Today I’m sitting in a classroom as part of a job-related workshop. My part of the workshop is not until later in the day. I’m currently waiting for the last morning session to end while “protecting” the room and everyone’s belongings. As I’ve been waiting, I just happened to notice an ADA newsletter (American Dental Association) and on the front page is the photo of a boy in a dental chair with a 10-week old therapy dog in training. The caption describes how petting the puppy helped the little boy stay calm through what was normally a rough routine for him. As I first looked at the photo I felt a sense of compassion and a kind of understanding wash over me – like an insight into what this boy’s struggles might feel like.
I dare say that a few years back I would not have had this experience. I would have been torn by the photo vs. accepting and seeing the “big picture.” Yet, I seem to have turned a corner and I feel as though my own personal tragedy has brought me to this combined place of softness and strength. Seeing the photo and reading the caption suddenly brought it full circle. In looking at the photo, I realized that had I not been thru my own personal (for lack of a better word) “tragedy”, which broke down the barriers to my heart, I would not be able to now embrace the softness and strength that have always been within me
When fully integrated, life’s tragedys and upheavals can make you soft and strong – all at the same same time. And then you can walk lightly through life and be good for all in your world.