When I first learned I was becoming a father, I knew my child would be my teacher. I spent time with my wife and her developing belly, both feeding it love as well as listening and feeling the subtleties of a human inside. I was learning from my child even before he was born. Three years later, I still look to my son with an open mind and open heart as I try to learn as much from him as I try to teach him.
As a planet we are experiencing the largest pandemic of my lifetime. Our society is full of stress. Many economies are near collapse. Divides in wealth and culture become increasingly distinct. When I turn to my child, however, Innocence Abounds. Over the last two months, the fun-filled, curious, and joyful little man has distinctly changed from a young child to a grown boy. He takes each day one moment at a time. He approaches the work with curiosity, mixes concoctions in the kitchen, runs through the woods and turns rocks over to find worms and bugs. All these activities come naturally to this boy.
I wonder, what is it about children that allows them to pass through such times with an abundance of joy? I believe that children are very skilled at separating what is important from what is not. Their innocence puts a high value on Love, Joy, and Engagement. Innocence quickly casts away Pain, Fear, and Stress.
I miss spending valuable time in the clinic doing massage. Rather than building stress around this “loss,” I listen to the lessons of my child and ask questions. Why not focus your thoughts on Joy? How can you share Love? What is holding you back from being Engaged?
Continuing with this inquiry, I must explore further. Why do I let Pain subsist? What can I do to move past it? Is Fear serving me? Can I let go of fear or use it for something positive? Whom does Stress serve? How does it feel to drop into the moment rather than dwelling on the past or worrying about the future?
This is the truest time to learn from our children because, pandemic or no pandemic, children live in the moment. They express quickly what they feel. Then they move on. Children move towards enjoyment. They never stop absorbing and learning how to be joyful in their world.
Let us join our children in spirit and action. Let us take the time to relearn that life is here for living now and Innocence Abounds!
Brook Golling, LMT
Article written for Ashland Natural Medicine