I didn't intend to take my daughter to work this year (daughtersandsonstowork.org). But when I brought G (age 9) to the community center where I teach yoga to try a kids cooking class, the chef was nowhere to be found. "Bring her to your class," the security guard said. "I'll come pick her up when her teacher comes in."
My yoga students - all women who have heard a lot about G over the years - welcomed her and she settled in by the door. "Stretch your arms up overhead, inhale, bring them back down, exhale," I said, and G did it. Hey, G's doing pranayama! "G," I said. "Do you want to join us?" She nodded, scampered up between two women and began to warm up with us, all solemn and quiet until during the cow-cat stretches I hear: "Mom."
Mom: Yes G?
G: When we used to do this with Miss Vitalah, she let us make noises.
Mom: Would you like to make noises?
G: Oh yes! Moooooo! Meeeeoooow!
And then, my class starts mooing and meowing, giggling and barking, silly, delicious fun. Until I hear: "Mom. Mom, I need the bathroom."
I ask a student to lead the class in sun salutations while I take G to the bathroom. And look for the cooking teacher. Turns out, the cooking class is cancelled. I look at the clock. An hour an fifteen minutes left. Of adult yoga, and my child with ADHD. Deep breaths. Think, woman, think!
Mom: "G, I've decided to teach the students how to do massage today - how would you like to be my model?"
G: "Oh, yes! I love massage. I'm very good at it, too. Can I demonstrate on you?"
And so, Mom and G shared Thai Yoga Bodywork techniques with the students who all gamely worked with each other and with G until I hear: "Mom."
Mom: Yes, G?
G: I'd like to compliment the class.
Mom: Oh, what would you like to say?
G: I'd like to compliment them for listening to my mom.
And so, I got to take my daughter to work, and G got to see for the first time...a setting where people listen to her mom. Priceless!
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