I taught 8 precious little babies (all under 12 weeks old) and their parents infant massage this weekend and walked away touched, moved and inspired. These powerful little persons left me thinking about what it means to be truly vulnerable in my life…or not. It dawned on me how much I resist the idea of being vulnerable…how close this seemed to some sort of weakness. But my 8 new little friends had another sort of message for me. They reminded me of the power of living vulnerably.
As infants we lived in a constant state of need and vulnerability…with every dirty diaper, rumbling tummy, or case of the cold tootsies, we asked those around us “would you please take care for me?” But now that we are big and grown, it’s not as easy to ask for help. It doesn’t feel so powerful to go around needing people all the time, does it?
I remember about five days after our first daughter was born being completely overwhelmed. I melted down in tears when I had to ask my husband for help…could he PLEASE move the clean laundry baskets filled to the brim from the basement to the 2nd floor? I was mad that I even had to ask. I wanted it done. It wasn’t like any big gift…why should I have to ask???!? It was his laundry too!! I had just had a baby for God’s sake and wasn’t supposed to be lifting anything but the baby. Couldn’t he read my mind? Predict my needs? Apparently not. But once I melted down in tears and asked for help, you bet your biffy he was moving those baskets. And sure enough, a day came where I didn’t need to ask anymore. I could just leave the piles of clean clothes near the bottom of the steps and they would magically appear upstairs the next time he was going that way.
In ways great and small, we all fight against the idea of needing the people we love. We want to be strong. We want to be powerful. We want to be lean, mean, self-sufficient machines. But guess what? We were not designed this way. We need only look to an infant or an elderly person near the end of life to remember this. The divine plan for us includes living in union with others. Living vulnerably.
Think about the people you love most in this world. Now think of the last time you made yourself truly vulnerable to them? How often do you share your most vulnerable self with others?
If these babies had one thing to teach me this weekend…it was this. We are most powerful when we can embrace where we are most vulnerable.
This week, let’s strive to live from a powerful place of vulnerability. Let’s be authentic with the ones we love. Let’s remember that life is precious, not because it is tough and unchangeable , like a diamond, but because it is soft and vulnerable, like a little baby.
Suzanne, aka Zen Mommy
In addition to mommying to two magical girls born in 2000 and 2003, Suzanne owns a holistic health center in St. Louis, Missouri where she practices as a physical therapist, Certified Infant Massage Instructor and health education teacher. Certified in a number of healing and life education approaches, Suzanne offers life coaching as Zen Mommy Coach.