Tag Archives: children

Beebi ja emme jooga tunnid 2013 sügisel

 “By construction, the fulfillment of a woman is motherhood; and motherhood does not mean that she gets pregnant and delivers a baby. If you understand her total behavior, you will understand her motherhood. Her motherhood is service, her motherhood is sacrifice, her motherhood is relationship. When she knows motherhood, she is fulfilled.” – Yogi Bhajan

Värskele emadele on võimalik tulla koos oma lapsega joogatamas. Sellel sügisel alustame 14. november, kokku 5 tundi, neljapäeviti kl 10-11.
See on väga ülendav kogemus lapsele ning emadele suurepärane võimalus oma kodune rutiinist välja tulla ja olla teiste emade seas, kellel on samad küsimused ja mured kui sinulgi ning tuleme üheskoos et omavahel toetada ning tõsta oma vibratsioonid et meil oleks beebidele ja perele jaksu.

Rohkem infot Beebi ja emme jooga tundide kohta SIIT
 

The cleaning lady from my kindergarten

Today I am sharing a personal childhood memory. I’m doing this because it is very vivid, since I have experienced the same through Theo and other children at the daycare center.

Lets go back to Mexico in the 1980s.
Kindergarten. A very beautiful blue building, two actually, surrounding a big playground which had two carrousels, animals you could climb, lots of slides, rings, even a pool. Dreamland. Lots of children who were very happy. And I remember the fence. That metal fence where mama would walk out and sit in the car for hours peeking if I was ok. I don’t remember much of inside of the buildings because I was probably very rarely there. I cried all the time. I didn’t want to go there. I wanted mami. I cried so much, teachers couldn’t take care of me while holding the group. So a very kind lady, the cleaning lady, would spend the mornings holding me and riding the carrousel. I remember her kindness, her compassion, and I don’t remember any of the other teachers, nor much other than that putter playground.
The kindergarten itself was very posh and on the edge of new technologies. That was on the early 80s. I do remember the English classroom. It was on the farther building, on the first floor. There were these big headphones hanging from the ceiling, ones over each chair, and children would put those and listen to (a tape?) the English lessons. It was scary to say the least. But it was high end technology.
Back to the playground. The carrousel. The kind cleaning lady. My sadness, I missed my mami. And she was heartbroken herself she left me there. And I was not a small child, I must have been 4 or 5 years old.
I must say though that my mother was the most caring and loving person I could have asked for. She never left us alone. She was practicing mostly attachment parenting without that term even existing back then. She left her professional life, her whole career behind to stay home with us kids. No blame or guilt intended here whatsoever.

Fast forward to 2013, and my feelings come alive when we are trying out a daycare center with Theo. I stayed with him all morning (we were there for two hours actually), and all this time a little boy, about 2.5 years old, was crying for his mommy. My heart went out to him. Of course, the care takers were in a hard situation, having to deal with him and at the same time take care of all children. And having parents around. The poor boy kept crying until we left, and we left early mostly because my nervous system was so tired from hearing that boy cry. We came home and I slept so deep rejuvenating sleep I needed to heal that inside me.
All te time I felt like reaching out for that boy. Of course he didn’t want that, he wanted mommy. (And I didn’t try, who knows who might feel I’m exceeding the boundaries by hugging a boy). He was clinging into one caretaker, but mostly she was urging him to play or ignoring his cries. And all the other children were looking at him now and then. It was pretty intense.
As a mother, maybe I am too sensitive. Because of how I am, probably influenced also by the fact that I lost my first child. I am extremely compassionate and in any situation I feel the impulse to reach out to those in need.
So I was holding myself today. It was, after all, not my issue. But I did reflect on the fact of how that whole situation is affecting the psyche of that child, the other children, the caretakers and all. It felt to me that that boy, same as me 30 years ago, was not ready to take that step. At the same time, my heart goes to the mother, who was probably in a situation that had to put her child there. And to the caretakers, in such a difficult task.
I do believe strongly that I can express all what I feel. I felt that child’s feelings being neglected, everybody pretending he was not in a deep state of grief. And I don’t want my child to learn such rudeness. Also a little more love from the caretakers could have changed the whole situation. Of a lot more love, which was what the boy needed. A group hug, having all the other children acknowledge what was going on instead of ignoring it, having all children sing to him so he could heal. I thought of making those suggestions but felt it was not my place, as I’m an observer. (Probably I should have). I feel we need a lot more kindness, understanding, reaching out to others in this world. Love, treating others as they are worth, as respected human beings, evermore when they are desperately crying it out for help. They communicate, but we ignore it. They learn that speaking out is useless. So they submit, learn to ignore their emotions, dig them down deep and keep them for themselves. And yes, at some point that child will give up his cries, and prove that we won the battle, but aren’t we the ones who must give up our ideas of how a child must behave? Of how much love or kindness he needs? Aren’t we te ones who are not understanding the signals, when he uses all his might to communicate as a complete human being worth of being listened to? Aren’t we the ones who should stop pretending to ignore and deal creatively and lovingly with every challenging situation?
Instead of telling him “don’t cry, mama will come” (and him waiting for mama for one second, and asking again- *small children don’t have the sense if time as adults do), showing him lovingly “yes, mama is not here, it is very sad, but we are all here for you!”. Maybe it doesn’t work and I’m just stupid, but trying it (for 100 times, not less) doesn’t hurt anyone. In fact it may teach the other children to reach out. And make the day lighter and brighter for everyone.

At the end I listened to my intuition (after all, I am teaching about intuition right!) and have had such a wonderful time together with Theo with no need of daycare or playrooms. At this age, what a child most needs is attention from the close circle (mother and father) and yes, occasionally a babysitter or another playmate who has a fully loaded battery. (That is, beside other kids of course)

Blessings and kindness to every soul,
Sukhdev Kaur

Harmonious Communication

Sat nam dear friends,

This year I have been very profoundly examinating my own communication, trying to get rid of any violence in it, any demands, any disharmony which is present in my words. I do find that communication is one of the most important ways of how we can impact others, touch them with the wind of compassion, and elevate ourselves and others. Here is 5 simple (yet deep) rules of how to improve your communication:

Yogi Bhajan’s rules of harmonious communication.

  1. You are communicating for a better tomorrow, not to spoil today.
  2. Whatever you are going to say is going to live forever. And you have to live through it. Therefore, take care so you don’t have to live through the mud of your own communication.
  3. One wrong word said can do much more wrong than you can even imagine or estimate.
  4. Words spoken are a chance for communication. Don’t turn them into war.
  5. When you communicate, you have to communicate again. Don’t make the road rough.

-From the book The Aquarian Teacher. Teacher Training in Kundalini yoga by Yogi Bhajan.

Now I realise, I may have posted this before. Nevertheless, it will never lose its importance!

Blessings and a harmonious communication to all!

-Sukhdev K

 

Non attachment

It’s 3 am. Theo is 1.5 years old. Technically you could say he is ready to sleep through the night. Practically you could say he needs to be reassured of my presence during the night. I just spent about an hour trying to get him back to sleep. And unlike many other nights, I’m perfectly calm.
Is he waking up because he wants to bother me? Is he a sleepless rebel? Is he complotting against my sleep? Is he being spoiled? Should I be sleep training (or using some kind of no cry method to help him sleep through?
My answer to all this is clear: no.
As an intuitive mother I focus first on his well being. Not only physical (“his body needs full rest”) but also mental and spiritual. He needs to be treated with respect and loving kindness even in those wee hours of the night, when I and my mind are at our weakest point. Very easily this could all turn into a drama: I lose my patience and he will cry. That is all pointless because he will then be wide awake for the next couple of hours. Or I will just need to put more effort into getting him to calm down. But sometimes that’s what needs to happen.
In moments like this, I have learnt to become non attached. Being different from de-tachment, non-attachment implies having no expectations whatsoever. He might wake up, or fall asleep, or I may need to carry him around. There is no other purpose of my actions except being there for him, and contain him. I don’t just expect him to fall asleep because the fact that I want him to fall asleep. I’m open to being sensitive and responsive to him, whatever the outcome is.

“I love you because I love myself”. I am within me, centered, therefore I can be non attached to the action. And I am within me, centered, thus I am patience myself, cannot run out of it. I am within me, centered, therefore I can contain you, and to beyond human boundaries to provide you with heavenly values and qualities.

That is my focus, during these wee hours, that keeps me from losing it. A deeper meaning than just “get to sleep!” despair.

Because I love you and I love myself, and I owe this to both of us.

In gratitude for every challenge as an open door to the unknown,
Sukhdev Kaur

Now to sleep, because This is my chance!

Parent’s ongoing tests

This post is mostly a reminder to myself, that I share with you all as it may be of help. I’m on holidays with my family visiting my sister and her family, and Theo seems to be uninterested to see more than our rented house. He’s been I’ll for half of the trip and now that he got well, his mood swings remind me of teething times since he only wants to be in my arms and carried, otherwise he cries (he also does it all the time in my arms though). I came to understand again that it is transitions that make him anxious, all transitions (night-day, awake-asleep, inside-outside, eating-playing, mama-papa)

So..

Children will repeatedly test your resistance, patience, love-ability and compassion. All moments when you think “I can’t handle this anymore” they will challenge you for more. The test is to lose all hope, not to become hopeless but to stop hoping and wishing and dreaming and come back to the present. That is where life with children is lived, one day at a time, one moment, whether precious or challenging, you decide the outcome. It’s all about how strong your nervous system is -not to ignore all cries!- but to be strong enough so you keep yourself anchored and centered through all cries. Because that’s the only way to help a child in whatever need they might have. Stay centered and focused. Remain you. Do not go into the mind’s game. Stay and breathe. Be you. Do not collapse, explode, burn or melt. You are his anchor, you must remain anchored. Keep up. Sa ta na ma.

(I’ll probably take some words from this and put them up the wall back at home)

Blessings from Canada
Sukhdev Kaur

Conscious Parenting workshops in Estonia and France

Dear Family,

I am happy to announce that my long-planned project and wishes of teaching Conscious Parenting have started to crystallize. Together with my dear colleague, mother and kundalini yoga teacher trainer, Bachitar Kaur from Germany (living in the Netherlands), we have set up a series of workshops to start the project running. All information is found from our joint website on Conscious Parenting: http://www.consciousparenting.eu/

The first one of these workshops is this weekend here in Estonia, at the Haapsalu Yoga Festival. The workshop will be held in English and translated into Estonian. We will see what parenting is from the yogic perspective and I will guide through a meditation to connect with this life flow as parents. Full description of this workshop and the Haapsalu Yoga Festival you can find here:
http://www.joogafestival.ee/en/program/tootoad/tootuba-kuidas-olla-teadlik-lapsevanem/

The second, longer workshop will take place at the European Yoga Festival in Fondjouan, France. This we will teach together Bachitar Kaur and me, and we welcome all friends from all over Europe (and beyond!) to join us. It will be an experience of parents together uplifting our experience as teachers for our children. For more information go here:
http://www.3ho-kundalini-yoga.eu/en/eventsactivities/european-yoga-festival/festival-program/workshop-schedule2012/bachitar-kaur-sukhdev-kaur-netherlands-estonia/

Im looking forward to seeing you all and sharing experiences and the teachings with all of you!
In gratitude to the divine,
Sukhdev Kaur

Your child wants you to be present

Sat nam dear family,
I have been lately so concerned on getting Theo to sleep well, trying to analyse different methods for baby sleep (cry it out, no-cry sleep solution, all kinds of advice..) without really feeling that any of these is the one that works for us (didnt even feel like trying out any). It has been really hard to get him to sleep lately, taking over an hour and he’s whining, eventually crying…
Today I found the key. 
He is sound asleep after 20 minutes of pure pleasure.
What I did?
I breathed differently, and it all changed. I didnt feel anymore like I wanted to escape from there, I was present with Theo and enjoyed putting him to sleep, and I was there voluntarily instead of feeling like dragged in to do it. And I felt intuitive and creative enough to make up a new fun sleep routine which we both enjoyed.  
This new routine was: go to bed, dim the lights, sing our lullaby (while continuing with the rest until he sleeps) change diapers, massage with lavender oil, put pijamas on, (allow him to be and move while doing all this, all this time I was consciously expanding and coming down into my grounds mentally and physically), breastfeed, after a while he didnt want to breastfeed anymore, sat up and played a little bit (and I allowed it calmly which was something I didnt do before, and it was great – he actually always sees and tries to reach the water bottle so I decided we “put the bottle to sleep” together), then I laid him on the bed and pat him from head down to his toes while singing for a good 3 minutes (not just 5 times… to let his energy down, and I saw him start to calm down), and breastfeed again, this time after a bit of kicking and moving around he settled down calmly and sound asleep after a few minutes.
It was all a combination of what I did physically and mostly what I did energetically. I changed my feeling of “wanting to be somewhere else” (having 10s other things to do waiting for me: emails, work, dinner…) into choosing to be in the moment with him and enjoy it. That was it. That was the golden key which I had been looking for! 
Your baby wants you to be present. All babies need physical contact and all are fighting to get it, thats why they wake up at night, want to be carried and held, play with you, sleep close to you. Since our minds are somewhere else, we are not fully present with our children they get our presence only partially, and they keep yearning for more. The moment you start giving (constantly) full presence, the less your baby will be needy for you and the less you will feel dragged into the parenthood and everyday duties. When we give only partial presence to our babies (and also to husband, even to ourselves!) they become needy, whiny and grumpy. We are actually teaching them that in life, you can only give partial attention and presence to others, so they start acting the same way. The challenge lies in accepting and living the full presence of oneself, which at the beginning can be scary (am I really that great and divine? can I really just be and not do-do-do all the time?), and as we start expanding that awareness more and more into every day, into each breath, the simpler all gets.
As easy as a baby sleeping (parents will recognise the paradox in this)
The breath that helped me was to inhale while expanding into myself (if visualizing my lungs and chest grow sideways, not vertically), and exhaling coming back inside (like a reverse fountain, downwards and into my core/ground, not exhaling my soul out and up away from my body). Hard the first few times, but I started to enjoy it more and more and Im sure this is something that will stick to me for the rest of my life.

The hardest practice is not to run away. Can you BE while doing all the things you do? Can you dedicate your life to being present, regardless of where, what or how you are? 
Such is my prayer that you and I live in constant applied awareness
In humble service,
Sukhdev K

Transformation at 02:54 hrs

Just when we started to sleep better (and that means waking only three or four times in the night) again comes a sleepless night… Oh my mind, yet another opportunity to surrender to the divinity in all. Ang Sang Wahe Guru

Today I drove my bike quickly to the shop and left the men at home. At first it was such a light feeling (weightless and free hands) and a sort of familiar sensation of freedom and naiveness came to me, as when I was single and doing whatever I wanted with my time. Suddenly that feeling of freedom became a boring emptiness, where life was pointless and lacked real depth. My lesson of that very ordinary trip to the shop was of valuing all the blessings I have been given. Without the pressures and challenges of motherhood, life was not as fun and deep. Gratitude. Gratitude. Gratitude. 24/7. That’s all that is needed.

Now the time is 03:02 and Theo is sound asleep in my arms, hopefully to remain for the rest of the night.

Stay tuned.

In humility,
Sukhdev Kaur

Few thoughts on parenting and legacy

It’s been a while since my last post here. The everyday life of a mother has sucked up all my time and energy, being in the moment and taking a break from overdoing too much other things. Today I really feel like writing. Theo recently turned 5 months old, and as I write this he is behind me sleeping soundly (beautifully and peacefully).

Many thoughts have been today going through my mind. Recently we bought Theo a new (and light!) stroller, which I must say is more of a comfort to me than bringing him happiness. He loves being carried and being in arms, as all small babies should. And today I went back to the rebozo (carrying sling). It was a good experience- one of those when I came back home sweaty, tired, in a bad mood. He was sound asleep and happy, but not much difference than those times with the stroller. To me it was. He has grown big and heavy, and the sling is not any more a first choice for long journeys in the city. For home use its great, but the time has gone when we were tied together 24-7. It was a small thing, but a strong realisation of how he is growing, and me giving in into al sorts of imagined ideas of how I want to raise him. I give up, my body just doesn’t allow for such perfectionism (my 9’s talking here).

I can see a difference those days when we use the stroller a lot. He becomes (the difference is subtle and slight) more isolated, slightly more irritable and needs more entertainment. Yet I realised today, that in spite of being aware of that, I just cannot physically give him 24-7 hours of body contact anymore. The long uncertain nights have given way to more routine and peaceful days and nights, which is such a relief for me as well. Also, he does not ask for the 24-7 carrying, and is happy playing alone for a while.

Life in this point is so full of moments of awareness. My own cells bring the traditions from my mexican ancestors, yet Theo also has qualities from these northern peoples. I can see both sides in his personality in development.

Another thought today caught my attention: What is the most important thing that I would like to give my child? That means, if I would be gone tomorrow, what would I like it to be my legacy to him (and the others yet to come)? It would need to be something bigger than me, a connection with the divine, an understanding of this play we are all in (maya), and the link to God through Guru. Thats it. The only thought, knowledge and experience of being part of the play of something bigger is what I want to give him- so he will not be dissapointed by the time when he realises that mama and papa are not perfect, or that his mates are also not perfect, or that even he is not perfect. The experience that he can always lean on Guru for answers, for hope, for uplifting and elevating himself and others. And of course, the core of the teachings that is, live for the other. No matter in how many problems or situations I might be stuck today, the sole thought of helping another makes it all senseless. Live for each other, said Yogiji. Thats it. It makes life easy, smooth, relaxing. And of course, gratitude for all.

I am grateful that my child came into my world by the time I have this depth in understanding. Thats probably what I was so afraid of when thinking of having children years ago. I was not consciously mature. But now I have these teachings to give him, and serving the sangat while doing so, is the most divine gift that god has given me. Obey, serve, love, excel. Humility, service, compassion and realisation. The teachings of Guruji, the way to live in this world to walk light and in light. If it was not for elevating others, there would be no purpose in this life at all. Serving humanity to the very last breath in this world. Sharing the technology, the teachings of consciousness. Being a bridge- serving others find the divine in themselves, that is the only thing why I came into this life, and that is what I want to give to my Theo. That is my teaching to him. All other is just icing.

Theo’s new discovery

Sat nam dear family

My son Theo will soon be three months old. Life has become completely different since he arrived, of course a lot more demanding and full of responsibilities, and blessed with new light and an opportunity for us to relive life and discover all it has to offer.

Today Theo has been immersed in the discovery of his hands. he spent all morning just looking – or I should say contemplating deeply – at them. He just held them on the air as long as he could and would look at one and the other. All the time both hands were in really tight fists and motionless. Just concentrated on the one thing of realising that those interesting tools were his own, and that he could move (and squeeze) at will. Thats I guess what a baby in deep meditation looks like.  He even did not want to be held, which is rare. 

As we get used to our hands, our bodies, manners and habits, we humans tend to forget how amazing the tools we have been given are. And such simple yet key realisations, like Theo today, are big steps in understanding our surroundings, ourselves, and life. May our days be filled with such illuminating moments throughout our lives, so we remain fresh, alive, healthy, learning and in love.

Reporting from the mother’s lap,

Sukhdev Kaur