A few weeks ago I wrote this post and sat on it as I absorbed and meditated on the depth of its effect. This experience has had me show up more raw and real than I could have ever imagined. It also happened before my Greatlife Retreat where I held transformational space for 23 sentient beings. Without this experience I may not have been who I was or created the container of authentic sharing that transpired into a weekend of bliss.
This just happened, so here I am fresh in the rawness of life, tears still in my eyes with salty dry cheeks. Let me just preface this with the fact that I am a silent sufferer, I shed more happy tears than sad, but sometimes I know a cry is all that is going to work, by myself of course.
It’s been one of those days, shit, it’s been one of those weeks. Lots of work deadlines, events, track meets, swimming lessons, music lessons, spouse working overtime, feeling like a single parent, and questioning if I am in peri-menopause, drinking too much wine, or just needing more sleep. Tonight though, all hell broke loose when my daughter lost her prized Pokeman card, the favourite with fairy magic. You all know the feeling, the one when you are over-attached to a possession that you know is gone, well imagine those emotions as an eight year old, remember she does not have full frontal lobe development yet. I stayed calm, assisted in the hunt, the retracing, the logical management of anxiety. Then I remembered I am the adult in this situation and there are a few teachable moments occurring here, so I went into my rant about not attaching to that which is outside of ourselves, not crying over things, and there is a bigger lesson in all of this.
Then, I maneuvered into solutions like, “you can trade or we can buy a new set”. Saying anything to get her to brush her teeth and go to bed. With lots of calm discussion she finally settled, sorted herself out, worked through the loss then asked to be cuddled. Once in bed, she was still whimpering and thanking me for helping her. I had already gone into my own world and had started to cry myself, I had just had enough, a long day, exhaustion, drama over Pokeman cards and an 15 minutes of hearing my child screaming had put me over the edge.
My sweet girl asked, “Mom, are you crying?”
I replied, “Yes honey, mommy is just done, it’s been a hard day, I am tired, overwhelmed and things feel really hard right now!”
Her response was not at all what I expected, she hugged me hard and said, “This is awesome, this just turned into the best day ever!” and her tears turned to laughter.
Um, ok, now I have gone from stressed to not knowing what the hell is going on, “What do you mean?”
“Mom, I have never seen you cry before, I thought you only happy cried, but you are really upset, this means you are just like me, my crying is normal, everyone cries, mom, you are human?”
How is it that my child had never seen me break down? In the daily process of our lives and the management of her emotions, I had not been showing her mine. She hears my constant cuing, get dressed, brush your teach, get in the tub, dinners ready, … But I was saving all the raw and real for my moments of solitudes. That is what I thought was appropriate. I did not want to burden her with adult responsibility, but a small taste of reality and the humaneness that exists within her mother was exactly what we both craved. We went deep and showed each other who we are, her guidance leading me deeper to my raw edge.
What if we remembered who we are at that deep core level?
What if we expressed more of what is really going on for us?
What if we admitted we have trouble trusting ourselves?
What if we got so honest with ourselves and each other that it cracked open the entire world with a tsunami of compassion? What if we worked out our own shit so we could take the shield off our heart, lay down the sword in front of our soul and connect so humanely that the nudity of our inner being was more liberating than the mask covering our entire body?
How about we all get a little more raw, naked and real with each other. I would love to say to you .. “This is the best day ever, you are human, and I feel exactly the same as you do sometimes!”
Oh, and guess what? Daddy came home from work and said, “She took one Pokeman card to school this week, check her bag!” Sure enough, there it was. Wow, interesting that we manifested this beautiful opportunity for connection and still had the day saved by super hero dad. The universe perfectly unfolding to bloom our hearts, grow our vulnerability and return us to ourselves. My daughter witnessing me as a human, with weakness and vulnerability may be the growth lesson I was seeking more than she was. If she can take it, so can the rest of the world.