These past couple of days my mother-heart stretched again some more. It seems this is and will be a lifelong stretch. What struck me today is how visceral it is above all else. My mind was calm. My emotions too. What was in movement, where I was noticing the stretching happening, was at the layer of sensation in my body, literally as if cells were being asked to make room for more, to release, to grow my trust in this Life, to love and to let go.
And now throughout the day as my daughter wanders off into the high mountains for four days with a 40lb backpack, a new circle of friends and an extraordinary teacher as part of her wilderness school experience, it is my body that keeps sensing into her adventure… that holds her both close and far, regardless of whether my actual thoughts are with her or not. I focus on what lies before me, I enjoy the day, and simultaneously I sense expansion off into that wilderness, with her, the heart-cell-awareness ongoing.
Similarly, when she went on her first 10-day trip earlier this summer, flying on her own away from home across the great continent of Canada to stay with her aunt’s family... That day of travel, aware of her flight across plains, hills and mountains to the city of Montreal, my heart felt stretched like an accordion. It wasn’t unpleasant, although it took a bit of getting used to. My accordion-heart stayed that way for 10 days, spread over the continent before it folded back together as she neared home and walked in the door with a big grin on her face. I remember thinking of all the accordion-hearts stretched across the globe at any moment in time… threads of care, of prayer, of connection.
I watch this visceral stretching today and note with wonder the glimpse, embodied, of how interconnected we all truly are. We may notice it in much deeper fullness and clarity with loved ones, especially with our children. But doesn’t it just point to what is there under the surface anyways, all ways?Think of those days when you cannot place sadness due to your own personal life, but you feel it seeping in under your skin, passing through, perhaps on behalf of others? You shed tears and they may be yours or they may belong to someone you will never meet.
Or the times you look at a view, or hug a friend, and sense that you are doing so for one departed from their body - lending him or her your eyes, your arms for a moment?
Or that delightful experience when you witness someone dancing or singing or doing something you would have loved to do more of, had you more time, a few parallel lives to dedicate to the many loves of this living… and then you see a friend or someone you don’t even know, doing just that and doing it so well and so beautifully and something in you relaxes, because even if it is not you doing it, it is happening, that movement, that song, that stroke of paint on canvas is happening.
These and other moments give us insights into the transpersonal nature of our humanity. The ways we are both in ourselves and beyond ourselves. We are distinct, unique, and we are undeniably connected and interwoven.
This is where my body-heart-stretch leads me today in my experience, reflections and awareness-coasting every once in a while over the mountains as I love my girl and wish her well, so well.
Sending love to all the mother-hearts and father-hearts and caring-hearts that weave threads of care and love across the planet. May those who are truly alone today, be touched by these threads, for they belong to all of us.
If you would like to join me and a wonderful, international group of parents as we explore and practice this comprehensive and underlying approach to parenting, I invite you to “Parenting as a Spiritual Practice“ - an 8-week online course that runs Oct. 23 - Dec. 18, 2017.
This course is designed to bring to life the full potential of parenthood: a transformative vessel for evolving yourself, your child, and the future. During these eight weeks I offer you perspectives, practices, discernment and insight that will help you discover an unshakeable ease and delight amidst the inevitable ups, downs and doubts of parenting.www.integralparenting.com