Knowing What to Do
Ever have those moments when you come face to face with some sort of challenge, discomfort, pain... and feel at a loss for what to do?
I know I have! Whether it's a moment of my own discomfort - unpleasant emotions, thoughts, bodily aches and pains - or the witnessing of another's...
To be in the midst of suffering, feeling the desire to fix, to make different or better can be a great challenge.
A few weeks back my brother-in-law sent me the images above. Pictures of my nephews - brothers, in the midst of one of these moments. Together they'd been sitting, talking, eating dinner when all of the sudden Harper (on the left), takes a bite, mistakenly chomping down on his tongue with force, causing it to bleed. In an instant things shifted from calm to storm as the pain moved through him, tearful cries making way.
We've all been there - faced with those instantaneous moments of challenge, sudden pain, circumstances changed.
In the same instant, upon hearing the cues, Marshall (on the right), stands, turns to his brother and placing his hands & offering gentle touch & tapping ~ the BodyTalk Brain Integration (aka Cortices) Technique.
When I received these pictures, shortly after the actual event - I was touched, not just because I know the beneficial impacts of this healing technique - but because I saw the true power in knowing what to do.
I saw in this instant, a child's activation of compassion & connection - a moment of truly showing up to another. I saw the importance of practicing, of having "go-to" tools on hand (in this case quite literally), and how this influences our ability to respond in those moments when
heightened emotion meet heightened need.
That night at the table, Marshall witnessed the pain of his brother, yet instead of sitting there feeling bad, stopped by his own uncertain thoughts - he activated the one thing he knew how to do. He applied a salve, an offer of acknowledgement, compassion, (and in this instance- gentle touch).
Did his "intervention" take the literal pain away, making it easier for the injured tongue to receive its next bite?
Hmmm... perhaps to some degree, but I won't try to fool you, it certainly did not offer instant magic, reversing the events of time. The injury still occurred and the tissues & energies of the bodymind will still need to go through their process to thoroughly heal.
his is a technique both boys have now seen and experienced several times, often applied in the face of all types of discomfort and pain. In its simplest description, it's a gentle application of acknowledgement, attention, presence and love that moves beyond the surface and into the energies of the body inviting ones whole-being to open up and pay attention - activating necessary channels for circulation, for healing. (Stay tuned, I'll be sending you a demo of the technique in the coming week!)
For now, let's take a moment to consider OUR practiced "go to's" for knowing what to do, as we meet the events of our lives or sit with those of another...
Of course there is the obvious step:
If it's a life threatening emergency - always call 911
And in these other moments - a bit tongue, a grieving heart, fear, worry, anger or other strong situation - perhaps we're facing the aging of self or a loved one, lifetransitions that sometimes bring completely new realities - it is here that we tread lightly while taking care not to ignore.
It is here that the knowing what to do can include: pausing, sitting in stillness, perhaps allowing the dust to settle until regaining the ability 'see' a little more clearly again. Taking a moment to reaching out through text or phone to a resource, loved one or friend. It is here that merely acknowledging,naming our experience: uncertainty or discomfort, confusion, pain - opens space for truth, honesty, and deep rooted healing to begin.
May we trust in the "not-knowing" and the pause that it brings; knowing the acknowledgement, witnessing and presence - though not always easy to rest in, are often exactly enough.