When I tell people I’m a Relax Kids coach, I think they often assume my kids must be completely ‘Zen’. I can possibly see why; I have quite a varied repertoire of relaxation and mindfulness tricks hidden up my purple sleeve, all of which I teach kids! It would make sense that my home would be an essence of tranquility…um, no! Quite the opposite…
“Mummy, why are you doing that Relax Kids stuff on me again?”
My daughter on the other hand, has shown a little bit more interest – or possibly an attempt at winning some extra brownie points? Who knows! However, she does insist on playing with her cuddly toys whilst practicing a breathing exercise or reading her an enchanted guided meditation and blatantly isn’t listening.
The thing is, I whole-heartedly believe in Relax Kids and their unique seven steps but this leaves me with a bit of a predicament…how can I entwine the magic of Relax Kids into the 'Marshie' household when every time I create a session (tailor-made to their very desires of course), it inevitably ends in rebellious shenanigans? The answer since came to me during this new ‘home-schooling’ experience…as a teacher, I know I can teach my kids but I haven’t. Not one single lesson. We have however, run around the garden (LOTS); jumped on the trampoline (again, LOTS); made things from toilet rolls, played silly games, watched TV (yup, you guessed it – LOTS!) and read some stories – nothing major. This was the exact approach I have adopted to ensure Relax Kids became a proper member of the family. Say toodaloo to the session and follow the rainbow.
So today, I took the Relax Kids, seven rainbow steps to happiness and splurged them into our day. And the best bit…the kids had no idea; they just had a wonderful day! A day that anyone can have.
We started our rainbow day with a keep fit video my best friend’s family made (the daddy is a martial arts teacher and by the looks of it, the kids are heading that way too!) A brilliant start; well, until my eldest boy kicked Daddy’s glasses off anyway – oops! This thankfully was soon defused by having an emergency race of ‘Who can blow their feather across the floor first?’ Deep breaths soon settled any big feelings. Phew.
The play step is an easy one to get going – even with a cuppa in your hand – especially with the sudden yell of…
“The floor is lava in 3…2…1”
Our feel step slotted in quite nicely just before lunch…making the most of the very useful government guidelines of how we can help combat this virus and entertaining my eighteen-month-old at the same time by singing, Wind the Bobbin Up. Sorry, Borris – no Happy Birthday here.
Arts and craft sessions at home generally scare the bejeebeez out of me but because of my irrational panic buying of paper plates, pipe cleaners, beads and coloured paper (the list could go on!) I had this nailed; for a double whammy, I thought I would push the boat out and combat both the breathe and believe steps – save getting messy more than once! So for the next hour of calm, patience and sibling cooperation…honest…we made rainbow affirmation clouds and breathing sticks, both of which helped us with any of those big feelings that popped up to say hi.
The final Relax Kids step (guided meditation) is a clear favourite with my classes. Perhaps it’s the blanket, pillow and eye mask? But my eldest has always refused to listen to them. My daughter couldn’t choose between two so we had both. Lying down in her bed with her eye mask on, she soared through the sky on her unicorn and then felt her body melt away in her cosy, soft bed. She was asleep even before we had even finished.
At the end of our rainbow day, I actually felt pretty pleased with myself; the kids had taken part in all seven Relax Kids steps and they didn’t even have a clue. All they knew was that we had a fab day. We were present in the moment with each other. Was it perfect? No, of course not; it’s not meant to be. Were there blips? Yes, many! But that’s what makes us, us.
Sunshine and Serenity