My mom cries at the drop of a hat. Really, she cries at everything. Commercials, songs on the radio, a sweet story about my five-year-old niece, looking at old photographs, you name it. Her nickname in the family is “The Old Waterworks.” It used to drive me bonkers. Like, Mom, seriously?
When I was younger, I was perpetually disengaged and unaffected. I wore callousness like a badge. Talk about my feelings? Scoff. (Can you see my teenage eyes rolling?)
But really, this was a coping strategy.
There were many big, difficult feelings clanging around inside me that I didn’t know how to deal with, and avoidance was a way of not feeling. There wasn’t a magical day in which I decided, okay, now I’m going to let myself feel my feelings. But somehow, slowly and over time, my heart started to soften.
I blame all the yoga.
It opened me, melted me, unfurled all those tightly wound parts. It’s still working on me, and my hardened, closed-off parts are slowly letting go. My feelings live a little closer to the surface these days, and my edges are more permeable, so while I’m not as weepy as my mama, I am much more prone to tears.
If it’s making you squirm a little to read about all this, I feel you. Some part inside me too still resists this, still wants to keep the walls up, still sees how weird and vulnerable it is to be open in this way. But some other part of me (and of you, I bet) knows that this life, the sharing life, the open life, and yes, the crying life, is my life, and yours.
IT IS LIFE. And the rest is just hiding out and hoping that life won’t find us.
So if you’ve been thinking about signing up for coaching with me, but hesitate because you’re scared that you might cry, well, you might. And if you’re worried because you’re “not a sharer” and you think I’ll ask you to talk about your feelings, I definitely will. I’ll bring tissues.
Don’t get the wrong idea, though, the point of this work isn’t to make you deal with all your past trauma and wallow in your sadness and shame. (I’m not qualified to deal with that, but I can recommend a great therapist!)
Coaching asks you to look closely yourself and your life, your dreams and desires. You’ll address the ways your thoughts and habits get in the way of you living your best life. This is difficult work; I can’t pretend that it’s not. But it’s vitally important work, and I know you’re up for the task.