Even now, six years later, I still turn to those comforting pages, which are full of gentle ways and humour to get me through the hard bits. Buddhism for Mothers is now the only gift I get for any expecting mother. Leave breast pumps and daiper bouquets up to the others, Buddhism for Mothers is the good stuff that will stop you from going totally mad. Sarah has written several other books with her new one, Buddhism for Couples, just recently released. It sits pride of place on my nightstand. I was completely honoured to have the chance to interview Sarah, who is one of my heroes! Here is a little excerpt from that wonderful conversation. Get the full version in this month’s issue of Healthy Mama Magazine – it’s free!
Tell us a bit about what brought you to Buddhism?
When I was pregnant with my first child I was taking stock and looking back on my life and marvelling at a lot of silly things I’d done. How neurotic I could be, I was worried that I might be a candidate for postnatal depression. I was aware that my thinking could often be very deluded, distorted very drama queenish. I’d always had a flirtation with Buddhism from about the age of 24. I was just reading the same book about once a year but I wasn’t practicing. It was when I was pregnant that I thought I’d ramp up my commitment to Buddhism because it addressed all my concerns about getting postnatal depression, being a good mother, wondering if I’d still be doing stupid things even though I was a mother. It seemed a really sound, wholesome path that could keep a good eye on me so that I could be the best mother I could possible be.
How did you start making it part of your life and how did that lead to your first book Buddhism For Mothers?
I started meditating, I found a group, so I was getting in touch with teachers, the internet was starting to happen and suddenly there was an explosion of resources so I wasn’t just reading the same book over and over again. One day I was meditating and the title of a book just popped up like a little bubble in my head “Buddhism For Mothers”. And it popped up again a week later so I ran into my study and just scribbled out this table of contents and it just went boom. There was a real sense that this was meant to be, this package just arrived. I sent the publisher a few pages even though you’re meant to send them three chapters, thinking they’ll never get back to me. But they got back to me straight away asking when they could see the chapters! I had write it in such a rush. And I ended up handing the book into the publishers the night before going into labour!
Wow, talk about timing! How has Buddhism helped you as a parent?
Parenthood has really seen me commit to the Buddhist path. There has been patches of coming in coming out, it’s been almost 17 years now and sometimes I took breaks or life just intervened. But I always found that when I was neglecting my spiritual practice I didn’t like the direction my life was going. I think my self esteem would start dipping because I’d start to become that neurotic drama queen again and get sucked into the dramas in my head. Until I’d say “Enough!” I had to get back onto that path that helped me be aware of how my thoughts were pushing me around and how there is always a much better way. I’m meditating half an hour a day at the moment even though I’m working full time. There’s million excuses not to do it but I’ve really learnt the difference between Sarah when she’s on the path and the Sarah when she falls off.
Read the rest of this interview and loads more good stuff in the Yellow Edition Part 1 of Healthy Mama Magazine. Enjoy your FREE subscription below…x
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