What is it about child’s pose that just feels so GOOD? (So we all know what I’m talking about here: on your knees, hips back to heels, forehead down, arms down the sides). What I notice first of all in this pose is the physical sensations of SAFETY. I feel the compression of my torso against my legs and I’m all “tucked in”. (FYI, this compression might not feel all that soothing for everyone or everybody. There ARE modifications so you too can feel that relaxing sense of safety and not stress of being “squished”---but I’m not teaching here. ;))
After I notice the safe, grounded feeling of my body, I also notice the relief of “looking inward”. My chin is tucked in and my eyes pretty much have to be closed (otherwise I’m looking at the floor 2 inches away---not pleasant!). I am a Highly Sensitive Person (you can check out the trait here). As such, I take in a LOT with my senses each day. Sometimes it’s just a relief to close my eyes and “turn off” one of the most powerful senses. My eyes rest and simultaneously my attention can rest from “taking in the world”. I start to notice a softening from the crown of my head to my feet---my body starts to let go and drape.
I don’t always think of this in child’s pose but a while ago, someone shared that in child’s pose we have a chance to come AS A CHILD. I have thought about what this means to me. Children come simply---they normally have no real agenda but just to “be there” and “see what happens”. This is such a change from the normal drive and control we try to exert upon our lives. I’m reminded to let go of my agenda as I come to the mat. I also can let go of my expectations: expectations of the teacher, of the class, of myself and how well I judge that I’m doing/not doing. I can just be there---like a child. Another beautiful lesson from these small teachers is the reminder to come empty so I can receive as a learner. Children are little sponges---always soaking in words, stories, and directions. As an adult, sometimes I forget to “not know”. I feel like I have to have it all figured out. It’s hard to just be silent and be a learner. Each time, child’s pose gives me that opportunity.
Now---reality check. Do I really consciously think these things every SINGLE time I come into child’s pose? Nope and nope---that would be mentally exhausting. I have thought and considered these things once---and I have found that the thoughts and meanings I can most use come to me when I just create the space for them on my mat. Normally when I take this child’s pose, I also release the need to REMEMBER it all right that minute. That’s part of the magic for me---trusting that what I need will come.
When I teach, child’s pose is frequently the beginning pose. I find for all the above reasons and more---a delicious reminder to connect with the inner child for ALL of us, bring our focus inward and see what we are here to learn. <3