I’m thrilled to share this special Fathers Day Q&A with Brian Leaf, a self described parenting yogi and the author of Misadventures of a Parenting Yogi: Cloth Diapers, Cosleeping, and My (Sometimes Successful) Quest for Conscious Parenting. It’s a book that will have you laughing before page one, think Larry David by way of Ram Dass and throw two kids into the mix.
What have been your proudest moments as a father this past year?
So many. Watching my six-year-old expressing himself through dance. He’s like a small Billy Elliot. Watching my ten-year-olds passion for computers blossom. Giving them both space for this.
Of all the parenting philosophies you studied and wrote about in your book, which ones do you find yourself leaning towards the most?
Free Range Kids. I think it’s so important to let kids take risks and give them some (age appropriate) autonomy.
Could you share any self-care tips for dads? Is there anything you do regularly that gives you time to yourself and enables you to continue parenting from a conscious place?
I’ve been craving more time to myself lately — time to hike, time to write, time to meditate, time in tea shops. It’s a challenge to pry myself away and allow myself to take it. But, of course, obviously, this self-care makes me a better parent.
Any advice for the new dad just trying to make it through the first four weeks of fatherhood?
I can hardly remember. I think the first four weeks were kinda bliss, like the honeymoon phase — it’s all endorphins. After that it can get hard with lack of sleep, lack of downtime, stress, lack of sex, etc. But, it gets easier. Hang in there.
What does your ideal Father’s Day look like?
Gifts and breakfast in the morning. Then we’re heading out for two nights of camping.
Photo courtesy of Brian Leaf