A conversation with "dread".
Learning to turn in.
Our feelings can be uncomfortable at times but there's a reason that they are there.
Each of them carry a message for us, not to be ignored but to be heard.
And sometimes the very act of hearing them changes their nature.
From carrying a story about pain to one of hope.
This week I went with my wife on a short day trip to Jb (Malaysia).
And I couldn't help but notice a persistent feeling of dread.
This was a dull feeling in my chest, that I started to feel even before entering the country.
As with most of us, I tried to ignore this feeling.
Dismissing it as something naggy, irritating, unimportant.
But the more I tried to ignore it, the more it seemed to grow.
So I told my wife to give me a moment and I turned to it, asking:
"What are you trying to tell me?"
It told me a story of a few years ago when my wife and I travelled to same place we were going to now, but of a time when I was still depressed.
It was a terrible time for us, a time of making my wife upset and feeling trapped with hopelessness in another country.
And like all traumatic events, our minds might forget but our body always remembers.
It turns out that what this feeling was saying was totally valid.
It was afraid we would go on this trip and it would be terrible again.
So I told this feeling:
"I hear you. I remember this pain very well too. It was a very dark time of our lives and I share this pain with you"
It quietened down, knowing I was listening so then I asked it again.
"Instead of carrying this burden all on your own, what would you like for us instead?"
And it morphed in its form, changed it colour, and then it finally said:
"I want us to be happy today, to enjoy this trip and make the best of our day".
And we did.
Keep it real everyone. Don't be afraid to share your pain. It connects us, and is part of being human okay?