by Dani Trudeau
I have always preferred ground floor flats and houses. Something about not feeling suspended makes me feel more grounded in myself. I need my feet spread out, my hands open and earth not far beneath me.
Every morning I come down to the kitchen and I touch the counter. When the kitchen has been left clean and the surfaces cleared (perhaps not as often as I would like), I will run my hand across the concrete counter and down the curved edges. It is super satisfying and relaxing to me for some reason.
What I am trying to say is that I like to feel things out. Often when I cannot make a decision about something, I will decide on one option and then check in with my body to see how that decision feels. My body is faster than my brain and I trust the instant reaction of it. Many years of somatic work has taught me that first-person observation of the soma is immediately factual.
But feeling things out right now is hard. I can feel my body tense up and my stomach twist when I am asked what does the future look like. I don’t know. If anything, this unmapped world of the future is insisting that we remain in the present. At least, that is how I am trying to cope with the upheaval of everything.
However you are coping with the current situation, one thing that is true for everyone is that there has been a lot of change. According to the folk at MindTools, change can be difficult because it can challenge how we think, how we work, the quality of our relationships, and even our physical security or sense of identity. We usually react to change in four stages:
- Shock and disorientation.
- Anger and other emotional responses.
- Coming to terms with the “new normal.”
- Acceptance and moving forward.
As with most things, no doubt these stages are not always in sequence and can get repeated but there is some reassurance knowing there is a next stage, especially when stuck in the first two stages.
Knowing that I feel my way through most things, I have decided to be even more deliberate in tapping into that intelligence. Along with breathing, I am taking note of what my posture, gestures, and sensations might be saying. I suppose that is one way of saying that I am being more mindful but it makes more sense to me to say that I am consciously feeling my way through this all, one feeling at a time.