It certainly has been a wild ride since the pandemic hit New York City. I am a Peloton Yoga and Meditation Instructor at Peloton and a mother to 3 young boys. My husband and I both have full time jobs and we have a wonderful nanny, Damarist, who helps us tremendously. I am beyond grateful for Damarist, she is like a part of our family. I relied heavily on her to keep my home life organized while I taught live classes for the Peloton community. I often had to leave for work as early as 6:00AM and return as late as 8:00PM.
I am a very hands-on mom. I always try to drop off and pick up my older son from school, and when I get home, I play with them all as much as possible. I love being with my darlings, but I also spend a lot of time away from them. My work often continues once I arrive home–I have class planning, emails, social media obligations, etc. to keep up with. I am really “stretched” in many directions to say the least.
Once COVID-19 hit, things changed. I was thrust into a situation of working from home and taking care of my three boys and a house to manage. I have to admit, I love being with them. I get to cherish all of the little moments that I missed when working away from home and I get to interact with them in new ways. But I also have to learn anew how to manage my time and emotions, under such circumstances and in such an environment. I truly miss Damarist in so many ways; and I appreciate her even more now.
There are moments when I feel like I could explode when they bicker and fight. I also get overwhelmed when at the same time, they all ask for my attention. I could be finally taking a shower and they’ll go out of their way to find me, to open a bag of fruit chews. My husband is super helpful; but it still seems like I do a majority of the housework, grocery shopping and cooking. He takes out the trash, helps homeschool our older son, deals with all the tech stuff, and loves the boys to death; he does what he can, but they are young and still in the mommy phase.
I feel that if I don’t keep things running smoothly, everything would be chaos. My one non-negotiable me time is exercise. Movement is medicine. If I don’t get my daily workout, yoga practice or meditation, I suffer mentally and physically. It was important to me to create a routine, and one that I could stick with. Once the boys are dressed, fed and playing or doing school work, they know that mom is going to ride the Peloton, roll out her mat, or lift some weights. If they want to join me when I’m practicing yoga or Pilates, that’s fine; but I have to take care of myself. They have gotten used to the fact that mom is going to do her movement; and I love setting a good example for them. The age old analogy of putting on your own oxygen mask first definitely rings true for me. If I don’t connect to my own breath and fuel my body with positive endorphins that come from a good workout, I won’t be very useful to anyone.
Movement and meditation are my anchors during these uncertain times. I have always been able to rely on the joy that comes from moving my body and taking care of my health. I eat well, get a good night’s rest and stick to a fairly regular routine. I feel more alert and ready for what the day has in store if I’ve gotten in a good sweat. I also find ways to sneak in brain breaks and exercise throughout the day. If I’m at my desk I’ll do some chair yoga. When the boys are antsy, we do down dogs or play ring around the rosy (trust me it’s good exercise!). I try to find as much balance as I can right now and not put too much pressure on myself or my children, and we continue to find the silver lining and look to the rainbow of hope that comes after the storm. I truly think this Mother’s Day will be my most meaningful ever. I have found a deeper connection to myself and to my children. I look forward to celebrating with them and getting a little pampering (maybe breakfast in bed before my workout) plus exercising on Sunday!
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