I spend a lot of time talking about the importance of feeling your feelings. I have been actively practicing holding space for myself to feel my feelings for at least 15 years now, and there are days where the task is still very daunting, even for me.
There are days when I have so much inside, so close to the surface, that I feel acutely agitated, restless, …downright miserable…and all I want to do is distract myself. Like just this very morning, actually. I awoke today, feeling so heavy. This feeling had grown over the last few days, but I had been too busy, and also too sick, to turn my attention to it. I can now see that those suppressed emotional feelings (and some pretty intense full-moon energy) were what had caused my upset tummy and headache, but I couldn’t move much past my acute awareness of the misery of those physical feelings. I knew that I would get to the root of them, I just needed a little space, and Saturday morning is always the perfect time for a feeling-the-feelings date with myself!
But this morning ohhhh I did not want to do it! I practically begged my partner to take me to the mall – and I hate the mall! I wanted to forget about this discomfort as quickly as I could. But luckily for me, he knows me better than to let me talk him into a mall trip, and so I found myself in my meditation room, steadying myself to give space to letting whatever was stuck inside move. E-motions are a terrible beast when they are stuck, but when in motion, ahhh....the relief!
Within 5 minutes of my routine the lock shattered and things were moving. The clamp around my heart tightened and then sprung open, as giant tears of grief and despair flooded through. I moaned, and groaned, and cried. I shook and twisted and collapsed. And cried some more. A few minutes later it had passed, and by the end of my 23 minute routine I was not only feeling light and relieved, but deeply peaceful again. My body was relaxed, my feet were connected to the earth, and my head and heart were clear.
This particular release was about the earth, and what I had read in the news and heard from friends the last few days about the climate change related disasters happening around the world. Each story had made its way into my heart, and was sitting there so heavily. The release doesn’t mean that these stories are “ok” and that I now no longer care about them, not at all, but I no longer feel as if I am carrying the weight of the disasters all on my own. Once I released my grief, and reconnected to the earth, the peace that came in did so with the understanding that just for right now, I am still alive, so is my family, and so is so much on this beautiful planet. Just for right now, there is still so much I don’t understand, and so much that is possible, and so many amazing things happening everywhere. All I have to do is look out my window, and there it is – life…so much life.
None of that makes climate change “ok” but it does give me somewhere to rest. Islands of hope in a sea of despair or vice versa? I’m not sure, and it probably changes depending on the day, but either way there is still ground under my feet and it doesn’t serve anyone if I jump into the water and completely drown.
Suggested practice for feeling your feelings: