We have a negative bias - from our ancient survival instincts. We understand this thanks to neuroscience. It permeates everything in our lives, often in subtle ways. But it doesn't need to be like this, we can change these patterns, and we can do things differently. We are way more powerful and resilient than we have been conditioned to believe.
Yesterday, I ran into a friend at yoga who's husband had recently died. I had been meaning to get in touch with her but didn't want to interfere with her 'process' what ever that might be. But I did want her to know I was available to support her journey.
When I saw her, she was smiling and engaged in conversation, not the typical vision of someone in mourning. When we sat down next to one another on our mats, she looked at me with a sparkle in her eyes which told me she is OK.
She is OK--in fact she is fabulous. She always has been, and always will be. And she knows this.
This does not mean she loved her husband any less than someone who might have fallen apart in a similar situation. Neither is this a judgement on someone reacting in a different way. There are many ways--and this is my point. My friend has been doing a ton of 'the inner work' and has a complete set of tools to navigate challenges like this. She is doing it her way.
Is she grieving the loss of her husband? Yes. Is she also positive about the future? Yes. These seeming opposites appear to live in harmony within this wonderful woman. It is not that she is repressing or not able to come to grips with what has transpired, nor does it mean she will never have a melt-down. It is that she is so connected to her heart and her spirit that she can be deeply engaged with all of life, and can 'hold space' for grief without her 'house' crashing down. She can hold grace, grief and fabulous all in the same container.
In our yoga class, we were asked to set an intention. My friend inspired me to consider this: What if I set the intention that, 'I can be OK with being OK'. Most often we are focused on being OK with not being OK. But when do we consider being OK (or fabulous) amidst a death of a loved one, amidst a diagnosis, amidst the chaos of life? What if we were able to hold space for both energies and emotions at the same time? What if we were open to all of the possibilities that exist in each moment? What if we were to step outside the box and into our unlimited selves?