School is so hard, I feel rushed to finish my reading. At home my parents are bugging me to finish my chores, and work too! (Elijah, age 10)
Elijah’s parents had concerns that everything he did seemed difficult to him. So why was life so challenging and moreso how could we help him find ease in his experiences?
We dedicated time in therapy to explore and define roles and expectations. We implemented preventative strategies to lighten the load of tasks and make his life more manageable. The moving moment happened when we found ways to embody ease and find the just right fit!
Elijah, was asked to explore the space around his body – to identify where his body was and where it stopped (the outline and parameters of his form vs the air around him). When he began to move, he contorted his body into shapes and twisted around to look at the various options – between his legs, around his head, through each finger. His muscles tensed and his face grimaced. He grunted and shrunk in his posture. He made a seemingly easy task of moving his body into a challenging act of gymnastics or like the game of twister.
I brought his attention to his effort. I communicated to him to breath and to slow down his exploration. I decreased the steps of his plan into separate actions: First look at your toes, and then look at your hips.
Additionally, we explored the concept of space in relation to his school or home. I asked him to put his body in a posture that would depict, for me, what it felt like to be loaded with work and rules. He shrunk down smaller and folded into a ball. I asked him to present the opposite – a posture of ease and free play. Immediately, he swung his arms open and in a swooping motion smiled and lightly floated to the ground and lay calmly still.
Elijah realized the difference between ease and challenge. He felt this difference on his body. He later expressed to me that he observed in school, that he was gripping his pencil and tensing his muscles more than he needed to be. He felt that with more tension came more challenge. He communicated that when he is joyful and moving with ease, life appears more manageable. He could even try to sing and dance around while tidying up his room. No more stomping or holding body motions for his tasks but rather an open, playful flow!
Everyday I work with children of all ages and their families to support their development, awareness and connections! For more ways to learn how to embody parenting and support your child through life Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at (310) 966-0700 to schedule your time.
Please Note: These stories are based on real moments but all names, ages, and identifying information has been changed to ensure confidentiality and safety for all individuals involved. The events are a composite of related scenarios used to illustrate the work; bringing understanding to the benefits of supporting children through a mind/body connection.