'Thanks so much for last week's forest school session and for supporting F. when she found herself a bit nervous on arrival.'
Witnessing a child wrapped in fear is heart wrenching. The first impulse overcoming me is to do whatever is possible to remove that strong emotion that is taking over her body, mind & soul. And I've got to dig deep not to do so.
Fear is genuine. It is a lived bodily experience that no words can soothe. Believe me, I know. F. reminded me of that and I wanted to make sure not to add shame to the mix with my clumsy words of diminishing or even dismissal of her true lived experience. F. needed support and the support I provided was the support I was offered the weekend before meeting her, when I had to meet my own fears.
Witnessing, listening & empathy
Three ingredients allowing F. to take the decision to give it a go, take a risk.
F. has experienced something important on that day - meeting the fear, walking through it with tears, snot and clenching fists she was able to come through the other side, reaping the benefits of overcoming such challenge: play, friendship & pancakes.
A lesson that I have walked through many times, forgot about it and walked through it again - the difference is that each time the process & lesson harvested does not hurt as much as the previous times.
May we all be met in this way when we are meeting our fears.
And so, Thank you to You too, dear little one; mighty in your courage, vulnerability & bravery.