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“Yoga Mom”? Suck it, bitches

in Public Display of Yoga, YD News

minivan-ommobileWell, we sure did receive some amazingly uplifting and inspiringly Spring-y comments for our latest giveaway. yay! But out of all the entries, the award for the bitchin’-ist (in all respects), most interesting, and oddly placed comment, hands down, came from “don’t call me a Yoga Mom” Elaine. We’re not entirely sure if she got the wrong post, had so much steam pent up she just had to vent it right on the spot, or if somehow this was her “favorite spring activity” entry into the giveaway. Frankly, we don’t care! She’s fed up with being considered an “inauthentic” yogi because she’s a middle-aged suburban mom. We hear you Elaine! And we thought everyone else should hear you too.

And here you are, the unedited comment. You just try and call her a “Yoga Mom”.

They used to call us soccer moms. How 1990s. Apparently, the new patronizing term for busy women in their 40s is “Yoga Mom.” Even the venerable New York Times has published condescending articles about middle-aged women, accompanied by graphics of an incompetent ditz, a latte in one hand and a yoga mat in the other as she talks on her Bluetooth and drives her minivan around her suburban town. An acceptable stereotype, apparently offensive only to those of us who are obviously stupid, seeing as we have uteruses and wrinkles all at the same time.

More concerning is the contempt from within the Yoga community. I am always dismayed when I read a blog post or an article (and, sadly, there are many) that sneers out at the world. “Suburban housewives in health clubs and community centers,” they say, “that’s not REAL yoga.” (Because, I suppose, for these people, nothing says “Authentic Yoga” like passing judgment on another person’s practice. Curious.)

Oh, stop, people. We middle-aged suburban women who have kids are just as relevant as the rest of you. And, I can tell you, my classes at the local Y are a true Kula. We make use of the gym’s childcare center, we join together, and for a precious hour or two we center our minds and spirits, grounded in our physical being. (And, if I’m a good girl and don’t whine too much about core-centric asanas, our teacher treats me with the mad euphoria of a long-held pigeon pose!)

It doesn’t matter what you think of us, you New York Times, you “authentic” yogis. We enter our studio, our Activity Room, our Community Center as bits of glass. But, our silly chatter blends and melds into one breath, one voice. We move as one through our practices, lifting each other with a like energy. By the end, Yoga becomes the light that shines though our sad piece of glass, sending rainbows across the room, across our communities. And, together, our “inauthentic” kula of women shines together like a glorious chandelier lit from within by the light of our prana. Laugh at our minivans and playgroups if you must, but, remember that we are the fuel in your community machine. We volunteer in your schools, your shelters. We raise funds for suffering people nearby and around the world. We nurture young ones, and teach them the loving kindness we seek to build in yoga.

Wow. Too serious, too long for me. In short: Suck it, bitches. I’m an old bag who loves her practice. Haters, shut it. But, please….stop calling me a “Yoga Mom.”

I find “Prana Mama” to be a far more appealing phrase.

thoughts? comments? concerns?

UPDATE: please note… not directly associated with ThePranaMama.com website, which was first to roll out the term as far we know.

62 comments… add one

  • right ON! prana mamas rocking the kula.

  • oooohhh, I am stealing Prana Mama….

  • Prana Mama it is. Love it!

  • I love this woman. I had a life of backpacks and junky cars and one meal a day while I worked and spread the joy. Late nights, bad coffee, granola… sleeping on the ground under the stars, playing in bands in the clubs, loving the world. The only thing missing at that time was a good yoga practice, and where I was 20 years ago, you didn’t find an educated, licensed, certified teacher. And I was FAR too poor to find someone that could teach, but had to make a living like everyone else so you couldn’t get it for free. Please! And after working hard and putting myself back through school, and being blessed with an amazing daughter, I’m now able to follow that breath that leads me to a wonderful school that can teach me well, to round out my life. What’s different now? I drive a nice car. :) I’m a Prana-Mama and proud!

  • Most of the yoga classes I teach are by donation and in local community halls so it’s not surprising I get lots of full-time stay-at-home mothers along. I’ve never heard the term “Yoga Mom” – but then again here in NZ we managed to escape the whole “Soccer Mom” thing as well – but I love the term Prana Mama and may offer that to my mama yoginis!

  • ‘Prana Mama.’ Loves it!

  • You go girl! Prana Mamas unite!

  • Thank you, Elaine, for pointing out the latest way to marginalize and minimize what women do. No one notices or comments on guys taking boxing or martial arts classes. Men who do these activities have their own particular tells, just like women who do yoga. But, because they’re men, what they do is automatically approved, and the tells are either ignored or coveted status symbols.

    Women however, are judged by everyone. Yoga is silly not because it’s silly in itself, but because many women do it. Hence, the cracks about lattes, bags, and cellphones, the offensive labels and the strange propensity to judge womens’ practices. These are all ways to attempt to characterize and stigmatize women. Sorry to get all feminist theory on ya’ll, but it’s annoying.

    OM.

    “Authentic” yoga? Don’t get me started.

  • Shepster

    You rock Prana Mama! As a yoga Dad, I agree with it all. I’d love to see the twentysomethings have a practice and yogic life half as authentic as mine. I fit in a practice everyday, around all my other parenting, husbanding, and work duties. Lulu that biatches!

  • Love it! Totally. And don’t you dare call me a “Mommy Blogger” either, bitches!

  • Jack Swan

    So what do you call us guys in our 40′s that do yoga? I don’t drive
    a minivan though… Can I qualify for a title still?

    Thanks!

  • can this be a bumper sticker for the minivan?

  • Darby

    Elaine, YOU ROCK.
    And, Emma, yes I want that bumper sticker!

  • Annie

    Rock on, Elaine! That was very well put. Thank you!

  • Julie

    Suck it bitches is right! Also: Namaste.

  • David

    Talk about overly sensitive and taking something far, far to seriously … sheesh !

  • As a ‘yogi’, why in the first place would she care (hence the extensive commentary) what others think about her practice or life in general? She is validate in stating that some ‘authentic’ yogis have a tendency to poo poo others’ practices. One is best served to ground into one’s own practice and self, and shed the external judgments. Prana Mama is fun, though (even though it is yet another label).

  • That rant was rad, Prana Mama. Thanks for the offering. Nobody can do it like you do.
    Spread LOVE.
    ~Gillian

  • Whoo Hoo you go girl!
    That kula at the Y, that precious glass you describe.
    Prana Mama bring on the Citta!
    dhana

  • To the glorious fearless Elaine and your stunning articulation of the “curious” judgments being passed by “authentic” yoga practitioners,
    to the shining chandelier of the PRANA MAMAS everywhere,
    to the REAL YOGA shining through the individual bits of glass,
    to the contributions of time, money and love made by all women,
    and even to those journalists who fire off inaccurate, insensitive, insecure catchphrases with no experience of motherhood or yoga,

    i bow down.

  • Sarah

    that’s a very angry woman! It would be nicer to refute claims without name calling and harsh language. Instead, she just sunk down to the level she’s complaining about. I guess everybody needs more yoga.

  • Sarah, I think Elaine is just being sarcastic, silly and funny in her writing, the labels of Yoga Mom are denigrating, sad and uncalled for, we all agree.

    Perhaps “suck it, bitches” and “haters, shut it” are offensive to you, and that’s understandable. Strangely, in this context of the YD forum, the surprisingly brash quality of those comments actually made me giggle, kind of like sharing a secret with my best friend in 5th grade.

    And we agree on one point for SURE, we all need more yoga. Ahh, if we could all take class every single day and use our findings in every single interaction…………

  • How hard is it to be a yogi ascetic without family or attachments? Not very. Including asana practice into a busy life should be commended. I think a lot of suburbanites, this yoga dad included, want more than a run on the treadmill at the local 24-Hour Fitness, and are including practice into their already hectic schedules. We recognize that our minds need as much conditioning as our bodies, if not more so. Viva la Elaine!

  • The supportive comments from dudes warm my heart.

  • Elaine

    Oh. Oh, My. Uh…Hi, everyone!

    I really didn’t intend to write a treatise the other day. I hadn’t read any of the other comments on that thread, but spontaneously had the glass/prism/chandelier meditation during a Savasana, and thought it would be nice to share it. But, then I read that demeaning NYT “Mommy Blogger” article (Probably the same one that has you fired up, Lindsay!) and my brain and my fingers got away from me. The result? A big Too Long; Didn’t Read from the girl who apparently can’t shut up!

    To the few who were put off by what could seem like bitter anger, I apologize for perhaps mis-conveying my tone. Elena is correct when she says I was meaning to be silly… if you could actually hear me saying “suck it bitches!” while bouncing around like a fool, you couldn’t possibly take it for anything hostile…it’s more of a hyperactive and affectionate “go, me!” from a completely non-threatening spaz. These are not things that travel well on the internet, though!

    Should I do extra yoga to deal with my indignation? Um…yes, please! (Here are my three kids, I’ll be back when I’m good and mellow, kay?) Personally, I do think that the peace we find in yoga is wonderful for helping us stay serene and strong in the face of unfairness or mistreatment. However, the “fake” yoga I get in my suburban Y is fundamentally opposed to turning that serenity in to complacency. My spirit will always get riled up over injustice, I hope. But, with my yoga practice, maybe my heart will hurt over it a little less.

    Yoga truly can be for everybody who wants it, moms, dads, single whippersnappers and elder adventurers. One of the most beautiful things it can give is a welcoming philosophical home for anyone who wants to unite body, mind, and spirit. I’m afraid I stumbled on one of those “AUTHENTIC” yoga types early on in my practice, and the rejection and dismissal was actually pretty hurtful! No new yogini should ever get the message that “you and people like you don’t belong here.” So, that was the other element that set me a-ranting. That aside, though, I’m not the Raging Ranter of Yoga that it might seem. Although, if my teacher had us in low chair one minute longer last class, I might be singing a different tune on that. (That was another joke.)

    Thanks for all the kind shout outs…judging from my excessively long comments here, it might be time for me to get my own darn blog. Once I get the darn Prana Mama Blog going, (as if I could call it anything else now!) I’ll insert it in the website link box…Thanks, fellow Dorks!

  • I’ll be the first person to subscribe. I thought your comments were hysterical.

  • i’ll be the second person to subscribe. then i’ll buy the first 100 PRANA MAMA bumper stickers… let me know if you don’t want to make them. perhaps i can sort that out!

  • And, we are live.

    I’ll add some Pranamama goodies to a Cafe Press shop tomorrow. Which reminds me that I need a YogaDork tank top to wear to class this weekend…..

    Thank you, everyone!

  • Yep, that NYT Mommy Bloggers bias got my panties in a twist for sure. Apparently I’m still holding on to it. If you’re interested, here is a discussion http://www.thesitsgirls.com/2010/03/ny-times-article-about-mommy-bloggers/

    Anyway, congrats on the blog ‘n stuff, Elaine. And thanks YogaDork!!

  • OMG,
    I’m in love….

  • SADIE’S IN! love it. i’ve already subscribed to http://www.pranamama.blogspot.com
    and i’m psyched to see more from Elaine.

  • Joanne

    Suck it bitches!! HA!! Fantastic. Now THAT should be a bumper sticker!!

  • The blog is at http://1pranamama.wordpress.com. Can you throw together some t-shirts as well as bumper stickers?

  • admin

    what a phenomenon! knew this had to be posted and seen on the front page for all. so amazed by the response!
    Elaine you are a superstar, and to you all you Prana Mamas, rock on!

    let me know what else we can do here on YD…you can bet we’re here to help spread the word ;)

  • so, the next line of products at the Yoga Dork zazzle store will be Prana Mama by #yogadork???

  • Yes. I want a Prana Mama t-shirt.

  • Sarah

    Yes!!!!!! Prana Mama, you tell em girl!

  • Freda

    Just a FYI, there is a well established blog already out there named the Prana Mama which looks like it has the same focus sans Suck it bitches

    http://www.thepranamama.com/

  • Joanne

    Has anyone stumbled onto this blog before:

    http://www.thepranamama.com/

    I’m not a Mom–but it seems pretty cool.

  • Yogini

    You can count me in. The Y has a once a week yoga class, generally. Very few can take yoga once a week and get much benefit from it. I am no suburban mom, but an middle aged person with medical problems and commuter and caretaker issues. I can dedicate my approval of your householder’s post to every yoga teacher who ever thought I had the time or the money, or the closet space for the proper clothing to give up my own home practice (in addition to the studio) in favor of spending $135 for an unlimited month or $1000 a year. Authentic yoga??? I can’t afford to care !

  • Thanks for the links to ThePranaMama. I hadn’t seen that site before and will email her to introduce myself, etc. She’s a certified teacher who does a lot of work with parent and child yoga, which is awesome!

    The blog I’ve just started is more humour and general spiritualty, so no real crossover. My practice is still a child itself, and, while I am enthusiastic about yoga, I couldn’t offer the kind of serious practical yoga advice that Thepranamama gives on her very sophisticated site.

  • Elaine … love it! As a certified Prana Mama who drives around with both a yoga mat and a ton of crushed goldfish crackers in my car I totally get what you are saying. Do I hate when my post baby belly hangs out of my shirt in downdog? you betcha! But I’m busting my asana in classes along with the rest of the ladies. I have a SLEW of yogini mom pals… we get our kids together and talk pranayama and yoga and sanity. We all agree on Ujyaii breath as a way to keep from yelling and to deal with all the joys of child rearing. Yoga IS my bailout.. I am a #yogadork and definitely I am a Prana Mama. Count me in!!

  • LOVE this! Thank you, Elaine, and I can’t wait to read your new blog!

  • Loved the comment and subbed to the new blog! I’m a longtime suburban yoga practitioner who happens to be a mom as well — have strayed a bit from the practice path lately but hope to get back to it — without all of the “hipper than thou” baggage that sometimes comes along with it…

  • Yogini

    Oh, yeah–if the high cost weren’t enough to turn off people with mortgages, modest pay or fixed incomes, the so-kewl trendoids still flocking to the classes do the rest of the job!

  • souperjess

    If yoga Moms are the new soccer Moms then Namaste, Bitch! LOVE your article!!!

  • While I appreciate the article’s point-of-view, I’d love to point out my blog, which has been up and running for almost a year, ThePranaMama.com. I invite you to join the thousands of readers in the U.S. and Canada and check it out. Sorry Yogadork, Elaine and Elaine-fans – but I’ve already been-there, done that.

    What I find most interesting is that this topic of authentic yogis lends itself to my point. If Elaine were a true authentic yogi, she’d recognize the lesson in Asteya, here, that is, non-stealing. Yoga Journal did a great job of explaining this by stating, “Respect the time and energy of others, give credit where credit is due, and see if you can help build up the world’s kindness reserves by giving more than you take.”

    YogaDork, I do believe we’ve been in touch before and you should have known better in this case. Shame on all of you who call yourselves authentic yogis for not recognizing this PranaMama’s hard work and creativity.

  • admin

    @The PranaMama
    Thanks for your comment. Hope you know the intention behind posting Elaine’s comment was not to steal your idea or creativity. YD simply posted the comment, which was a pretty damn good one (why it was posted), and what happened from there was out of our paws. In this case, it doesn’t seem as if knowing better is really relevant, but we appreciate any and all comments including pointed fingers and the blowing of raspberries, etc.
    In all seriousness, it should absolutely be noted that ThePranaMama.com, your site, was the first on the scene and surely you will receive the appropriate attention. Thanks for clearing it up!

  • Amy, I was composing a response to your email, but as you have chosen to re-accuse me in a public forum, I will reply here.

    I posted my silly rant a few weeks ago, and was pleasantly surprised at the response. Based on comments here and personal emails, I charged ahead with a blog, did a domain search, and bought a couple hundred dollars of domain names. (Stupid GoDaddy didn’t bring up your sitename when I searched to see if it was already in use, even though I got the trademark information that I’m sure you have…a now-defunct store in Boulder owns the rights for commercial use at this point) After I’d done this and started writing, someone here posted a link to your site. Now, I must say, your site far to comprehensive to be called a mere “blog,” you have a more far-reaching clearinghouse for natural family living, with regular links to content all over the web. Regardless of how it started, you are clearly now a businesswoman creating a business centered in an area dear to your heart. And, that’s great, I like to see the capitalist system get around to rewarding people with an actual positive message for a change. However, my dorky little commentary is hardly a threat to your business. I am just an unemployed humor columnist who ranted on someone else’s blog and managed to make a few people laugh.

    As soon as I heard of your blog, I emailed you to introduce myself, and, out of respect for the fact that you used the phrase a few months before me, I posted a link to your site on my blog. If I hadn’t had the courtesy to contact you, you would probably not know that I exist. I do not appreciate being judged and accused of theft when nothing was stolen from anyone. Seeing as I proposed “Prana Mama” as a sassy alternative to “Soccer/Yoga Mom,” it seemed to me a rather generic phrase, if not a cooler one than those on the table. Can you imagine people fighting over who gets to use the phrase “Soccer Mom?” I didn’t steal anything from you, any more than you stole from the Yoga teacher in Texas who has taught “Prana Mama prenatal Yoga” since the 1990s or the Children’s clothing designer who has operated as “pranamama” for five years or even the aforementioned now-defunct store in Boulder that holds the registered trademark.

    The “authentic yogi” discussion in my original statement was meant to state that it is decidedly against the principles of yogic practice to sit in judgment of the authenticity of others. With all due respect, I don’t think that this “lends itself to [your] point” that YogaDork, I, or any of the commenters here are somehow “inauthentic” for having a chuckle at a simple rhyming phrase.

    No one is disregarding your creativity or impinging on your business. Indeed, a different response to my initial contact could have provided you with a valuable business opportunity to attract new visitors to your site. I have read many parts of your site in the last few days, including your more “confessional” sections, and frankly, you don’t have to worry about my blog being confused for yours. You have heartfelt stories and practical information, and I have snark. I doubt that many of your readers particularly care about my site…you had doubters about “The Three Martini Playdate,” for crying out loud, and that’s just a wimpy afternoon for me and mine! However, I think that the people who enjoy a touch of my humour probably also might like some more “real” information, and the link to your site could reach even more people than you already have as followers.

    As a gesture of goodwill, I will leave the link to your site on my blog unless you ask me to remove it. When I originally contacted you, I hoped we’d have a friendly exchange about the wonderful things yoga can do for a family. It seems an understatement to say that I am disappointed in how it played out.

  • a renowned philosophy/religion teacher once offered that if an idea comes to mind, it means someone else has already had it – because it’s good enough to have in the first place!

    elaine came across this idea so honestly and we all loved it (those of us who hadn’t heard it before) – so rest assured, original pranamama – no “stealing” is happening. this is a community that needs to come TOGETHER, not break apart like fifth graders over a moniker that makes sense for all of us.

    elaine, you’re a class act to link up to the original prana mama blog.
    in my mind, we are all prana mamas; we should drink if we want, curse if we must, but always at the core of this is LOVE, RESPECT, CLARITY and CONNECTION. the discussion’s been had… now onward and upward, in support of each other.

    pretty please.

  • ditto what Elena said… Elaine I love that you are such a class act to link the original blog, PranaMama relax, you just got some free press. Perhaps we can all come together and celebrate our maternal yogini-ness? Yoga is about community and support and not anger or hostility. PranaMama it’s better to practice Aparigraha and enjoy our oneness than to hold on to something b/c you feel it is your own. If the original yogis did that we wouldn’t be having this discussion.

    YogaDork, thank you for providing an outlet for all this fabulousness… so many amazing convos continue on your pages. It’s a gift you share. Much love to you.

  • Joanne

    Wow. This seems to have turned into a yoga-war. To Thepranamama–your site is fabulous and has so much information!! Do you really think that Elaine is STEALING? Those are harsh accusations. I was SHOCKED when I read that. A leader in a yogic community hurling insults? WHAT???????

    You have an opportunity here to lead by example–I’m sure you have faithful followers of your blog–and to us yogadorks–show us that you are an open-minded yogi, willing to think OUTSIDE of the box, and see that there was no ill-intent on anyone’s part here. PLEASE. My inbox is filling up with responses to this thread and it’s getting a bit out of hand.

  • I am not out to start a war over the term – I merely asked that for those “Yoga Moms”, “Prana Mamas” or whatever you call yourself consider supporting, not fighting, another site already in existence – one which stands as a focal point of my business in freelance writing, and one I fear could be confused with your blog, Elaine. I appreciate your humor, and Yoga Dork’s as well, and I think you’re an amazing writer! But for my own career’s sake, I’m just nervous about the association of what some may consider offensive. “Suck it, bitches” is not something I really want an editor considering me for hire to read and think is me, Amy Bevan. Aside from that, I thought the whole bumper sticker and t-shirt thing was going beyond a blog, and the fact that YD was saying “You can bet we’re here to help spread the word,” made me feel compelled to point out the coincidence. That is all.

    Not sure why some of you feel the need to attack me – perhaps my comment above came across too harshly. But I am trying to protect my name and business, something that has not been easy to do as a “Yoga Mom” with two kids under 5. Surely there are some of you out there who can appreciate what it means to build a career from home while caring for your family.

    These are my last words on this thread. If anyone wishes to discuss it more, please visit me at http://thepranamama.com.

  • oooh, a tricky situation that calls for all parties to dig deep for their yoga roots and learnings.

    I used to be in the website business when the internet first got started and we ran into similar issues and questions about URL infringement all the time (they related laws were just being developed then which will give away my age…). Basically, if a name is not trademarked, it is not protected. In this case, it’s somewhat of an ethical dilemma as our our yoga community is not “big business” – it’s based on personal relationships – whether they be in person or via the social space.

    Amy, the original Prana Mama, has a business that has been established for over a year and she has obviously worked really hard to provide a wonderful product with a particular wholesome, yogic image for her readers. In addition she is using her blog to establish her new career as a freelance writer for some major magazines. Her blog/website is a bit like one of her children, as many of ours is to us. (Imagine is I decided to start a blog called Yoga Dorks or The Yoga Dork and eveyone jumped all over it like it was a novel, new concept?) If your child is threatened, you can’t help but instinctively react to protect her. Amy’s concerns are legitimate and if I were in her shoes with her particular career, I would have similar concerns.

    For what it’s worth, my suggestion would be, at the very least, for Elaine to do what she has promised and that is to BOLDLY note (preferably with The Prana Mama logo?) at the top of her new blog, a the differentiation between the two blogs, and link to the original.

    In the end, as some have said, this could be good for driving traffic to a valuable space for prana mamas and families – http://www.thepranamama.com.

    I wish you both the best and hope that a yogic approach will prevail.

  • In a way, I agree with Elana that there is a hint of 5th grader stylee going on here. And I’m not so sure that’s a bad thing. I teach yoga to 5th graders often and find their honesty and lack of editing quite refreshing. They have not learned to bite their tongues in a politically correct posture just yet.

    Thank you to Yoga Dork for providing a forum wherein disagreeing members of a community can voice their genuine feelings. Yet another Yama being summoned here, Satya. In conflict resolution, each party sharing their true feelings is essential, even though it often ripens the wound for a time. Non-Violent Communication is on my mind as we are bringing in a couple of NVC Facilitator’s for our Youth Peacemakers Training this month.

    I’ve tried putting myself in both Elaine and Amy’s Prana Mama bare feet to apply the NVC technique and, in doing so, I can see both sides. For Amy, the “OG” Prana Mama, I imagine she might be feeling some thing like this: “When Elaine uses the name Prana Mama for her blog, I feel concerned and anxious because I need to keep my writing and reputation clear and distinguished from others in order to advance as a freelancer.” Therefore, she is requesting that Elaine use a different name for her blog.

    Applying NVC to Elaine might sound something like, “When Amy accuses me of stealing, I feel “insert a sassy feeling word,” because I need to enjoy freedom of creativity and ideas, as well as honor the financial investment I’ve made into the name.” As such, she is requesting that the two Prana Mama’s work together.

    Both parties seem to have legitimate concerns and requests. No matter what ends up happening, I think it’s great that such a candid dialogue is taking place. All too often in yoga world, I see us trying to be perfectly balanced beings of light, when in reality, we all get pissed off and feel stepped on at times. Good to get it out in the open and feel some support.

    (forgive me for sounding like such a middle school teacher and for taking the liberty of thinking in someone else’s shoes. i find it a very helpful technique for discovering what someone’s needs might be in a conflict. it works like magic with 5th graders.)

  • For what it’s worth, my suggestion would be, at the very least, for Elaine to do what she has promised and that is to BOLDLY note (preferably with The Prana Mama logo?) at the top of her new blog, a the differentiation between the two blogs, and link to the original.

    I linked to Amy’s site as soon as I found out about it, so I’m not sure where you got the idea that I hadn’t. Since this thread was revived, I have further enhanced the disclaimer by adding the other two “pranamama” businesses which have long been in existence (indeed, they predate Amy’s site as well) and putting an additional disclaimer in the “About” section (which, to be honest, I couldn’t figure out how to access before Amy commented there. I had to follow the link in my notification email to do it. I’m new to Wordpress and so am still tweaking stuff like that.) As a former marketing professional, I can tell you that if I were to post anyone’s logo on my blog, the average reader would subconsciously assume that the logo represented an endorsement of my work and not the other way around. Amy’s comments have made clear that she does not want viewers to assume that she has endorsed my rather irreverent commentary, so I will leave my mentions of her site as they are currently… part of a list of recommended but unaffiliated sites that are not mine, but may be of interest to my very small group of readers.

    And, in a final word of unsolicited advice, I’d suggest that you might be selling your own work short, Amy. You are not just scribbling in a little blog looking for some writing gigs that are dependent on a catchy name, for crying out loud. Your site is HUGE, with what appears to be streaming content from many sources all over the web. You’ve basically built an online natural family living magazine. As women in our culture, we are constantly told that we are “only” mothers, that our work and our concern are somehow insignificant little novelty acts in the Big Wide World of Men. (Ah, full circle, we’re back to my original comment rant!) Don’t minimize what you’ve built and don’t get sidelined by petty stuff. Market your site through advertising and affiliated content. Push for coverage. Send your bio and resume to media outlets. “Green Parenting” is going to be a huge topic for chat shows and lifestyle outlets…start thinking of yourself as THE source for natural parenting information online, and run with it.

    Now, if you don’t mind, I need to run off and blog about how I’m trying to do my stupid taxes, but I managed to dump a cup of hot tea all over my keyboard and my lap. This is going to require some Grade A comic relief, lest I go postal on the lady who STILL hasn’t paid for her Girl Scout cookies….

  • Freda

    I wonder if another yoga studio opened in NYC named Virayoga how supportive Elena Brower would be to the other studio (though there might be more of a legal issue in this case). I think Elaine could actually could have a little fun with this by using something like the FakePranaMama (or ViraMama) since this is supposed to be a humor site of sorts anyway. You site is so new that you are not going to lose any traffic over this, since you don’t have any traffic to begin with. Think creative as I didn’t think Prana Mama really described your suburban mom yoga/life as you wrote about it, all that much.

    I think most everybody is going to have an issue with someone using a moniker they have been using for awhile. I’m on the side of the RealPranaMama on this since the solution is so easy with a little creative thinking on Elaine’s part.

  • Joanne

    Freda… now that is a FANTASTIC IDEA!! Yes, Elaine, your wit should be read… but you can put a different spin on Prana Mama and then not offend THE prana mama. hmmmm…

    Maybe not fake prana mama… what about:
    WITTY prana mama
    Comic prana mama

    I don’t know. You don’t have to get away from the term, but maybe finding a compromise is the best thing to do here. Good Luck!!

    The blog, btw, is fantastic… so keep it going, somehow.

  • Thank you all for the suggestions, support and compliments – including you, Elaine! Peace…

  • It’s been a fascinating week in my yoga journey and practice, and I want to thank everyone for their energy they have shared. I feel even more strongly now about my central point in the original “suck it, bitches” comment.

    Each of us holds the exclusive power to define and measure who we are. There is nothing that another person can say or do that has the power to define you, to build you up or diminish you in any real way. The power to judge is in ourselves alone. We may strive for peace and stillness, but we are, at our cores, dynamic actors. We shape our own truth through what we choose to do and say, and in the energy we choose to pour in to our world.

    My blog has been a going concern since the first day YogaDork was kind enough to repost my comments. I have tried to share the very best of my own unique viewpoint there, and that positive energy has already flowed back to me in the form of some amazing and inspiring new friends. Should a new compelling turn of phrase emerge organically , it may very well find itself in the title. I’m not sure what it may be yet, however. So, if you feel more comfortable doing so, go ahead and think of “pranamama” as my placeholder until the next cool phrase pops up. In the end, the blog will be a space defined by what it is, rather than by what it is not.

    And, so, to summarize and bring it full circle: I’m not a vegetarian. I like a nice cocktail. I listen to loud music sometimes and swear sometimes and eat processed food sometimes. I don’t know much Sanskrit, I haven’t memorized my chakras or mudras or yamas. But, when I feel hurt and anger and frustration, I bring it to the mat. I release negativity in a cleansing breath. I choose to focus on the positive energy around me as I breathe in and then I choose to breathe out nothing but goodwill towards all, even when it’s not particularly easy. Then, I find myself ready to stand in Mountain Pose and face the worst of it. Even the laundry. And, if you could see the pile I’ve got working here, you’d be pretty damned impressed. Nothing “inauthentic” could make me at peace with this, I assure you.

    And now, I think it is time to release this here, before poor YogaDork gets an excess bandwidth surcharge!

    Namaste.

  • admin

    Thanks so much Elaine and to all of you who’ve shared your thoughts and/or grievances – that’s what it’s for! bandwidth schmandwidth, bring it on.
    Looking forward to more great conversations, debates, confessions and revelations on YD.
    All your prana is welcome here :)

  • Elaine – I’d love to offer to purchase the pranamama domains from you, if you decide to go with another name. Should’ve done it long ago – guess this has been a lesson for me. Let me know!

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