Niko’s preschool class celebrated multi-cultural day today and his teacher asked me if I could come share some things about our country with the class cause he’s one of the only non-Indian kid in his class. Hmmm I agreed to do it. I struggled with the project and what I would present cause there was just so much info that I would have to present from the country of China, Philippines, and Laos. Ok, I know I’m lame but I don’t have much historical knowledge on all these countries. I grew up in America and my parents weren’t that traditional. We had our family traditions that I didn’t think was anything special when I was growing up. The only thing I have is bits of the language. Hubby was american born and doesn’t even speak either one of his native language.
I realized that perhaps sometimes I struggle to find my authentic self because I’m not grounded in my roots. I’ve grown up in a place where external influences heavily taint my true self. I’ve masked myself with layers of social domestication because I wanted to fit in. Not too many people know where Laos is because it’s a small country and not as glamorous like Thailand. Universe is probably trying to tell me something again because this past Christmas I met an older white guy who knew more about Laos than I did. I’ve never even met anyone who even knew where this country is and then given the opportunity to speak at my kid’s classroom about my country… coincedence? These past few years, yoga has slowly helped me peel away the layers and started to reveal my true self. Sometimes I find things that I don’t like about me, but the process of finding that part of me helps me to grow and become what I know not what I can become.
I’ll add this to my bucketlist of adventures for the future to visit my homeland. In the meantime, I’ll make use of my library card.
One last note… we went to dinner at Elephant Bar again.. ordered the same salad and they forgot to add the walnuts to the walnut citrus salad again! I know times are hard, but don’t advertise candied walnuts in a candied walnuts salad if you don’t want to give it to us! I wonder how many patrons were robbed of their walnuts! I’m so glad yoga has given me the skill of awareness.
Today’s adventure is a competition between driving in the pouring rain or trying a new restaurant. I’m a creature of habit and like consistency so trying out a new restaurant today was pretty exciting but also resistant due to a bad experience I had the other day at a big chain restaurant (ahhh hem.. PF Changs in Sunnyvale = very expensive worse than Panda Express quality food). I might as well hold my breath like I gripped my steering wheel while constantly peeking out my rear view for any crazy drivers today.
So we went to Elephant Bar. I already had my list of “they better not…” running through my head because I wanted a delicious and satisfying meal. Got seated quickly and service started out good. Kids got settled with coloring activity. Menu looked promising. Appetizers ordered. So far so good… until the waitress brings us plates and settings. Only 3. Ugh.. there’s 4 of us?! It’s annoys me when waiters don’t treat Niko, who’s 3 going on 4, like a person who eats at a dinner table and therefore would need a plate and utensils. I mean, kids do eat with their fingers, but he is part of the party. I get it if he was an infant in a baby carrier, but when they asked “how many,” I did say “table for 4.” Same thing with places that only bring water for two of us and leave the kids out.
Sorry Niko they forgot about you. Niko: “But why?” Mom: “I guess they didn’t think you were a person or something.” Niko: “I’m human.” Mom: “How do you know know you’re human?” “Because I’m a boy.” LOL Yes! You are a part of a whole! Unfortunatley some people don’t see how everything is a part of a whole from a silly little thing as assuming a 3yr old doesn’t need a place setting for dinner to a yoga pose to how we interact with others. How we do anything effects how we do everything.
Yoga provides such a great medium to practice this. Today yoga is often presented as a form of exercise. It is in a sense because it challenges the physical body. Ask a committed practitioner and they’ll often tell you that they came to yoga for the physical exercise but before they know it, they’re having a secret love affair with the practice. Why? Because yoga is a part of the whole.. connecting oneself to a higher Self. It’s not about getting the pose perfect. Ok you’re gonna look better with practice, but it’s finding that each pose is part of the practice… that is each pose brings us closer to nothingness. It’s realizing the inner self, the space between breaths, the space between thoughts. In this pause we begin to see how we are all connected from the grain of sand on the ground to the annoying waitress serving me dinner.
Yoga is the part of the whole. When I commit to myself, I naturally want to share my experience to those I love and those around me. Soon my community gets infected. The people in that community share to their neighboring communities and those communities share to their communities. Pretty soon the whole world is involved. And that is how we are part of a whole! How we do anything is how we do everything.
Waitress was lucky I had that in mind cause I didn’t flip out on her for overlooking Niko and forgetting my candied walnuts on my citrus salad that was suppose to have candied walnuts!