Mile High: A Protocol for Turbulence
Fair to say, that we have been in a variety of aircraft, all of which have had similar safety instructions. At the first signs of turbulence captains ask you to remain seated and buckle yourself down. In the case of impending danger, there are life vests under your seat and masks located in the compartment above you. The emergency exits are to the right and left of you; those unwilling to help in tumultuous times should ask the attendant to make different seating arrangements. Parents and loved ones are reminded to secure their own life saving apparatuses before assisting others. These directions are often heard but rarely internalized as clear steps on how to handle life when thrown the inevitable curve ball.
Turbulence is resistance, a disturbance, the sudden shift or movement against the flight pattern; it is unsteady and sometimes violent and is usually caused by changes in velocity and pressure. Turbulence in life generally happens when you’re coasting along; even on the most well lit path, it will surely come. It is how one chooses to handle it that determines whether you freak out and lose yourself or heed precautions and make the necessary adjustments. I have been on both sides of the equation. Most times what we encounter when we square up with our partners is a distorted reflection of our past traumas. It is in the most heated times that our subconscious warrior goes into overdrive; accelerating the fight or flight reflex in both parties. In these times it is easy to lose focus on the individual person or the overall mission as he or she warps into every hurt you ever had and every broken dream unrealized. These times feel scary, confusing, and disheartening.
"Most times what we encounter when we square up with our partners is a distorted reflection of our past traumas. It is in the most heated times that our subconscious warrior goes into overdrive; accelerating the fight or flight reflex in both parties."
The staying seated part of the directives is something that most loudly echoes for me right now. That advice can be interpreted many ways but most literally it means to breathe and get grounded, get calm, and get clear so you can prepare yourself accordingly, so you can react more thoughtfully, so you can decide more knowledgeably. Bracing yourself is apart of your responsibility as a passenger. At least ideally, which is what I am continuously striving to be. To be my best in the face of every circumstance encountered and not fly off of the handle; to ride out short bouts of turbulence with grace, patience, and wisdom. To take care of myself: mother, wife, woman first and then reach for my son and my husband. To continue meditating, praying, journaling, creating, seeking counsel, eating well, drinking water, setting intentions, elevating and pursuing my purpose and encouraging those around me to achieve similar goals in their own fashion. That is how I'm assuming liability in life, in partnership, in love, and in parenthood.
How do you work through difficulties? Share your methods with us.
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