Melissa’s real story. Yoga & ASD..
My name is Melissa and I am a mum to four children. I had to give up work a couple of years ago to care full time for my eldest son (now almost 16) as he was out of school due to severe anxiety and ASD. ( Autism Spectrum Disorder). I had lots of school issues with 2 of my other children and at one point had 3 of them out of school. This was quite possibly the most stressful and upsetting time in my life. It was at this time I rediscovered my love for Yoga and mindful meditation as it was something I could do without having to leave the house. I felt guilty about not being at work as it was always a huge part of my life but children come first and yoga was my escape and time I kept just for me.
I always loved the work that I did and would often long to go back into working with families and children but as my son gets older it is clear that he needs me as much now as he always has done and probably for the rest of his life. At first this really upset me, the thought that I may never feel satisfied the way that I did when I helped the families I worked with. I would never feel valued as anything other than a mother and often even that is a struggle. But with time I came to terms with the fact that I needed to change the way I was viewing my situation. I thought abut the parts of my previous jobs that made me feel passionate and what enjoyment I got from them. I thought about many things I may be able to do part time but still didn’t feel I could commit to set hours and the restrictions of working for someone else when caring for my children. So I thought about working for myself and what skills, knowledge and training I already had that I could use to get started. One day whilst I was flicking through my certificates it struck me that I have been delivering baby massage and baby yoga for almost 10 years. I thought to myself That’s it, I have spent so many years setting up and delivering sessions for the NHS and Local Council that I could do it in my sleep. I set about organising session in my local area but found that this wasn’t going to be enough if I wanted to make a full time business out of it.
So what else could I do? It seemed to me that the natural thing developing on from what I was already doing was to invest some time and money in to yoga for kids. I searched the internet and found so may different companies and training packages that I was overwhelmed and gave up. Then suddenly one day as I was on facebook and advert popped up and really caught my eye. Mini Me Yoga.
I had a look at the facebook page and then the website and loved what I was seeing. I read all about Kate and made the decision to contact Mini Me Yoga to enquire about becoming an Ambassador. It wasn’t long after that I can a telephone conversation with Kate. Her passion and knowledge oozed down the phone line and I was sold. Within weeks I had completed enough training to get started. I started with a few family taster sessions so I could show people what kids yoga was all about. From there I explained our 2 hour workshop and explorers training. Many families would say to me that they would prefer to come to a session delivered by me which is fine but a key part of what we do is to give those adults who see the benefits of kids yoga the tools to be able to introduce it to the children they look after on a daily basis. So I always explain the benefits or the 2 hour workshop and most of the time they see where I am coming from. Other times I hear comments like “it’s a bit expensive” or “I don’t have the time every day”. So how do I deal with those comments. Well firstly it is only 15 minuets a day and If its not every day it doesn’t matter just do it whenever you can as it is about having fun and shouldn’t be a chore. Secondly I would explain that a kids yoga class would cost between £5 and £10 each time you attend. So in doing the workshops and being able to practice as often as you like you would probably spend less money in the long run.
I love what I do, I am committed to supporting families to enjoy each other and they time they have together while it lasts as children grow up so fast. I love to spread the joy that Yoga brings and help children to start on a journey of calm and positive thoughts.
I can not imagine doing anything else with my life now and I will continue to grow and learn in order to reach as many children regardless of their age or ability as I possibly can.