I have been told by several mentors that they were holding SPACE for me. I must admit, I never quite understood what that meant. Did that mean they were there for me? Or would be there for me? Maybe that’s what they meant. And yesterday, I finally got a dose of what holding SPACE for someone feels like.
A dear friend has been going through some tough trials and yesterday she thanked me for not interrupting her crying while she was expressing her feelings. I did not even realize that I hadn’t said stop crying or you are okay or it will pass. I just sat and listened on the other end of the telephone.
I was taken aback by her thankfulness. She said, “thank you for holding SPACE for me without interrupting.” “Your welcome” is all I could muster as I was lifted by her words.
You see… I am a self-proclaimed people fixer and saver in recovery. Yes, in recovery. What I mean by that is I have finally, after 30+ years in my own kind of therapy, figured out that I can’t change, fix or save people. There I said it. I am not God. That kind of makes me giggle just to write it because it is SO ridiculous. I have hounded many of addicts in to less than sobriety and thought I have had the magic path to a better life for someone else without their desire to be on that path. No wonder why I have been so tired.
I once read that the best gift a person can give another person in their suffering is to just BE with them in full presence with nothing to fix, do or say.
Can you hold SPACE for someone? Without trying to fix it for them or divert or stop their emotions from flowing. Can you get comfortable sitting with someone while they cry and express their feelings? What about anger? Is it okay with you to watch someone express anger without getting in the way?
Photo Credit : @milivegerova