My son eats cheese puffs and I’m a yogi mom. He also drinks those red sports drinks with that horrible red dye in it. I know, I’m a yogi mom! Shouldn’t I be putting stevia in my organic apple cider vinegar concoction and have him drink that for pleasure AND nourishment? I mean really, I drink it (without stevia) daily, so why can’t he?! I go on and on about my MSG in cheese puffs tirade, and the dye and exorbitant amounts of processed sugar in the sports drinks with my reactive (freaking out in love of course) discussions about how it causes hyperactivity, cancer, allergies, toxins in the mind and body, and needing to nourish the body. My son says “MSG what? I just want my cheese puffs, Mom, please.” On the other hand he eats organic vegetarian vitamins every day and takes his daily tablespoon of flax oil. I mean seriously, I breastfed my kid until he was almost two, he’s got some pretty good mojo going on inside his body already. He loves raw veggies and fruit, organic blue chips, raw nuts, and peppermint tea, but he loves his bacon, his cheese puffs, and his red sports drinks.
And, so it is, he is a separate being from me and he’s 8, which by today’s standards means he’s like a 1950s teenager. He can make his own choices (mostly) with yogi mom being his guide. So I buy organic hormone free bacon and I cook it for him, but I’m a vegetarian yogi and I don’t eat meat. Dinner conversations abound with our days stories and things like “Do you ever think you will eat like, mom?”, to which my kiddo half grins while eating his crunchy organic bacon says slyly “maybe.” And then I talk about why I eat the way I do and tell him he is making his own decisions based on the information I give him as his guide. That’s all a yogi mom can do, right? He’s willingly on a few occasions tried my tofu variations to no avail. So, I think his heart is in the right spot. It will take some time for him to come to terms with his reality on his own journey. That’s what yogis do, right? We live by certain ethical and moral principles and we guide others to do the same. There’s no forcing involved, only a loving and compassionate discourse and deliverance.
So our grocery store trips are always filled with me – yogi mom – teaching him about marketing and advertisements and how they whet our appetites even though we don’t need or want the product. The yogurts with the fun colors and characters on the box are so much cooler than the pastels on the organic yogurts. The conversation usually goes like this “you really don’t want that, you are just interested in the packaging, you really like the organic yogurts, I buy them all the time.” His response, “ok, nevermind, I don’t want the yogurt anyway.” I bend and say ok to the bacon, the cheese puffs, and the red sports drinks, but I have my limits! I won’t bend for the yogurt sugar clowns too! So, at the end of the grocery trip, he’s Bacon Little and I’m Tea Love, and together we are quite the son/mom partnership. He reminds me to allow him the room to grow into himself on his own and I am reminded that I’m a guide, I show him the lighted ways into the depths of his heart. From there, the rest is history – Bacon Little and Tea Love it is.
Then there’s shopping and communicating, and just living. How does a yogi mom infuse her Bacon Little son with these big ideals in just a day? Well, here’s a typical day in our world.
Breakfast requests range from organic waffles and sausage to organic peanut butter honey toast with almond milk to chocolate pebble crunch. Occasionally, Bacon Little may partake in my delightfully crafted banana peanut butter chia powder smoothie and remark “Yummy, Mom. Can you fix this for breakfast tomorrow?” And of course I’m elated with such flaxy oil lubrication I can’t seem to get a handle on where my budding yogi will be in terms of his thoughts and decisions by the time the end of the day arrives.
As snack time rolls around post school or summer day camp, the requests become symphony worthy “Cheese Puffs! Cheese Puffs! Cheeessseee Puuuuffsss!” So, on with our day. Kane occasionally calls me “weird mom” especially if I remind him to put his peace lenses on. Oh yes, the embarrassment abounds with anything mom and yoga around drop off at school or camp. As I explain to Bacon Little, peace lenses are important as we tell our children have a good day and remind them to put on their peace lenses so everything they think, say and do is filtered through the center of the purity of light and love.
Remember John Travolta in Pulp Fiction? Well, think of putting on your peace lenses across the eyes pulp fiction style. Yogi moms must bring in some funniness to keep it real, real fun sometimes.
Of course Bacon Little is reminded daily of his awesomesauace light and love because I, Tea Love, posted affirmations in his bathroom telling him so after one night of a very tough breakdown. He likes them, I like them, and so we adopted them as permanent fixtures in his bathroom.
Then there’s the cultural TV battle. I personally haven’t watched TV in over 15 years and raised my son that way though I was and still am a fan of family movies. Bacon Little can watch his movies/shows via Netflix on weekends during the school year and after day camp in the summer, with a timer of course!
When that timer ends, the next cultural battle begins. He sees Tea Love texting, emailing and catching up on social media on her iPhone so he too feels since we are partners, he can have access to his iPod. Ah, deep sigh. Bacon Little plays games, but that’s my limit. We have no more gaming systems. Screen time is limited and usually occurs when he goes with me to yoga class – the irony right?! Well, he doesn’t play in class, but he waits for Tea Love while she teaches. A single mom has to do what a single mom has to do to spread light and love. And my heart smiles bright on the occasion I say “we’re working on handstands today!” and he takes my class only to say “I kinda like your class, Mom!”
When dinner rolls around, he eats his vegetarian lentils and raw carrots with no fuss and loves it. We talk about our day and other times he parrots me pleading that we have quiet time as he’s “thinking” and just needs silence. Big sigh – what’s not to love about that?! And to teach gratitude, we always say our blessings at dinner and we alternate. Nothing is scripted, just whatever the source is directing us to say in the moment as we find we are always grateful for something no matter what’s going on in our lives.
He’s a great helper with chores too. I’m always reminding him the value of hard work especially as light and love torch carriers. I love to say “help me, help you, help us.” And without him knowing the yogi speak, we’re learning about interconnection and appreciation.
If the day was really bad, then we sit on our right listening cushions, make eye contact and have one to one time. Or, instead, if our imperfectly perfect selves happen to throw thunderbolts (aka angry words) at each other we love to “start over”, like tabula rasa or blank slate, after one of us recognizes that we didn’t regulate our emotional arousal really well. It’s all about teaching him how to regulate our emotional arousal, and when we don’t do our best, we apologize and start over connecting even stronger to our highest Self.
At bed time, after Bacon Little brushes his teeth and we must floss of course to keep the bacon fat from reaching his brain in order to keep it as clear and clean as possible because saucha or purity (one of those yogi principles again) is all about cleanliness/purity on the inside and out. That’s what I’ve been teaching all day anyway, but does he get it yet?!
So, we made it to the end of the day and about this time we may decide to write an impromptu song together or read a mythical story so we keep our creative juices alive.
And then Tea Love, takes her cup of tea after many kisses and hugs at bedtime and reflects. In the end, yogi mom gets a big sigh of relief when she walks into her bedroom and sees that Bacon Little left her a note and flower, yes a note AND a flower telling her, “Dear Mom: I have a lot of things on my mind and I’m sorry for not acting my best, I love you so much, and you are the best mom ever.”
Well, you can imagine that Tea Love cried her blissed heart out. She continued to be flooded with other memories like when Bacon Little holds her hand in the movie theater while she is crying incessantly at Spider Man 3 and he asked with sincerity if she was ok, or the many adventures they take together exploring themselves and all around in the moment and Bacon Little stops to pick a flower for her hair or find a special rock that he knows Tea Love, well, would absolutely love.
As Tea Love continued to reflect upon this yoginess in her life and her son’s life, she still kind of wondered if the bacon and red sports drinks have destroyed his insides yet, and then she’s reminded of the written piece Bacon Little brought home from school entitled What is love? –
Love is a gift from God. Love is your heart. Love is special. Love is you. Love is nature. Love is amazing. Love is family. Love is a hug. Love is cool.
So it is in these moments Tea Love really understands how she is in fact modeling all that yogi stuff to Bacon Little and it’s working! And after some grumbling, Tea Love continued to contemplate all these things and decided if Bacon Little wants bacon and cheese puffs instead of raw veggie bliss sometimes, but just sometimes, well then why not. She is ok with that.
Tea Love realizes that Bacon Little is his own being. He’s got to find his own dance, his own balance, his own inner guide. Besides, Tea Love realized her most important job was not to control, but to guide Bacon Little and give him all the yogi tools possible so he can make those choices on his own from the inside out.
Tea Love learned what many yogi moms and all moms in general learn after much tension – that we are guides. The greatest gift we can give our children are the tools to find the greatest guide, which is within all of us – divine love. Everything else, including the chemical fraught red sports drinks and MSG cheese puffs seems to be shaking out in vibrational bliss in due time.
Bacon Little and Tea Love – it’s a divine partnership of yoga light and love in motion, where student changes to teacher and teacher changes to student without recognition sometimes, and they take all the bumps and bruises, and sail smoothly across the rocky mountains of divine love.
Om Shanti Om ~ Athea