Snow Angels - January 14, 2015
One of my dear friends, Kayte, is the proud mama of four fabulous, four-legged “kids.” They are Charlie’s playmates and when we manage a “play-date,” they enjoy lots of running and playing with wild abandon.
Last Saturday was a beautiful, crisp winter day which felt balmy at 37 degrees after the sub-zero arctic temps we have been plagued with for the past month. With good fortune smiling upon us that day, Kayte and I were able to contrive a hike and took the “kids” along for a nice run. We ended up hiking and having sacred girlfriend time for six miles. Charlie and Tara, part Border Collie and primary running partner, probably ran 12 miles. Needless to say, they were both tuckered out and sleeping soundly at the end of the day.
In the middle of the hike, Tara demonstrated one of her heart’s desires. She absolutely loves to lie on her back in the snow and rub and rub and rub. The best part of this process is watching her. She is in total bliss while making these snow angels; totally experiencing her heart’s desire.
Kayte shared with me that Tess, who is part collie, loves to slide downhill on the snow, head first on her back. Now Kayte hates it when Tess does this stunt because she is afraid that Tess will smack her head into a rock or hurt her neck in some way. A very logical and reasonable concern. But Tess has discovered incredible joy in this experience and will find any chance to have her fun despite Kayte’s objections (such a teenager).
After hearing Kayte’s fears, I wondered if that is one way that the heart’s desire starts to get shut down? “No, you don’t want to do that. It’s too dangerous.” Or “No, that’s not right for you, do it this way.” How many of these messages can a person endure before succumbing to family, friends, or society’s pressure and ultimately change in a way that really does not suit the individual? How much responsible, practical, pragmatic behavior is adopted at the expense of joy, experiencing the richness of life, and being true to self?
The should’s and should not’s of life tend to have a very negative impact. Should is a guilt-inducing word that sucks the joy out of life. “I should pay the electric bill.” Of course, it is the responsible thing to do. But I have freedom and choice. I can choose to pay a bill, or not. The consequence of not paying the electric bill is the lights will be turned off. Am I okay with that? If I don’t want the lights turned off, then I pay the bill. But it is my choice, and when I choose to do something because it is what I want, then there is a greater sense of power and joy in life. I want lights and heat, so I choose to pay the bill.
Ever witness a toddler carry a tray with a glass of water on it? Typically the tray is slightly tipped increasing the odds the water will be spilled. The tendency for the worried/anxious adult is to “help” or “correct” the child, telling them they cannot tip the tray. There is a lack of trust in the child’s ability to manage the situation. The child gives the adult a look of disbelief, but because the adult is “God” in the child’s world, they naturally believe the adult and become programmed to carry a tray in a specific manner. But if the adult had left the child alone, one of two things would have happened: The child would have successfully carried the tray slightly tipped and delivered the water without incident; or the water would have spilled, and the child would have a learning experience (and learned how to clean up the mess with help from the adult).
I agree that it is the parent’s or adult’s responsibility to help keep children safe (two or four-legged kids). But sometimes we intervene too quickly robbing the child of meaningful learning experiences. There is prevention, and then there is overprotective. A fine line, I agree. But in the meantime, the messages of the “shoulds” start to kill belief in self, which seriously impacts the heart’s desire. I often tell people to stop “shoulding” on themselves.
It is possible to reverse these old messages and break through to hear your heart’s voice. For me, watching Charlie, Tess, and Tara is inspirational. It fills my whole being with joy and lights up my soul. As a result, I play more, write this blog, and create more opportunities for joyfulness. I notice more of the positive and beauty in the world and work to live and celebrate the moment.
To start your process, ask yourself and contemplate:
• Where can you let go of the “should’s” in life to allow for more choice and freedom?
• How can you create or notice moments of joy in your daily life?
© 2013-2019 Kelly Marker, Charlie’s Wisdom All Rights Reserved