Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Mindfulness and Donuts

Last Friday I attended a day-long Mindfulness workshop directed at professionals that want to use the techniques in their practice.  I maintain my Occupational Therapy license by attaining continuing education units and I was so excited to go to this workshop not only to use with clients but also for my own personal development.  So I was all ready to give you an in-depth summary with powerpoint and maybe some animation and video (ok, maybe just bullet points) but instead I thought I would share a story.

My oldest has inherited the "Worry Gene" from my side of the family (sorry Son), this is a tough creeps up on you, moves into your brain and gets really comfortable....I'm talking Lazyboy recliner and a bowl of popcorn comfortable.  If it's left alone it will put on the marathon channel (probably Godfather I, II, III, many are there?) and camp out for years.  So on Saturday night as I put my boys to bed he says to me, "Mom, I have this thought stuck in my head.....we all have to die someday." To which I said, "That's true honey, but we have so much time so let's just enjoy it as much as possible."  And he replied, "But time goes so fast."  Now all this talk really pulls at a mama's heart and the familiarity of this line of thinking makes me ache deep down inside, so I pushed back the tears and stroked his forehead (much like my mom did for me) and I tell him to try what I learned in my Mindfulness workshop.  I tell him that we have to train our thoughts and that we can only have one thought at a time so we can choose to make it a good one.  When the ones that make us sad and worried creep in we need to start our breathing.  Breath in slowly through our nose to a count of 4 and then out through slightly pursed lips to a count of 8 and then smile.  It's amazing how the smile works!!!!  It feels silly at first but it releases chemicals in our brains that give us happy, calm feelings....fake it till you make works!!!  I then told him that between his breaths, with the smile on his face, to repeat, "Right now everything is good."  We practiced a few times and he said it helped.  He then asked me, "Mom, do you think we are all here for a reason?"  "Why yes Buddha Son, I do."
My youngest son, in the lower bunk, then let out a big sigh and said, "Mom...." so I kneeled down and leaned in really close to get ready for his existential question and he said (again with the sigh), "Mom, I just don't know what kind of donut to get tomorrow....there are so many good choices."
Yes there are son, yes there are.

Be Well.


  1. love this post. In terms of mindfulness, have you heard of tapping ? It's new to me, recently introduced by some amazing trauma mamas. This post has some good links it - I'm planning to try tapping for myself and for my kids.


  2. Love. This. Post. What a little lovely.

  3. Love Love Love this post!! What a wise mother you are!