Awakening Child: A journey of inner transformation through teaching your child mindfulness and compassion
“I watch him quietly, this little miracle of creation. He’s sleeping now; his boisterous energy has come to rest. The soft glow of the lamp illuminates his perfect alabaster skin and slightly flushed cheeks. Little freckles dot his cheeks and nose, his chest gently rises and falls and a small sigh escapes from his lips. He’s wearing his favourite light-blue farm-vehicle pyjamas; they’re mostly covered by his bed covers, but a little foot peeks out from beneath. As I reach out to touch his silky blonde hair, he stirs and moves his head to snuggle his cheek into my hand. A glimmer of a smile plays across his face as if he knows mummy’s here, and I know that on some level he’s aware that I’m close by. I witness each beautiful moment unfolding, aware of the flow of my own breath, feeling the cool air rush past the insides of my nostrils, the expansion of the chest, the stretching sensations in the muscles of the abdomen, the pause, the softening of the belly, the fall of the chest, the warmer air rushing past the insides of the nostrils on the out-breath. I’m aware of the sensations of pressure and contact between the soles of my feet and the soft carpet fibres, and tiny adjustments that my muscles make to keep my body balanced. The faint awareness of my pulse, the beating of my heart, underlying each moment. Using all of my senses enables me to inhabit the moment as fully as I can.
Being Logan’s mother for the past six years has been one of the greatest gifts of my life, along with mothering his two older brothers, Connor (aged fifteen) and Ethan (aged thirteen). Each of my children shows me, in each moment that I’m present, whether my communication is clear, whether they feel heard and therefore respected, and whether I’m present to their needs and also my own.”
Excerpt from the book, ‘Awakening Child: A journey of inner transformation through teaching your child mindfulness’
by Heather Grace MacKenzie
O-Books: Release Date 29th July 2016, £13.99 (£5.62 Kindle version)
‘Awakening Child’ is a mindful parenting book, with the unique angle of learning mindfulness through teaching it to a child. Particular emphasis is placed on the importance of compassion, both for ourselves and for others, and moving towards a more heart-centred way of living. There are practical tips for teaching children mindfulness and compassion that will also be of use to teachers, social workers, counsellors and indeed anyone working with children.
The lives we lead, particularly in the Western world, are technologically overburdened and spiritually impoverished. Our children can tell us the various merits of different operating systems for electronic devices, but are rarely in touch with how different emotions are experienced in the body, or how it feels to bring kindness to a moment of difficulty. They are bombarded almost constantly with information at a rate that mankind even 50 years ago would have struggled to begin to comprehend, and mental illness is at an all-time high. Research indicates that one of every four adolescents will have an episode of major depression during high school, with the average age of onset being 14 years of age. The human race is at a tipping point, and we have no sane choice but to begin to awaken the capacities within us that have too-long lain dormant. We can choose to lead a child towards awakening, and thus awaken ourselves.
My youngest, aged 4, learning to meditate
Excerpts from 5* reviews on Amazon:
I can’t recommend this book highly enough. I was glued to reading this, and every chapter really gave me more and more fantastic ideas to use with children I teach in school, as well as with my own children.
I don’t have children, but I work in a school and I’m a volunteer counsellor working with children – this book has helped me to better understand how our turbulent world actually looks through the eyes of children and the ways we can help them to feel more at peace and secure with their place in it all.
Awakening Child is beautifully written and feels both achievable for the reader and authentic