If Sally is going through a phase, you are the only person who can help her move through it.

It is the same with meditation and yoga.  The more time I spend with myself, the more I like who I am and the more I trust and enjoy the process.

Instead of your children as students, you are your own student and teacher.  You are accountable to yourself.  If your discipline is lacking, you will not progress as quickly.  

In both homeschooling and my personal spiritual journey, I have started to recognize and appreciate the rough, awkward situations that I have to face.  It makes me feel like I am watchful of my thoughts and actions.  

My Kundalini Yoga mentor, Nam Joti Kaur, warned us recently that we would should expect to face "our stuff" throughout our mentorship.  As a published author, blogger, and respected yogini, she chooses her words carefully.  This was no exception.  "Stuff" is the best way to describe those secret little/big parts of ourselves that we hide from the world.  Fear, embarrassment and so many other darker emotions tell us to hide it.

We are even afraid to name it sometimes, right?

I have a blog dedicated to naming that stuff already, but I'm guessing other "stuff" has taken its place when I wasn't aware.

One of my favorite readings in recent weeks was about yoga practitioners who stopped at the frame of each door they passed through to ask themselves, "Am I awake?"  This sounded useful to me.  When I started doing this, the release of tension in my core and the deep inhale that followed reminded me how easy it is to be lulled to sleep by routine.  We have to consciously choose to enlighten ourselves and stay awake.

In the last few weeks I have slowed down in my writing to reflect on how different I am from the person I was 2 years ago.  It was the understanding that there is nowhere to run from yourself that led me to start unpacking all the stuff I had been carefully hiding.  The neurotic habits I had, and the trapped feeling that suffocated me were actually a good thing.  They were my heart shouting out, "Hey!  There's a bunch of SHIT in here you need to deal with!"

So here's to looking at your junk and dealing with it.

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