How Yoga Saved My Son

 My son is incredibly active, and quite honestly, has fits often when he is told no, or feels we are “not listening” to him. My husband and I were getting to our wits end after trying numerous things, from ignoring his tantrums, time-outs, taking his toys so he can earn them back, homeopathic remedies, you name it we tried it. But, the one thing that I found myself overlooking, was the one thing, that actually ended up not only helping him cope with his emotions, but allowed us all to connect on an entirely different level as a family.
My epiphany came a few weeks ago as I sat at my desk in our home working, while my son hopped around to his “Wiggles” DVD. Watching him dance and sing, and just be happy in his own little world, brought a sense of grace, and “proud mama” moment that almost brought tears to my eyes. Then he saw me watching him and a fit ensued. “Stop WATCHING ME! Don't SMILE at me!” and he stomped off to his room. Hanging my head, I started brainstorming ideas of what I could do to ease his anger. I felt simply like a terrible mom. Was it me that he was truly angry at? Did I somehow do something? What was his issue? What could possibly make a 3 year old that upset? I had to control my emotions and think of a way to help my son. I had anger issues as a teenager, but I don't remember being that angry at such a young age... The only thing that helped me, I realized was when I discovered yoga.

So, I hopped over to did a quick search for yoga DVDs for little ones and in reading a couple of reviews simply chose one that matched his age range, and personally just seemed like fun! I figured, no harm in trying right? Either he'd love it or hate it. He's always so eager about checking the mail so he was ecstatic to find the little package with his name on it 5 days later. We walked back up to the house, I got out my yoga mat, and put on the DVD for “us” to do together. That irritated him greatly. No way was he going to share his new movie with mom. So, I left my mat out, walked away, and let him watch the movie by himself.

As I went back to my work, I would occasionally peek over my computer to check on him, and watch his little expressions. To my awe, he was not only really enjoying watching the kids on the movie, but he was actually attempting some of the poses with them. Shyly. But, he was doing it. When it was over, he did not say a word, just went back to his playing. He came to me a bit later and asked if we could do a craft together, which I gratefully accepted. The next day, he asked to watch his new movie again. And again. And again.

He was literally hooked on yoga, in much the same fashion that happened to me over 10 years ago. There is something so unique, so precious about what changes in our lives, bodies, minds, and spirits that is unmatched in any other way that I could begin to compare to. Nothing else helped my son that I had found, and granted he is still 3 and still throws fits, but he comes back around to his “center” much faster than ever before. He seems to be much more at peace, he sleeps better, eats better, and his fits are fewer and further between, he even wants me to do his yoga with him now. And there is nothing more sweet in my day than when my son wakes up and the first thing he says to me is, “Morning mommy. We do yoga now?”

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