Align With Your Rhythm

Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;  courage to change the things I can;  and wisdom to know the difference.   Reinhold Niebuhr

Grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Reinhold Niebuhr

Last week, my son turned three months. And what an intense three months it’s been. Motherhood is proving to be a huge learning curve.

One of the many lessons I’m learning is to let go of expectations. I entered motherhood with this image of my baby sleeping peacefully in his Moses basket for several hours at a stretch during the middle of the day, giving me time to do yoga, make lunch, take a nap.

How wrong I was! Initially, when Alexander didn’t ‘comply’ with my vision, I’d feel really frustrated. When he woke up after a mere forty-five minutes in his basket, I’d be doing everything I could to coax him back to sleep, while thinking why is my baby like this. Some people’s sleep for three hours at a time.

Eventually I realised that every baby, just like every adult, has their own unique rhythms. And these of course need to be respected. As soon as I recognised this and let go of my rigid expectations, life became so much sweeter. For both of us. I began to accept what his pattern of the moment was and learnt to use any pockets of freedom to my best advantage, enjoying what I did have, rather than wishing for something that simply wasn’t going to happen.

I’m sure we’ve all had times where we’ve tried, so to speak, to force a square peg into a round hole. Of course there are situations where it makes sense to challenge the status quo and fight for change, but equally I think we can all too easily resist the life that is unfolding and as a result not enjoy what’s right in front of us. We might, for example, try to force ourselves deeper into a yoga pose that perhaps our body isn’t ready for and feel disappointed that we haven’t ‘got’ there and therefore miss out on the richness of the experience we’re actually having.

Nature is always such a great teacher. The seasons have their rhythms, each one perfectly segueing into the next. As the buds now appears on the trees, we trust they will blossom in their own time and wouldn’t dream of forcing them open.

Is there anywhere in your own life where you sense you're resisting the natural flow of things? And if so, what if you were to try and loosen your grip and just rest back into the rhythm of the moment?