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Super-Mom of the Month

Super-Mom Betsy Parsons:

I expected motherhood to change me.  How could it not?  Everything was new.  But what I didn’t expect was that motherhood would strip me bare – drop me to rock bottom – force me to face that I had lost myself – demand that I pick up the shattered bits of me and piece myself back together.  It was all at once brutal and gratifying.  I am grateful for all of it.  I have learned who I am and how great my support system is.  I learned how absolutely wonderful my husband is, what a fantastic dad he is, and what a loving and supportive family surround us.  It’s not just me who is a super mom.  It’s my husband, my mom and dad, and my mother and father-in-law who make up this super family.  Each one of us plays an important role. Life is a tremendous gift, and we were all starkly reminded of that during the first six weeks of my daughter’s life. We almost lost her.  The first six weeks of her life were spent in the NICU.  She was a full term baby but a very sick one.  After she came home, every milestone was carefully watched.   She thrived.  And I almost missed it because I was worried about what could be wrong.  It was 9 months later when I started to splinter apart.  She was walking and I was cracking – emotions needed to be expressed.  I needed to feel again.  Not surprising, but I hadn’t been taking care of myself.  I was just trying to make it through a minute, then an hour, and a full day.  I wasn’t taking care of myself.  I wasn’t sleeping well.  I was sleepwalking.  I rationalized that all of this was well within a first-time mom response (ha!).   Eventually, I was diagnosed with PTSD and got help.  I began to piece myself back together.  It took another full year for me to hear the stirrings of my voice.  It’s been over two years, and just recently I realized that I am whole again.  I experienced such joy in finding myself.    I had really missed me!  But losing myself and finding an improved version had taken hold – makes me so grateful for the journey.  It has allowed me freedom to be myself, to slow down and enjoy the moments of motherhood, to rely on my family to play significant roles raising my daughter, to trust, and to embrace the unexpected.  It’s often what I need most!  I’m so thankful for my super family – including my husband who is embracing his role as stay-at-home dad!  Collectively, we’re a super team with a super daughter.

Super-Mom Kate Campbell:

Summer Break = Super mom ???

Hmmm… tough one, right? Not quite a break for Moms…

I have recently been inaugurated into the, ‘Best Life Ever’ World, of Taylor Wells; yet ,I am a long time believer in ‘deliberate creation’.

This is a great season to test the power~

As a single mother of four, triplet thirteen year old boys and a ten year old daughter, with a full time job, limited outside help, I wasn’t eligible to sign up for, ‘the lazy days of summer’.

Great opportunity to set my intention, of staying sane and somewhat productive!!

In my home office, trying to ignore the blasting t.v. and kids meaningless banter, I shift my thoughts to the ‘Graduation Party’ I attended, where my friends daughter is moving on, as well as the crying little baby next door, whose Mom is just beginning the journey.

Ok, Kate, grateful for where I am, don’t want to start over and not ready to let go..

Next…gratitude: lucky to have today with the kids…Especially the two with ‘Cerebral Palsy’, who require so much extra care.  The effort can be immense; but, the  rewards are priceless.(think Visa commercial)

Work/Life Balance: Where would we be if I didn’t have a job to support us? Really uncertain!

So dang lucky to have one, let alone really enjoy it..And, who am I kidding? On the beautiful days, when I relocate outside, sure beats the four walls of the corporate office!!

Summer: more time together. Can be annoying;  need to reframe. We have each other and can be together. More specifically, I can still care for ALL the kids, in the comfort of our home..perspective !

In Summary: not exactly sipping lemonade on the hammock, but, it’s going to be the ‘Best Summer Ever’.

Mantra: I can handle, these things and more~

 

Super-mom Kim Cherelli

 

WOW!! Supermom of the month.    I was shocked to say the least when Taylor mentioned she wanted me to be her super mom of the month.  Me?  I never thought there was anything super about me.  I’m as average as average is, nonetheless I was and am honored to be thought of.

 

I met Taylor a year ago during Teacher Training at Prana Power Yoga.  I was instantly drawn to her energy and knew I was in the right place.  I didn’t know why I decided to become a yoga instructor nor did I know what I was getting into.  You see prior to signing up for the 8 week teacher training I think I practiced yoga about a dozen times.  I woke up one day and said “ I think I’d like to be a yoga instructor”  I proceeded to ask my yoga instructor at BSC how one goes about becoming an instructor.  She told me about Prana and here I am a whole year later.  I wasn’t really sure what I was looking for other than the fact I was looking for “something” the something that yoga instructors have.  I’m learning every day and I’m a work in progress but this is a journey and I am excited to see where it takes me.  The teacher training was an emotional and beautiful experience.  As quickly as the thought popped into my head to become a yoga instructor the same happened for my understanding why.  I’m understanding I am where I am suppose to be right now at this moment.  Stress is not as prevalent as before and I’m understanding people a bit better.

 

So, a lil about me.  I’m a single mom of one 18 year old son.  I don’t consider myself any different than the next mother. I never found raising a child difficult because it came naturally to me. .  I raised him simply the way I wanted to be treated.  I always knew I wanted to be a mother. I was 24 when I found out I was pregnant and afraid to tell my mother.  I knew what she would say or better yet the look or her face would tell me how disappointed she was.  Most people know my situation and how my son was the result of an abusive relationship, however I wouldn’t have change a thing.  I had to go through that for my son to be born.  If I didn’t then he wouldn’t have been born and I can’t imagine my life without him.  People congratulate me for being a single mom  my son does too but I don’t think I deserve any special credit.  Putting aside all my heartache and struggles in my life, it’s nothing compared to what some are going through.  I do count my blessings and I feel blessed to have been given this gift of motherhood.  There are those who want children and can’t   I am so very thankful and I can’t say it enough…..It’s truly a blessing.

“where you are at this moment is where you are suppose to be”

Sending love and light to all

Kim Cherelli

 

“Every day is a great day, some days are better than others” my uncle said to me last week. Becoming a mother was one of those exceptionally “great” days. Iris’s first night I could hardly sleep.  My body buzzed with adrenaline. This joy carried me through the first few weeks.  I was surprised at my resilience, running on no sleep and little food.  I was like the energizer bunny; I just kept going and going, fueled by love for my sweet, soft, cuddly newborn.

Fast-forward 7 months and although the novelty of having a newborn has slightly dulled (we are very much into a routine at this point), I still find myself continuously amazed.  So, here we are on a Sunday night in January.  Iris has been sleeping since 7pm.  At around 10:00, I hear her stirring and crying.  When I enter her room I hear gurgling, sniffling and coughing.  It occurs to me that Iris might have her first cold (her father has had a cold for a week at this point and it seemed inevitable that she caught it).  I nurse her and rock her but she is still upset, which is rare (she is normally a very happy baby).  So, I decide to bring her downstairs.  We snuggle on the couch and I rock her back and forth on my knees for an hour or so. When I bring her back to bed, she falls right to sleep, yes!

The next morning, as I wipe dried snot from her face (chisel it off more like).  I have a feeling the next few days will be challenging, especially since I am sick as well!  Monday night did not disappoint.  At 3:00 in the morning I found myself in the rocking chair (for the fifth time that night), rocking, nursing, soothing, rocking, nursing, soothing, repeat, my eyes half open with a pounding headache.  I thought to myself “this is what makes mothers so special”.  Because even with no sleep, feeling like I’d been trampled by elephants, I still had the capacity to care for and nurture Iris.  In my rocking chair meditation, I could appreciate that mothers are very special people (fathers are too but this is about mom), because as soon as you become a mother (however that may be), there is a transcendence that takes place.  The person who immerges is the best version of you.  You are a person with boundless energy, exploding love, you are “mommy” and everyone knows there is no substitute for “mommy”.

Super-Mom of the Month: Amy Beckler

 

Let’s face it we have a lot of people to please.  The list seems to get longer and longer by the minute.  I’ve been pressuring myself to do and be the best since as far back as I can remember.  (Sound familiar?)  Well, the truth is I have had a breakthrough.  You can’t please EVERYONE!!!!!

It wasn’t like a switch went off and I was finally perfect.  I am a work in progress.  And that’s ok!!  We are all works in progress.  I think as women and especially moms we are conditioned to be selfless and compelled to help others.  But knock it off!!  Take care of yourself!!!!!!!  (Saying this to myself too)  I’m not saying be selfish but get some perspective.

This Past year I have put myself on the to do list.  I had back surgery.  (After years of being in constant pain) I started practicing Yoga using it as my physical therapy.  Turns out it has been mental therapy too!  I make time for pedicures now as well.  I think Yoga and pedicures are like peanut butter and jelly. They just go together.  There is no way I could relax and enjoy yoga if I kept looking down at my feet and they weren’t pretty.  These changes have made a huge impact on my life.  I have carved out ME time and I don’t feel guilty about it at all!

Moms often lose themselves getting all wrapped up in their children’s activities. Ultimately forgetting who we were before kids and what activities we like to do.  We lose sight of our own goals and aspirations.  That’s what happened to me anyway.  But when the kids started school and I had time away from them I thought wait what am I supposed to do now?

Well it took me awhile but I’m finally on the right path.  Don’t get me wrong, my children will always come first!  But I’m second now and that is a big step for me.  I’m learning to say NO.  If I am not passionate about something I say NO.  If I don’t have time I say NO.  And if I really don’t enjoy your company I just smile and walk away.  No more negativity.  No more drama.  No more self-doubt.  I am a good wife, mother, friend and business women.  And if you don’t like me than I don’t need you in my life.  “Take only what you need and leave the rest.” I heard someone very smart say this and it has stuck with me.  So easy to understand but sometimes hard to put into practice.

Be yourself.  Be patient with yourself.  Make mistakes and learn from them.  Look at life through your child’s eyes.  Everything is simple. Adults are the ones making it complicated.   It is NO secret.  I am a SUPER MOM!  My kids will tell you that.  My husband will too.  But that is what all kids and husbands say….right? (They better if they know what’s good for them )  ;)

 

Amy Beckler                                                                                                                                                                                                                www.abeckler.towergarden.com

www.abecklerjuiceplus.com

 

Super-Mom Christine

The experience of being a Mom for me has been both amazing and often overwhelming.  It’s challenged the way I think about myself, how I behave and what choices I make.  It’s been harder than I imagined.  I thought at 41 I’d be more prepared, especially given everything yoga has taught me and how it has had such a powerful influence on how I think and feel about everything.  Yoga taught me how to let go of judgement, how to be calm in the face of challenge and to trust that things will turn out the way they are supposed to even when they turn out differently than I planned.  Yoga has given me a great deal of freedom but as anyone who practices knows, it takes a long term commitment both on the mat and off the mat.

Becoming a Mom changed everything for me, not in the sense of my beliefs but in the realization that I cannot control everything as I had in the past (or at least I thought I had).  My son Gil is 13 months old and he is pure joy.  I can’t get enough of him.  He has a sweet giggle that stays with me all day.  He has a smile that lights up a room.  He wobbles, as only a toddler can, across the kitchen to greet me at the door when I come home.  He thinks peek-a-boo and patty cake are the greatest inventions of all time.  More than words can say, I feel incredibly blessed and grateful and yet no matter what I choose, I feel intense guilt and worry around how my decisions affect him.  I choose to be a working Mom because I love my work and yet I feel guilty about that.  I worry that I will miss something when I’m not with him or that he will grow up and resent that I wasn’t a stay-at-home Mom.  Since he was born I have felt a heightened sense of vulnerability and concern for his health and safety.  The first time he was sick with a fever felt so frustrating because I couldn’t help him.  I am learning that as a 12 year student of yoga, I am just a beginner.  Life changes, even really good ones, like becoming a Mom bring with them feelings of fear, doubt, worry and vulnerability.  For me, this change has reminded me of the teachings of yoga; to surrender, be present and trust.   More than a kick-ass down-ward dog or the perfect headstand, being a Mom is the greatest yoga practice I’ll ever have.

Super-Mom Michelle Ormes:

First, let me say that I think every mother is a super-mom, although we rarely give ourselves credit for our daily heroics.  We’re more likely to think about what we didn’t get done, what we’d like to do better, how our mommy friends must have it more together than we do, and on and on.  The self-imposed guilt and judgment are the regular stuff of my meditation and reflection on and off the mat.  But that’s a topic for another time.

I’m the very grateful mother of two boys (Owen, 9 and Dani, 7) who keep me hopping, somewhat hip and laughing.  Who knew, at 44, that I’d know (and could discuss with great interest) the intricacies of Lego Ninjago, use “Kung Fu Panda” quotes in my yoga classes and enjoy the antics of Greg Heffley.   But that’s me.  I love being a mom and I LOVE being a mom of boys.  Boys, with their boundless energy, curiosity, uncontrollable need to move and their cuddly sweetness, are the best!  There’s truly no greater purpose in my life than to help my boys have the confidence to be happy in their own skin and to live a life filled with gratitude and compassion.

My definition of what a super-mom is has changed significantly in the past year.  Until the middle of 2012, I defined it by my ability to balance a demanding corporate career with motherhood – I was proud of keeping all the balls in the air and not dropping any.  I would marvel at all that I could accomplish before 6am.  But that life left me alternately feeling accomplished at my ability “to do it all” and feeling unfulfilled and empty.  I felt like no one was getting the best of me; my work, my husband, my kids.

So, after years of thinking about it and feeling “not so super”, I quit my job.  I followed my heart and took a huge leap of faith.   I got my yoga teaching certification.  I took the summer off and played with my kids.  I stopped rushing.  I’m nicer (so my husband says :) .   I pick my kids from school.  I have far less money but the work I do now actually helps people.   And now I feel like everyone is getting the best of me (or so much more than they ever got before).

So my definition of super-mom now is being someone who is following her path, setting an example for risk taking and listening to her heart and intuition.  Now, I’m completely present in ways I never was before .  I am grateful beyond words for having the opportunity to take this chance (not everyone can) and I don’t take a second of it for granted.  But here’s what I’m learning – the way to be the best mom is to be true to who and what I am.  The universe will show me the way.  If I can teach that to my kids – then I really will be super.

Super-Mom Brittney:

 

My daughter Grace turns two next month, and I am expecting my second baby in June.  I learn something new from being a mother every single day.  I remember when Grace was learning to stand, and she ran into the dilemma of not being quite sure how to get back down after standing up.  Once standing, she would slowly, slowly start to squat down.  She would get a little ways down, then stand right back up.  Then she would sit a little further down, and stand back up!  Finally, one day as I watched – she sat all the way down!  She turned around, gave me a HUGE smile and started clapping her hands!

 

That day, and so many since, I am reminded of how far I have come from the days when I may have clapped for myself when learning to sit down.  I judge, I get frustrated, I struggle and turn something that could be freeing and enjoyable into work!  Watching my daughter applaud her accomplishments, express herself freely, open her heart with trust and ease, and learn and grow with PRACTICE in her life has encouraged me to enter each day with more lightness, ease, laughter and openness.  With this perspective, I can take the time to applaud myself for being a woman and mother, who pursues her passions, loves fully, falls and gets back up, and gives from her heart every single day!

 

As I learn from my Grace, I often think long and hard about the most important lessons I want to instill on my children.  Is it the struggles I have faced in my life that will help me impart wisdom to my children?  Should I reflect on my accomplishments and how to achieve goals and dreams?  Do I share mistakes I have made in hopes that my children won’t make the same ones?  What I believe is that if I remain open and present, my heart will guide me in knowing what to pass on to my children as the time comes.

 

My own mother is a tremendous woman.  Despite all the advice she has given me over the years, it is watching the person that she is and the gifts she brings into the world that I have learned from the most.  Overall, I am immensely happy.  I love sharing this happiness, sharing a smile or a warm laugh with other people.  And so, though I may not always know the profound thing to say to my children, I plan to be myself and by leading a life filled with love, joy and gratitude – to provide an example that I only hope my children follow as much as I will follow theirs!

 

As I go through the joys and challenges of motherhood and pregnancy, above all else I am left with tremendous gratitude for the gift of being a mother.  There is nothing else quite like this in the world, and I feel blessed and honored to be a mom!!

 

Super-Mom Katie Barrett

 

I became a mama nearly two years ago to date when my husband and I found out that I was pregnant with our daughter. Ellie was born 42 weeks later after a joyful and life-changing pregnancy. I knew I wanted to be a mother pretty early in life. I am not sure why I was drawn to motherhood – perhaps it’s my oldest child status or sometimes irrational sense of responsibility – but I knew it was what I was meant to do with my life. Beyond that, I really had no idea what to expect from motherhood and co-parenting.

 

Being pregnant reframed my relationship with my body. I know a lot of women say that, but it is profoundly true. Through my teens and twenties, I had a love-hate relationship with my body, putting it through unhealthy behaviors and a lot of negative attention. When I became pregnant, the relationship immediately changed. I realized the potential and importance of my body as a woman – which was much bigger than me. Later, going through 30 hours of induced labor and vaginal birth and a year of breastfeeding my daughter, I KNEW my body was capable of amazing and life-sustaining things. The switch went off that resulted in a whole lot of self-love and confidence in my body’s potential. My yoga practice and teaching gained the benefit of this change – it’s no longer for myself and a vain illusion of fitness, it’s for my family and for my well-being.

 

The second major shift from motherhood and co-parenting was my relationship with my husband. I still get teary every single time I think about him by my side during birth and him interacting with our baby girl. I grew up in a family where my mother stayed at home and my father was a primary care doctor and worked a LOT. Thus, my expectations for my husband’s role in our co-parenting were not robust. We both work more than full time and have found a rhythm of sharing parenting roles and responsibilities that works well for our family. My husband has far surpassed any expectation I had of what he would be like as a father. I know this is because he has an amazing, generous and present father himself. Our relationship has gone from one of love, mutual respect and admiration – to one of true partnership. He is the other half of my brain and my heart, a feeling so wonderful that I never could have dreamed of it.

 

I thank my daughter every single day for giving my life purpose, happiness and a whole lot of love. Go super-moms! Xo, Kati

Super-mom Jori Everitt
I attended a step aerobics class where the teacher was, in my mind, 9 months pregnant and still teaching a hard core step class.  She said since she was consistently teaching before, that it was okay for her to teach through her pregnancy.  I would love to know in retrospect how pregnant she was.  But, this is what I imagined pregnancy for me would be like, continuing to be active, and still eating super healthy.  I figured I would continue my good habits since pregnancy is the most crucial time to be healthy.  That is what all the books say.
My pregnancy went something more like this…pajamas all day, eating white powdered donuts, the big size bag of processed sugary junk food, and grape soda to wash it down.  Watching day time television, as I happened to be trying to interview for new jobs, just trying not to vomit during said interview, to find myself back at home on the couch, none too surprised to have not obtained the position, and fulfilling all the categories listed on the advertisements for depression drugs.  A super mom friend of mine from back in the day texted recently, asking if I had what the Princess has, and if you google Kate Middleton, the British seem to have come up with a Harry Potter term…Hyperemesis gravidarum.
  My parenting kicked off with a bang of forced self introspection.  I tossed ALL the books, and had to figure out how to not feel like I was failing at simply being pregnant.  Not letting definitions, and expectations rule my universe.  I ended up being a stay at home mom, and that has been my unexpected primary position for a decade now.  Nausea and stay at home-ness, have both given me great strength as a parent to figure out what I need to do for and with my children, instead of living up to a definition or what society expects, or what other family members think.
We had a second child, hoping if we had a girl perhaps there was a chance I would not have a repeat of 7 months of a super killer hangover minus the drinking. Second time around I was rattled enough to take the medicine they provide to cancer patients for anti-nausea, and I hardly ever take pills. I gained over 60 pounds, each pregnancy.  Amidst all this hectic, abrupt newness, was amazing peace and creation in becoming parents.  My husband is the best non-asana practicing yogi I know!  We are providing our kids with an entirely different experience than our own childhoods.  Parenting two active boys is often, I dare say, still a struggle at times.  But, our family is based on peace and love.  We create that, and even when family is not seemingly always peaceful, we can send a clear message to our children.  My youngest brought home a quote he made at school:
“Peace is: be with your family.”  We must be doing something right, even if we question ourselves daily. Namaste to all mothers, new and old!

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Super-Mom of the Month
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Super-Mom Betsy Parsons:

I expected motherhood to change me.  How could it not?  Everything was new.  But what I didn’t expect was that motherhood would strip me bare – drop me to rock bottom – force me to face that I had lost myself – demand that I pick up the shattered bits of me and piece myself back together.  It was all at once brutal and gratifying.  I am grateful for all of it.  I have learned who I am and how great my support system is.  I learned how absolutely wonderful my husband is, what a fantastic dad he is, and what a loving and supportive family surround us.  It’s not just me who is a super mom.  It’s my husband, my mom and dad, and my mother and father-in-law who make up this super family.  Each one of us plays an important role. Life is a tremendous gift, and we were all starkly reminded of that during the first six weeks of my daughter’s life. We almost lost her.  The first six weeks of her life were spent in the NICU.  She was a full term baby but a very sick one.  After she came home, every milestone was carefully watched.   She thrived.  And I almost missed it because I was worried about what could be wrong.  It was 9 months later when I started to splinter apart.  She was walking and I was cracking – emotions needed to be expressed.  I needed to feel again.  Not surprising, but I hadn’t been taking care of myself.  I was just trying to make it through a minute, then an hour, and a full day.  I wasn’t taking care of myself.  I wasn’t sleeping well.  I was sleepwalking.  I rationalized that all of this was well within a first-time mom response (ha!).   Eventually, I was diagnosed with PTSD and got help.  I began to piece myself back together.  It took another full year for me to hear the stirrings of my voice.  It’s been over two years, and just recently I realized that I am whole again.  I experienced such joy in finding myself.    I had really missed me!  But losing myself and finding an improved version had taken hold – makes me so grateful for the journey.  It has allowed me freedom to be myself, to slow down and enjoy the moments of motherhood, to rely on my family to play significant roles raising my daughter, to trust, and to embrace the unexpected.  It’s often what I need most!  I’m so thankful for my super family – including my husband who is embracing his role as stay-at-home dad!  Collectively, we’re a super team with a super daughter.