The answers you seek aren’t in your feed
We talked through that scene over and over.
The plane crashing through the doors of the hanger, John Travolta in black hunting down Nicolas Cage in red, bullets flying everywhere.
Miss Two had seen some of the 90s movie Face/Off accidentally, and told me it was “scary”, yet still she asked to watch it again. Instead we talked about it as nauseam, role played, and I cuddled her as we went through it for the fifteenth time.
When we see or experience something at odds with our reality we want to understand it.
This is why she role plays falling on concrete, clutching her now-healed knees repeatedly, even though it hurts.
This is why children who stumble across or are exposed to porn often go looking for it again, even if they feel grossed out or confused by it.
This is why adults who feel uncertain about the future look to daily media briefs for solid information, then turn to far less reputable data sources when that solid information is missing.
Our brains are wired to seek more data to put pieces together and move beyond confusion.
When we are held emotionally as we process what has happened, receiving the information we need to put the pieces together, we integrate the left (logical and lists) and right (feeling and flow) sides of our brain.
When this is achieved, we can complete the emotion/information loop and return to our “baseline” or “default” state, ideally of equilibrium.
Our sympathetic nervous system that triggers our fight/flight responses can switch off, and we can find peace as our parasympathetic “chill out” systems return to the forefront.
This is how it works in parenting our kids, and getting through this weird old time as adults too.
If I’d told Miss Two to snap out of it after seeing that movie scene and “just forget about it”, her brain and nervous system can’t complete the loop and she stays on edge, in a small or big way, indefinitely.
If I tell myself to snap out of it after seeing snippets of the 11am briefing, my brain and nervous system can’t complete the loop either.
What is tricky as adults in the current situation is that we can’t come to a complete resolution because we don’t know what the future holds. But if you think about it...we never really know how the future will play out anyway!
So what can we do to hold ourselves right now, just like we might hold a child that’s seen scary or confusing things they shouldn’t have?
We listen to our own feelings and treat our worries, fears and tears as valid, even if they seem ridiculous.
We do this as often as they crop up (given current circumstances, that might be daily, especially if some of your old childhood “loops” were left incomplete).
We check in to see if we are safe, right now, in our immediate surroundings, and exhale deeply, soften our bellies relax our neck and shoulders.
We allow ourselves to receive support and nourishment, whether that be our children holding our hands or the sun on our backs.
We take information from people who have a much better grasp of the situation and the science than politicians whose usual election campaign strategies are based on fear and making their opponents wrong.
We try others’ opinions on for size so we can experience that everyone is doing their best given what they believe to be true, and remember what compassion for others feels like.
We use our imaginary emotional mirror to reflect that compassion back on ourselves, and remember that although this is a crazy new world, we are miraculous, incredible, intelligent, ancient, whole-soul-living-a-human-experience beings.
We can see it in our kids from birth.
We know how they thrive when we treat them accordingly, with respect for all they are and feel.
We all deserve that same grace, that same compassion, that same love.
The answers you seek aren’t in your feed.
Your own light is the one you’re looking for.
Feel the day’s feelings first...
Then go bask in it.
#BeLove #SelfCompassion #EndSermon
[ID: Anna, a fair skinned woman with shoulder-length once-was-blonde-now-very regrow this-affected hair is in the foreground, wearing a check-pattern shirt. The background is blurry but you can just make out the standard daily state press conference on the screen.]
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