I’m not gonna lie – I’ve been using the same intention in all of my Forrest classes this week. Because it rings so incredibly true to me. And because it rings so true, I thought I’d share it here – hopefully it’ll ring true for someone out there too. But first, I have two stories to share…
My ex, “M”, died three years ago. That was the event that sent me on my path and eventually my turn to Forrest Yoga. His death shook me to the core in ways that most people will never be shaken. I still have moments when I’m not sure how I came through the other side but I’m ever so happy I am (read: it’s a journey and I’m still on it).
I also listened to Brene Brown’s audiobook on worthiness last week and her four points of empathy sit with me – perspective (1) with no judgement (2) communicated (3) in an area where another person holds space for you (4). That holding space is so much bigger than I think anyone will ever know or even ever realize.
Holding space can be a scary concept. It means that whatever transpires, everyone is safe; everyone is looked after; and everyone has a place to release. I’ve been trying to figure out why holding space was so important to me and it hit me last night – because I had space held for me.
When “M” died, there were some loose ends to tie up, it took longer than I thought it should. But his family trusted me with his ashes. While he never said where he wanted to be scattered, I made some guesses, also known as throwing some darts. And then one night, while going through photos, it came to me. And felt so right. His ashes were scattered on a mountain (he loved to ski) overlooking an ocean (he loved the beach). After scattering his ashes, I joined my sister “T” on a bench overlooking the ocean at the top of the mountain.
And possibly without knowing what she was doing, or possibly with full knowledge, she held my space. We sat in silence. In Beauty. We both cried. We both laughed. And I felt safe. That’s what holding space is.
We hold space for others when the other person is so broken, so damaged they can’t hold it for them self. We hold space because at some point, we may need space held for us. But mostly, we hold space because we’re all human. And giving another person the ability to let their shields down and to “just be” may be the greatest gift you can give another.
During a yoga practice, we often times unknowingly hold space for ourself. But I’ve been asking my classes to hold space for each other. Because human connection is what will heal and strengthen us. Because human connection is the best thing we can give to another.
*side note – while I’ve thanked “T” previously, I’m taking the chance here and now to say it again. Those moments of silence on the bench were the MOST AMAZING moments anyone could have given me. And should you ever need space held, I would be honored and humbled to hold it for you.