Fanning the fire midweek, we are tossing you a spontaneous quote, question, or conundrum related to Monday’s post. We invite you to riff on this prompt or share a story—heartbreaking or hilarious—to spark further conversation about the path of motherhood.

I’m learning as a mother to do less and not cram so many things into a day. To give the few things I choose to do space and breathing room. Faith Collins, my son’s first preschool teacher, told me once the worse thing you can tell a child is to hurry. They just don’t respond well to that energy, and I know my kids hate it when I get frazzled and frantic about being somewhere on time.

And sometimes, like the full prostration Jenny painted on the turtle’s shell, life comes at you hard and fast, full of the unanticipated, things moving in ways you can’t understand, and the only relief seems to be to bow down before the great immovable presence. To pranam  to the steady witness of your own heart.

I did a shamanic journeying workshop recently (taught my Sandra Ingerman). She led us into a dream time trance to uncover our power animal. In my journey a sea turtle emerged. I immediately responded to that slow, purposeful, mindful energy—exactly the animal medicine I need right now. Turtle energy reminds me it’s not only OK to slow down, it’s vital. When you can center and proceed mindfully, you are actually so much more in the flow than when you make haste and arrive in a kerfuffle.

And my children offer me incredible reflection on the turtle continuum….my son so static, that my challenge is to get him moving, and my daughter, so busy, that the challenge is to get her to stop moving.

We went to the Children’s Museum in Denver last week, and we had a good three and a half hours to take it all in without haste.

I was surprised by my daughter’s focus and intent at the museum. She slowed down completely in the bubble room, where they had pipes emitting smoke that she could manipulate to create smoke bubbles. And my son adored the kinetics exhibit, which was playing with balls and gravity and suction—all the good stuff of childhood.