One of the things I really savor about my days is putting my girls to sleep every night. It’s a time in the day when the surrounding noise goes quiet and life feels more real than ever; more real than me rushing around through the day or tapping on the laptop. It feels hallowed and sacred, and I often wish I could live more of my day in the heart of that feeling. Getting under the covers and feeling their little arms around me or their little hands in my hand. Having our random and funny conversations, as their minds wander to events in the day just gone. I can hear them breathing softly, and they look so at peace. I can feel them, the growing warmth of their bodies. I can hold their hands and marvel at how big their fingers are getting. They might be flying or running away from dogs or eating sweets in their dreams, but in my eyes, they are at rest. Is there anything nicer in the world to see than someone you love – beyond everything else – at rest? Content? Full up on life? There’s nothing quite like it.
On those special nights, when one of them rests on my chest, I always know they are falling asleep because of the little quivers they make without any realization of them. One night, it got me thinking. Before deep rest – that unassuming peace that we look for everywhere in life – makes home in our hearts, there often comes a shaking first, like when the girls fall into a deep and nourishing sleep. There is always a tremor, a wobble, a falling apart before we come to that peace we so long for. The one that is unconditional. The one from within that the world can’t get to. The canvas that we can explore our dreams from. We can only access it through a shakeup. A shakeup of emotions, a shakeup of circumstances. A shakeup in both. I’ve had my fair share and I can relate to this truth so very much.
As my girls shake every now and again in my arms, I realized that we look at the concept of shaking, wobbling and stumbling as something to be embarrassed of because it looks like we’re losing control. But there is nothing wrong with it at all. What if all the shaking, wobbling and stumbling in our lives is just a sign of us giving up control, and actual proof of us truly letting go – even as we fight it? And through trusting the process, we can therefore live in a deeper, more instinctive consciousness? What is this pressure to always keep it together? To always get things right? To make life pretty? We need the wobbles and the shakeups in our lives to remind us that these pressures have nothing to do with feeling truly alive and being in soulful touch with ourselves. I actually feel so much better in general when I am not trying to keep it together; when I embrace my stumbles so much I make new dances out of them. And when they really hurt, there is nothing more cathartic than crying it out, screaming it out, and learning why I stumbled in such a way so that I can understand myself better, rather than wishing away that I was a “better” person.
I train ladies in fitness throughout the week, and whenever we hold certain postures and there’s a lot of wobbling as they find their balance, I always applaud them. I remind them the shaking is a sign of their core working and expanding. It’s a sign that their bodies are growing. That there is no need to be embarrassed. They often laugh out loud in relief. A kind of “phew, that’s good to know!” I think we all need that kind of relief, where we realize our wobbles aren’t things to be so hard on ourselves about.
And so, lovely one, I want to say the same to you. In all the areas that you are shaking in your life at the moment, processing tremors here and there, why not try looking at it as a sign that you are giving up control and slowly letting go for bigger and better things? Why can’t it be a sign that your deeper faith is at work; a certain kind of unconscious trust emerging slowly into your awareness? Why can’t it be what precedes the peace and rest that is on its way to restore your life and give you all that you need? Next time you wobble, get excited. Get ready. Next time you feel a tremor, look out for the blessing it’s making way for. Next time you shake, remember the last time someone fell asleep on you and shook a little bit here and there in order to fall into a deep rest deserving of their souls. The wobble is a sign of life, and rather than being gripped with fear of where the wobble might take you, resist it less and let it be a friend. Deep down, I believe most of these things are. It’s our clinging to things that gets in the way of our peace and soulful rest, and our inability to note these blessings in disguise.
Have mercy on your wobbles and the days you stumble the most. Make a dance out of your shaking, and when you feel a faltering, hold your head up high with expectant eyes. These shakeups are part of a bigger growth happening in your life. Yes, they are a sign. They are a sign you are becoming more and more alive or, in the case of my sleeping children, on your way to deep inner rest and peace.
S.C Lourie is a free-spirit mama trying to make sense of her life in the city, when her heart can always by found by the ocean. A lover of words, rhythm, color, stories, traveling and humanness, you can find her kicking up a storm with her online tribe through her writing and art at Butterflies and Pebbles on Facebook, Instagram and Etsy.