Can You Afford To Be Vulnerable?

June 2, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog

My father is in the hospital.  He’s 86 years old.  But this post is not about his health issues but about the changes that I have noticed in my emotional response.

Before my husband passed away, I wore a thick protection around my heart.  By no means I was cold, but I behaved tough and decisive.   The truth is I had so much love in me that I was afraid to feel it all.  I was afraid of what it would do to me.  So I took on a posture; life is tough and I am tough.

Now there is a great difference between being tough and being strong.  Tough as mentioned before is a posture. Strength is the result of lessons learned and wisdom acquired.

In my process, as I gained strength, I also gained wisdom and with that I was able to let go of my grip on being tough.  It feels better.  I no longer have to act up being strong, I just am.  Being strong is quieter, but most importantly being strong lets me be vulnerable.

When we are afraid of our own emotions it is often because our core is not strong enough.  We are afraid of life’s intensity.  And we are afraid to hurt.  When we feel stronger we can let go of our defense mechanisms and experience life in all its intensity.

I am now able to feel everything my dad in the hospital means to me.  I can feel all the love I have for him.  I can feel his mortality, my mortality, our path together, and the inevitable cycle of life all of us must journey through.

My emotions flow easily, because I will not crumble.  My vulnerability is anchored by the wisdom I have gained from being open to life’s experiences.  My life is richer for that.

Are you tough or are you strong?  Can you afford to be vulnerable?

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