I love explaining the French words “chaleur humaine” to my students. It means this warm and safe feeling we experience when we are in the presence of loving people.
Since I am a child, I love nothing more than being in the presence of others, chatting, laughing, spending time together.
I am aware so many women suffer from loneliness. I would love to find a solution.
During the month of Ramadan, I saw old gentlemen gathering around the empty tables of some cafés. They would not eat nor drink before sunset, but they were together since morning, for the sake of being together.
Teal Swan has a fantastic video entitled Touch Deprived! (Touch…The Need You Are Suppressing).
Ever so light flower petals, gracefully flowing in the summer breeze. I remember the absolute joy and wonder I experienced watching this in the Galliera garden in Paris.
This is why I had this deja-vu feeling when the vibrant colors of purple, red and orange of bougainvillea fallen petals were scattered on the intense green of the lawn at my son’s school here in North Africa.
I could feel the sweet and sour taste of the present moment when you catch it just as it turns into a memory.
What remains is gratitude to be alive in this intense world, whatever the nostalgia can be when we touch the ephemeral nature of life experiences.
This is the Galliera garden I am talking about (in Paris), located around a great museum.
I don’t find fasting difficult in itself because I don’t feel the hunger anymore. This the reward of a consistent fasting practice.
However, what is very deep is managing all these strong emotions which bubble up. It is as if I was purifying myself from old painful beliefs. They rise up so I can get rid of them.
I refuse to indulge in self-pity because I had an argument with someone I love. Words are sometimes not enough to communicate but I will always try to do my best to express myself. Yes it can be messy sometimes.
I used to be terrified of having a conflict with a loved one. Now I see it as a make or break situation. If the relationship breaks, it was not meant to be.
I want to be able to say the truth. I don’t want to repress myself in order to avoid conflict. I don’t want to hear the loudness of a silence full of resentment. I need clear communication, even if it means it is not perfect and involves crying and forgiving.
The people we love deserve truth and honesty.
Sometimes we need to analyse our fear. Behind the fear of moving that my son was exhibiting lied the worry of not being able to make new friends in our new place.
Sometimes we need to express the deep emotions to avoid being eaten by anxiety from the inside.
And sometimes we need to walk on the path of life with the fear by our side without trying to get rid of it, as Pema Chodron eloquently explains in her books.
The worst is to stood still because of the fear, having only regrets about what we could have done with our life. Life is short and sweet my friend my sister. Live it to the fullest.
Do you remember Davina’s song “After the rain comes the sunshine again…“?
Actually, anger is a more elevated state than sadness. Then joy can enter the picture.
Recently, Teal Swan whom I adore released an ecourse to help victims of sexual abuse.
In a short extract on her Instagram, she shared how anger was a necessary step to overcome trauma. Not being able to express anger makes it impossible to heal. For a long time, I was unable to be angry. I was sad and overcome by grief.
Being angry, without hurting myself nor others, is actually what helped me to feel at ease with what happened. We never forget but we can live despite the past circumstances. We can live without defining ourselves by our past. I define myself with the choices I make today, with how I choose to show up in the world, how I talk to people and relate to the people I love. This is what matters and what I focus on.
It feels so weird to come back to France. Honestly, I thought I would never go back.
Sometimes France gets on my nerves. However, I feel I made peace with it, by seeing it through the eyes of non-French people.
Then I realized that if I was so upset with France, it was because it did not protect me when I needed it. France was not there for me because it did not take me seriously. It did not protect me children nor me.
Nevertheless, today I feel that the pain I experienced came from having expectations. I was certain that my “country” (if such a term means anything, which I doubt) would protect me.
The best thing is not having expectations as they say in the Four agreements. To avoid disappointment. And feel free.