Thursday, January 22, 2015

My Embodied Buddha-Mama

Tomorrow, my baby turns 6.
Jan. 22, 2015

When I share that with some people in my life, they can't believe it's happened so quickly. For me, however, I couldn't have asked time to move in more perfect rhythm.

I feel fortunate that I've been able to stay home with her all these years, working part time as teacher, tutor, and now "climate coach", part-time as mama (or is mama a full time gig?!). I never saw myself doing the stay-at-home mama thing--which, I realize as I write it, is really quite a silly term. I never 'stayed at home'. We went out. We go out. But I digress... Being able to be such a huge part of Kaya's childhood has and continues to bring me great joy--and from what I'm realizing, makes time feel a hell of a lot a good way.

And were she elsewhere, who knows what would have happened with her German...
Which brings me back to the general subject of this here blog on bilingualism.

Damn, it feels great to be 'back'. I've missed writing, I've missed being here, on my own blog. I see that more than 1000 people visit here every month now, and where am I?! Dying to be back, I can say that. While I make no promises, the desire lives strong...I want this for Kaya as she grows older. I keep meaning to publish all of these posts into a book for her--there are those amazing companies that exist that do that. And it saddens me to think of all of the amazing details that haven't been captured for her future.

I'll do my best, however, to fill in some holes in my upcoming posts so I can get back to writing from the present.

Tonight, as I was at a Social Action Gathering for my Citizens' Climate Lobby chapter, one of my friends asked me how our little button was doing. "I couldn't be more in love," I told her, feeling the melting in my heart. "She's my little buddha-mama," I continued. "It's like she's my mom and Buddha embodied in one, guiding me to live life as it's meant to be lived..."

And with that, I shared the story about last week, when Kaya told me (still speaking with me in German these days) that she really wanted to have a sleepover with her friends, Eli and Jacob. When I mentioned this to their mom, she was really into it, and we bounced some ideas around. That night, at dinner, I proposed the idea to Kaya that the boys come over for a sleepover after her birthday party at the gymnastics gym. They could come to our family potluck dinner and then just stay. I was shocked--and incredibly impressed--when she responded with a, "Mama, ich glaube das koennte zu viel sein..." [Mama, I think that could be too much.]

Did you hear that, Mom? Where you left off, Kaya is picking up for you, guiding me to slow down and pack in less...

A few days later, proving that I clearly hadn't yet learned my lesson, Kaya asks me to fill her in on our plan for the day. (This is normal. Kaya loves a plan. She finds great security in the structure and expectation of knowing what's coming down the shoot.) So, I proceed to tell her:
Play date with Scout. Brunch with Michael. Playdate with Eli and Jacob. Buy ballet shoes. Head home.
"Mama, das ist zu viel. Ich glaube, wir sollten nicht so viel machen." [Mama, that's too much. I don't think we should do so much.] she proceeds to tell me, both hesitantly and confidently. Of course it is, I realize in retrospect. But the last thing I expected was to hear it from her. What surprised me even more was what followed. When I proposed that we shorten her play date with her best friend, Scout, and pick up her ballet slipper before brunch instead of after, she went for it. She lives for play dates with Scout. Yet, clearly, stronger for her is her need for balance and calm, her strong sense for what is too much.

Are you loving this, Mom?!

So, with this in mind, I'll keep this post brief and let these sweet stories be my re-entry into my blogging universe. I do promise another post very shortly. I'm eager to set the scene, to lay the stage for where we're at with our German and the latest language development on the horizon...and perhaps even create some bridges for those of you who do share my deep concern for the futures we are creating for our littles.

So good to be back. Please 'stop in' and say hi, if you would. And if you're willing, follow me here (or on Twitter, if you have a concern about Climate Change!).  I think of SO many of you when I write, those of you who have written me on email, and in comments, and have played SUCH a huge role in my journey as non-native bilingual mama, and I feel very grateful for you in this community. While we span the globe, we remain connected.

Despite my most recent silence, I feel that...and I hope you do, too!

In loving community,


  1. Just found your blog and I'm excited you are going to start blogging again :) Happy Belated Birthday to your daughter, Kaya!!

    1. Thanks, Jennifer! I love that you let me know you're's comments like yours that give me the extra push to blog when there are so many other things I could (and should?!) be doing...keep in touch! Will look forward to hearing from you again soon!


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