My family surprised me with a trip indoor skydiving. I was beyond excited. Even sweet little Addison was pumped. We bought a pack of flights which meant we all got to fly multiple times. The first time through you get what Addison calls "nerve cited " Excited, but nervous because you don't know what to expect. Then you step into that tube, the intense air hits you, you body becomes weightless and up you go. Each flight lasts 90 seconds and after the first one is over you are just on a cloud. Then you have the option on your additional flights to fly high. If you choose to fly high they take you up 40 feet in the tube and fly you all around.
Hubby and I flew high on our second turn and it was magical. Addison played it safe and stayed low on fly number two. Then on her third flight she decided to go high. Out of nowhere while she waited for her 3rd turn (an experienced flier at this point) She got overcome by fear.
She sat there frozen, panic in her voice "I can't do this" "oh my god" . She went from joyous and free to terrified in an instant. Instead of talking her out of the fear, with encouragement like "don't be scared" "you'll be fine" "it's so fun" "you can do it", I sat by her side and held space for her. I noticed immediately that she had a strategy. She kept acknowledging how she was feeling out loud and breathing really deeply (in her cute 8 year old over exaggerated way). It was remarkable because it is the essence of what is tough in many spiritual paths as the way to make it through adversity. In my #meditation studies there is a big emphasis on acknowledging what you are feeling, thinking and then returning to your breath.
Here Addison was calling on an intuitive wisdom that normally gets covered over when I try to "parent her" through something. She didn't need my coaching, intuitively her heart knew the way out of the fear. It wasn't around it or under it. It was through it.
She got afraid, we all do, and no one stepped in to say don't be afraid. No one tried to get her to ignore it or pretend it wasn't there, which is typically as adults what we have been conditioned to do.
Out of the wisdom of her 8 year old soul came the intuition to do what I have spent a decade learning to do myself. Acknowledge it and breathe.
After some time talking through how she was feeling out loud to herself and breathing deeply she got up and jumped into that tube and up she flew. 40 feet in the air. It was a remarkable thing to watch. Not the skydiving part, but the way she came up against fear, acknowledged it, breathed through it and ultimately conquered it!!!!! #breathe