Sunday is our ‘spiritual day’ if you will. It is a day for church, but not always in the traditional forms that one thinks of. While, we do have our faith community, I take serious measures to introducing my children to all forms of spiritual practice from a nature hike, exploring art, labyrinth walks, Taize meditation, affirmation and intention projects to church service and traditional meditation groups.
I find when I offer them a variety of resources to guide them in their spiritual curiosity, they are more willing to jump in to where they feel fit for their personality. When we do go to our Church, they are less likely to be defensive or cynical having had these other experiences. I encourage journaling and art, while I celebrate the conversations we have around all this exploration. Mostly, I want them to learn that when they feel they can’t turn to me, or I am not available for some reason, that there is an outlet for them to explore their questioning safely.
This Sunday we went to our favorite bi-monthly meditation group at Bristol Yoga. Some Sundays it involves a nature hike and others like this Sunday, it is in-studio. I must tell you that my heart was full this Sunday at our in-studio experience! It was an hour and a half with the perfect balance of walking us through different techniques and forms of meditation. My nearly 13yr old daughter was blissful, but my more lovable and energy enthusiast Greek 11yr old boy I was more worried about! I was surprised how well he did with just a bit of squirming over an hour and a half! I think his favorite meditation was the mindful eating, as he loves his food!
When we got home, we talked about it a bit and restructured his whole meditation and prayer area in his room opening his yoga mat in front of his altar. We looked more closely at what was bringing him comfort, peace and joy. It was a moment I am very grateful to have had, as he has worked hard to get to this point in his own journey navigating these awkward tween years. Another blessing was their eagerness to do more mindful eating! This is a practice I learned in 2000 in my recovery days and practice and teach on all my retreats. There are so many gifts one can receive, but I love it most when I watch others experience it for the first time. We do our best in our busy meals to do so, but they pointed out we have been more remiss lately. The idea that they brought this to my attention was so validating to the journey I am walking as parent, albeit single mom, when on those tough days you wonder how you are doing.
All this said, this is one experience I am truly grateful today. Meditation comes in so many different types. I say the same for spirituality. You find what works for you and walk with it as you see fit. The more open you are to grow in your own self awareness and spiritual questioning, the more you are going to receive on this amazing journey we call life!