I tend to spend all my time thinking about what I am doing next, or what I should be doing now that isn’t what I’m actually doing. I suspect most people do. It is rare that I am actually present in moment, but when I do take the time to stop and take in my surroundings, I feel so much calmer.
I have a 10 week old baby, and in the run up to her birth I saw advertised a course that focuses on connection; to your baby and to nature. I thought it looked great, but maybe a little hippy-dippy for me. However after my husband also pointed it out I succumbed and signed up.
Each week was based around a sense, and included time “forest bathing”, which to my mind sounds totally ridiculous, but spending time focusing on the sights, sounds and smell of the woods, with no other aim but to actually take notice of what was going on in the moment gave me a real sense of contentment. I spend a lot of time in the woods, but usually I’m thinking about the dog, noticing what trees need trimming or seeing the bramble that’s choking everything around it.
So after signing up to Mother Nurture’s Nature Circle course each Monday found me trying to get the baby’s timing right so that she wasn’t hungry in the middle of the session (I managed it twice out of the six sessions!) and headed to Layer Marney Tower. The course was based in the woods, and therefore planning for the weather was essential – the first week was perfect, the second was hot and then the British summer set in meaning rain forecast every time. Only once did we actually get wet; one week Jess booked a room indoors for us, so obviously that day the sun came out. The others just had the lovely sounds and smells that follow the rain. This was especially lovely for the week based around the sense of sound.
The baby generally decided she wanted to be fed in the middle, but so did most of them, and that was ok. We fed our babies, and looked after them while sharing experiences, being led through the course by Jess, who was wonderful, and concentrating on being in the moment. Every week I came away feeling relaxed, content and with great intentions to stop and appreciate what was going on around me more often. I’m not doing a great job so far, but one day, I definitely will!