The Empatharian position for “communicating” looks like “making a stand”. You lift one arm and with soft fist (imagine holding a baby bird in your hand) facing up, above your head, while the other arm circles down at the belly, with soft fist facing down. There is a movement as the arms alternate, like beating a drum, wrists straight, and top arm moves to top of head,helping you stand tall. Then you switch arms so the other arm is now on top helping you stand tall, soft fist up, above your head; other arm switches down to belly position, soft fist facing down.
You hold on to your sacred values, your dear ones, in your soft fist- And as you switch your arms, you will remember: communication is a two way process, listening/receiving and then making a stand, making your statement. Listening and looking at what is, Seeing the the world, responding with love, kindness and firmness.
As we sit in our homes on quarantine lockdown, this pandemic is isolating us from our neighbors, from our families. And some families are being tragically torn apart by this. Some families are finding new coping mechanisms while co-habiting with children and teens all day and all night.
Sometimes, it’s so hard to hear the children bickering, especially when you need to just have a bit of quiet to get “something” done… yelling for quiet upsets everyone.
How about changing it up? Do a mime about it, like Marcel Marceau, the famous mime artist. You can use a flour mixture to make your faces white, perhaps, adding a bit of cold cream to the flour. Just for fun, put on a hat that’s a bit silly. Humor helps us when we have too much to say with words, worlds can collide and laughter is the charming confetti that explodes. Make a game of cleaning up the mess with unusual brooms…
Make a mime of communicating- and let them make a mime back. Exaggerate a bit, and let them know how you are feeling… because you need quiet, and what you’d really like to have happen, in the best of worlds. A request is heard and responded to, without defensiveness or aggression, and you may keep on the conversation, as long as you keep out the blame and shame abusers, who will shut down the conversation.
Children crave imagination and creativity. We all do, really. Do you remember a time that you and your parents had difficult times, and you had to endure with imagination and grace? Tell me the story! I love stories. We all do, really.
The attraction to TV and films is because it gives us a chance to jump into our imagination in a story. Sometimes it becomes an addiction to the excitement and adrenaline the story incites in us. It’s an escape from our everyday reality, and it’s great. Books are more beneficial because more of your imagination is required to picture the story that the words are giving you. Reading aloud to children of any age, all the way through older adults and great grandparents, is a wonderful activity for a family. Sometimes you can take turns reading, but there’s a wonder to having someone else read to you… and you can stop and discuss a difficult bit.
Our world is all about communicating these days: social media communicating can sometimes be a work of imagination, not authentic to who we are, rather attempting to meet other’s expectations, or what we perceive as others’ expectations.
The corona virus pandemic has brought much positive, authentic communication to the internet, as we share our vulnerabilities, our hopes, our dreams as well as Our fear, anxiety, our depression, our anger. These emotions are hard to process, but talking helps, and moving helps, expression of any positive kind: art-making, letter-writing, mask-making. Dancing is another great way to move out your emotions so that our bodies are not holding them in.
Love is the Statement you make, putting boundaries on your children’s activity, keeping them home and away from their friends. Love is the statement you make when you all go outside into nature, sharing the wonderment of our beautiful natural world, the simple pleasure of planting a seed. And keeping 6 feet away from other people, wearing masks if you need to go to a store.
The Urban Dictionary has two definitions of “Angel” which I’m excerpting:
1. “ A protective soul with an urgency to watch over what is hers. A very understanding, powerful, yet gentle human being.”
2. “A dateable guy who knows a lot about a girl ..he’s also caring and sweet, also he is an extra person with a lot of creativity and he’s passionate on what he does …”
A “Love Angel” is a person who brings love to others, as a knowing, caring, sweet, creative, and protective soul, passionately understanding, powerful, and yet gentle and sweet.
We are all Love Angels, communicating, making a stand, and listening to one another… we will get through this, with kindness, grace, and laughter!