Annual check up and the news is good - I've got a resting heart rate of 51 bpm and the lung capacity of a teenager. It's official: my kids are not actually killing me. It just feels like they are! Worry lines aside, maybe motherhood is good for my health, forcing me to put all that yogic pranayama breathing to work. When things get crazy (ha! as if they're ever not crazy!), if I remember to unclench my jaw and take a deep breath, my heart slows down. All the oxygen to the brain helps me form words - like "Pants! On! Now!" - despite the shrieking I'm hearing in my own head. The fact that I teach yoga to kids with special needs and it would be extremely bad pr to freak out at at my own kids with special needs in front of others means I get lots of practice. That said, stress does take its toll. Dr T suggests a muscle relaxant and an antacid. I bristle at the thought. I am a yoga teacher! Shouldn't I have all this under control? The truth is, even yoga teachers who preach the importance of self-care have a hard time finding enough time to sleep, exercise, eat well, relax, and not let things get to you, every day. Before kids, I could cultivate awareness in my own body and mind ad infinitum (not that I did, I was too busy working). Now, what's going on in their little bodies and brains is often all I am aware of. Yes, my stomachaches might stop if I identified what was triggering them, but managing a child with 6 food allergies is all I can handle right now. Pass the Tums! Dr. T also prescribes cardio, five times a week. I think: Yeah, right. I'm a yogi. I sit. I don't run unless I'm being chased by somebody, or there's free food involved. I teach and take classes several times a week, when am I going to find the time to do more? But then a little voice reminds me I'm 40. I'm fit now, but I can't take that for granted. My kids, with all of their complicated health issues, are going to be around a long time. They demand a mom with the strength and stamina of an Ironman. I'd better figure out a way to take care of them AND myself. So, more cardio, here I come. If anyone wants to join me for trail walking, Wii dance partying, or a swim, let me know. Or if you're serving free food, ring the dinner bell. I'll strap on my running shoes and be right over. How do you take care of yourself? All advice/pleas for help, welcome!