By Sarah Yataghane
The chilly yet bright golden sun creeps in through the windows as I rise in the early hours with my smallest girl, who along with the birds, likes to make herself known at the break of day. I love this time of year, the days begin to stretch, the hours tumble into one another and a freshly scented new page is turned.
I begin to look at my children with a new delight, for all that calm, freedom and open ended play in the outdoor air seems so much more possible, with the darkness of winter now lingering behind. There is something mesmerising about the blossoming of the spring trees, the buds as they finally give way and trust the light, all that has been buried deep within, now has the permission to grow. There is so much that we can learn from the layers of the seasons through which we live, for our lives are cyclical and one thing that we can be sure of is that the tide will always turn.
For now and for me, it’s time to dust off that compass, breathe new life and bring myself home. As a mother, we too have seasons and the key to thriving is to develop that deeper level of self awareness, to trust that we do know ourselves despite the noise around us. We have energies that shape and form how we show up in the world and how we show up as caregivers to our young. We can be playful and flamboyant and we can be a soft retreating whisper. We can hold onto our pain like a darkened secret or we can tell the stories of the life we’ve dared to live. If we surrender to the natural rhythms within us then we will be sure to find our ebb and flow.
The last few months have felt long and hard, the stolen days of winter, the crisp of the cold and that deep need to be inside of myself. The realisation of the internal draw that nourishing a small baby has had and how that lack of energy has exposed me to feeling not enough. The desire to create and nourish in other ways yet not having the drive to do so, has left me feeling depleted. But once we start to accept our motherhood and indeed our life, as being rooted in cycles, we can truly begin to let go, honouring the words that ‘this too shall pass.’ Just like the natural world around us, we mothers, can be extremely resilient despite the many challenges that are thrown at us.
Now I feel it is time to draw back those curtains, open the windows and let the air cascade inside my physical and mental space.
So how do I plan to navigate this season, honouring my personal desire for awakening, whilst caring for my little loves?
Here are my 10 steps to rediscovering the joy of motherhood this spring:
1. Read beautiful seasonal stories together
There is something so uplifting about great children’s literature it feeds the soul and the senses and is a perfect way to slow down and cosy up. One of my particular favourites is The Root Children by Sibylle Von Olfers.
2. Get Outdoors for extended periods
Nature is such a powerful and grounding force, but how often to we give ourselves enough time to truly get lost with no agenda and no other place to be. This spring I plan to spend plenty of time outdoors, observing, talking and connecting with my girls, keeping things slow and simple.
My children are always the first to whip off their shoes and socks and whilst it can get a tad embarrassing (because they literally do it anywhere and everywhere) this time I am going to embrace it and join them! Feeling the earth (or even the tarmac!!) beneath your feet brings such balance and there are so many benefits from baring your soles!
4. A Slower Homeschool
I have been over thinking and over stressing these last few weeks and I’ve decided that enough is enough. Pinterest will be my friend as we spring into gentle, creative and seasonal activities with a focus on the journey of the process and not the outcome. I really want to take the pressure off and rediscover our joint love of learning.
5. Healthy wholesome foods
I have needed to address my health for so long, I have put it off because the task has felt too overwhelming ~ beginning by centring our days around preparing and baking nutritious, tasty and healing delights is where I am going to start.
6. Seasonal fetes and bazaars
Because what better way than to connect with others and embrace community in a mindful way. Two events that I plan to attend during the Easter Bank Holiday are the Street Eats Halal Food Festival organised by Amaliah and Halal Gems and the Spring Fair at Picks Organic Farm in Liecestershire (because my husband works there!)
7. Ethical sourcing & farmers markets
And whilst we are on the topic of Organic farming, many of you will already know that we frequent the Farmers Markets every weekend in London. I would like to extend this to by looking at ethical sourcing of produce and the importance of shopping local and small with my children.
8. Visit garden centres and grow your own
Grow something at home, whether that be your own vegetables or a beautiful house plant, embrace that sense of achievement as you see your efforts bloom. This is also a great way to explore life cycles and care of the environment in our homeschool and I can’t wait to get started.
9. Live with less
Continuing on my mission to embrace a more minimalist lifestyle my emphasis for our family is to focus on spending quality time together making memories. Stripping back the excess, clearing out even more clutter and consuming less so that we can save some pennies ready for the summer sun.
10. Creating seasonal rituals
Carving out our own traditions that will compliment what is happening in our natural surroundings. I don’t know how, but I do know that this is something I would love to experiment with and explore over the coming weeks.
Spring welcomes a sense of hope, vitality and freshness that many of us will be craving after the winter months. As mothers, we owe it to ourselves to thrive not just survive. If like me, you are heading for somewhat of a rebirth this spring then just remember; even the most beautiful flowers only stay in full bloom for a short time. Give yourself permission to move with the season, both the one outside your window and the one deep within. The pastel shades of blossom that we quietly admire at this time of year, will be washed away with the April showers before we know it. There is a time for rest, there is a time for nurturing and growth and there is a time to hang your roses upside down. Its ok to lay low in the steadiness of the ordinary, to drop what is no longer useful or to nestle in a warm and tender hibernation. But if this Spring has you bursting with the desire to make some changes, to sway in the breeze and dance in frivolity with the flowers, then take my hand and lets walk towards the sunshine together.
Sarah is a homeschooling mama raising three girls in a multicultural family. She is passionate about building and nurturing community for women and mothers. She aims to create safe and empowering spaces both on and offline, to explore shared experiences and have authentic reflection on the topics that often get put to one side. You can join the conversation over at (@a_bitoflink) or catch up with stories via her blog, where this post was originally published. Read her previous piece on the beauty of being flawed.