For an explanation of this donate button, click here.
How about this: D R E A M.
Denial – that it’s me stopping me from achieving what I want. Resistance – I suspect it might be me but bloody hell. Emotion, tons of it, more bloody hell but with real vooma power. Acceptance – fine, I get it, okay. Mammma Mia! So this is what it feels like, hallelujah!
Cute, I know.
Yesterday I realized, vocal exercises have become routine! Small thing maybe, in the grander scheme of things, but giant step for me. V. spiritual as it happens. When I first reconnected with my voice – about 6 years ago – it had no quality. Plus, all the fear that had stopped me singing when I was a kid burst into Technicolor with sensurround. You’re an idiot; you can’t sing; oh please, you’re not cool enough; you’re pathetic; buzz off and die – nobody wants you around; you’re a nuisance; you’re making their lives a nightmare; you’re hurting them.
I didn’t know that stuff was alive in me until I tried to sing seriously. Vocal exercises were a nightmare. Voice would just shut down as Dementors flocked to the party. Some party. My fears were too strong, couldn’t get my voice to work, so I let myself back off from the dream of reconnecting with it and focused on reconnecting with the part of me that believed I was worthless and couldn’t sing. Lethal combination!
I think about a child who loves doing, say, cartwheels and is good at them, but is being bullied in the playground, consistently. If nobody comes to her rescue, she stops doing the cartwheels and thinks there’s something wrong with the way she does them. Doesn’t think there’s something wrong with the bully.
She’ll lose confidence, and the cartwheels won’t be so good any more, so she’ll have proof that the bullies are right. She’ll associate cartwheels with being punished, and she’ll know she deserves it, because she’s not good enough.
It’s no use saying to the child “oh just go back out there and do those cartwheels”. She can’t. She needs the recognition of it from you. You have to let her tell you what it’s like for her, and cry and be angry if that’s what she needs to do. You have to hold her and listen to her fears and show her you understand. You have to honor her feelings and her experience and give her so much love that your love counteracts what the bullies did. So that she knows she’s got somebody to turn to in future if it happens again.
You also have to tell her there are other playgrounds with children who don’t need to be bullies. If that’s too scary for her, you tell her it’s fine, we’ll do that later. Then you have to address the bullies, tell them they can’t play with her any more. You explain to her what bullies are.
All of this tells her there’s nothing wrong with her. Then you say should we try those cartwheels again? If she says yes, you let her do it her way. You encourage, applaud, celebrate her. Help her regain the joy, the pleasure. If you don’t do this, she doesn’t get over her fears. Ever. You can kiss those beautiful, confident cartwheels goodbye and she can kiss her dreams goodbye.
The good news is, it’s never too late. I’ve been getting that love stuff in real time and with real people, and now I’m back doing musical cartwheels, and enjoying them, keeping my balance. Still at home, still where it’s safe, still a little tentative, but the joy, the pleasure? They’re back, and they’re mine oh mine sweet mine.
Reconnection doesn’t all happen it once, it happens in stages, one very small step at a time. That’s fine by me. Everything is the way it should be.