By Hannah Schenker
Spilt Milk Yoga: A guided self-inquiry to finding your own wisdom, joy, and purpose through motherhood, by Cathryn Monro, was launched back in August and is making waves throughout New Zealand. It is a companion to the inner journey of motherhood. Approaching motherhood as a path to greater self-knowledge, Wellington author and artist Cathryn Monro combines personal experience, honesty and humour to ask:
- Will motherhood ruin my life?
- What happened to my body, and my career?
- Am I doing it right?
- Whose anger is this?
- Is an ordinary life good enough?
- How do I achieve anything?
Cathryn Monro has practised meditation and yoga for the last 26 years, but is quick to point out her book is not about how to do physical yoga poses. Rather, Spilt Milk Yoga approaches motherhood as a path for engagement with our most profound relationships, offering life’s richest and most confronting lessons on love, acceptance and joy.
“Motherhood is like the most intense retreat you could ever go on, all the exits are blocked, you meet your habits, your best and your worst behaviours, and no matter what you have to show up every day and be Mum, even when you don’t feel up to it,” says Cathryn.
“And it’s especially when you don’t feel up to it that we have the opportunity to find a new way forward, because what better place to practice love, compassion, tolerance, and understanding than with our relationships with ourselves, and our children?”
Spilt Milk Yoga is designed to be mother-friendly. Its 52 short chapters are written in an easy-read font for sleep-deprived eyes. Each chapter has a quick-grab aphorism. The author shares her honest and often humorous personal mothering experiences, and provides a practice applicable to each situation. There is also a page of guided self-inquiry in each chapter, ensuring that Spilt Milk Yoga is relevant to every reader’s situation.
Spilt Milk Yoga is a companion guide for mothers who want to experience the happiness, peace, and purpose available in each moment, who want to be more present and connected to themselves and their children. Spilt Milk Yoga is about thriving, not just surviving, in motherhood, and finding your own wisdom, joy and purpose while you are in amongst it all, not in spite of motherhood, but because of it.
“Spilt Milk Yoga is the book I wish I’d had when I became a mother” says Cathryn.
Here is a little of the book launch at Unity Books in Wellington:
Kara-Leah Grant from The Yoga Lunchbox, has also shared a wonderful interview with Cathryn, below. Head to the site for the full review.
There is also a short and sweet interview on Radio Live HERE.
We can’t wait to read it!
Cathryn Monro is a professional artist, writer, educator, facilitator and mother of two. She rates mothering as by far the most challenging, creative, important and fulfilling of jobs. Cathryn’s life, training and work combine her creative drive, a commitment to meaningful education, self-inquiry and group learning processes, and yoga and meditation practices.
Cathryn holds a BFA and MFA from the Elam School of Fine Arts, University of Auckland, and has a 30+yr career as a professional artist. Her work includes large scale public and private commissions ranging from bronze and weathering steel works to installations involving 200,000 strung beads, to gallery exhibited sculpture and works in paint, photography, light and drawing.
Following her interest in collaboration and communication processes, Cathryn spent a year training as an actor in Sydney, Australia. It was there, in 1990, that she began her yoga practice.
On return to New Zealand and alongside her studio practice, Cathryn began a 20+yr teaching career in NZ’s premiere tertiary arts institutions. Her interest in education and inquiry-learning prompted 6 years training as a facilitator of active and interactive group process. This lead to work in a variety of settings including workshop facilitator for parents for 2 years with the Anger Change Trust, Playback for Teenagers for youth theatre, and 11 years as scriptwriter for the charity Books In Homes, promoting a love of reading and book ownership to thousands of disadvantaged schoolchildren throughout New Zealand.
In the year 2000 Cathryn gave birth to her first daughter and in 2003 to her second. Cathryn juggled her career and life as a work-at-home mum alongside her studio practice, writing, and facilitation and spent 6 years in hands-on early childhood education with the parent-led Playcentre organisation.
Over the last 10 years Cathryn has worked with tertiary students and professionals leading integrative, group-learning, practice-based inquiry processes, drawing on the experiences of group members to deepen learning, build collaborative relationships and enrich working cultures.
Cathryn lives with her husband and daughters in Wellington, New Zealand.