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We were sitting in Panera Bread talking over broccoli cheddar cheese soup (of course) when she got a text that changed the course of our conversation.
She put her hands behind her head and leaned back, not in a relaxing way but in a fidgeting way. Her face got flushed, and she squirmed in her seat and said, “It’s happening right now.” She was having an anxiety hiccup (attack is too strong a word here, but it was a thing). “Okay,” I said. “Tell me more.”
Text - Someone - Text - Weed - Dirt
She was hiccuping because she didn’t know how to respond to a text where she might be disappointing someone, where they might be upset at her. The text was just the weed peeking out from the dirt. The anxiety was coming from what was under the dirt, the tangled deep root of the wounded child that stayed in the heart of the adult.
We can pull the weed, but we better get at the root or we’ve done nothing but temporarily made a pretty show of the external.
Woman - Talk
“Listen to me. You are a grown woman, and you can handle this. Let’s talk it through right now.”
She took a deep breath, nodded at the fact that she was, indeed, a grown woman and able to handle this situation. We talked it through, she dealt with the text, and all was fine. She was okay. External.
Anxiety - Truth
Anxiety was telling her she couldn’t handle it, but the truth was, she could, and it wasn’t going to kill her.
We started at the roots, and it took her no time at all to go back to the child in her heart who learned that she must not trust her responses or she might lose what she wants more than anything: love. Internal.
Friend - Cathy - Children - Observers
My friend Cathy says that children are excellent observers but terrible...
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