Tender is the name

Hello there,

Welcome to Spring Equinox 2022, where we find (nearly) an equal length in day and night everywhere in the world. In other words, we’ve officially arrived in Spring 2022! Are you noticing any difference around you? Tender young shoots emerge, and for some plants, blooming flowers are a treat. Rainfall seems a tad more frequent, while sunshine may feel stronger.  

Spring invites us to contemplate areas of new growth or beginnings in our lives that we want to take extra care of as the wintry energy melts away, exposing parts that might be vulnerable.

Consider perhaps:
A new personal or professional project that you might be seeding in your heart or nurturing, that you might not be ready to share with the world yet;
A new relationship that might require delicate care or attention;
Or a life transition whose changes you are still coping with.

For me, tender is the word as I enter into spring. There’s a poem/written string of words that I’d like to share with you, surmising little moments that happened for me over the past few weeks, as well as inspiration from the folks I’ve been journeying with in my body-based healing sessions.  

Here’s another story of witnessing tenderness in one of my kids’ yoga classes. There was a 9-year-old student who participated gleefully. She was fully present until she was (abruptly) not. In the last 10 minutes, she suddenly went awfully quiet — picking at her nails, gaze cast downwards, and ignoring my calls to rejoin the group. During the quiet rest at the end, she ran and hid under another mat altogether. I noticed my emotions reacting to her behaviour: part rising anger, part worry, and part curiosity. 

I approached her after class, intentionally keeping my anger at bay and choosing instead, to let my worry and curiosity show. She hesitated for a long time before sharing. Her close friend was visibly upset and jealous because she played with another kid in class. Her friend then bluntly told her that they were not friends anymore (just one of the many things that happen during a kids’ yoga class!) It may seem like a small issue to us adults, but friendship changes are hard for our children. We explored the emotions that came up for her. She eventually acknowledged, “I’m feeling really sad and disappointed because she is such a good friend (to me). She even made me this friendship bracelet. I cannot believe she would throw this friendship away because I made another friend! Why can’t I have one more friend?” 

At that moment, this image from Brené Brown’s Atlas of the Heart came to mind. I thanked her for sharing her feelings so courageously and reflected that both of them must care for this friendship very much — both the friendship bracelet and her big emotion of disappointment are fruits of this deep care for each other. She silently nodded. We sat quietly for a while. She agreed to my invitation that she would try to speak with her friend and not give up on the friendship just yet. When I met her again several days later, she was full of smiles. They reconciled. 

What inner sensations, emotions, or imagery do you notice as you enter into spring? Wherever you are, I invite you to take a closer look, bring a softer gaze, as you witness the tenderness that may accompany your upcoming season of budding growth. 
May there be ease x