Just saw this — and yes, playfully testing boundaries certainly sounds like my kiddo!
There’s something healing in getting to play with kids — their curiosity and insight and creativity and willingness to experiment can be so freeing! I hope you get to play with some kids, and/or your sweet younger self some more soon @Dru!
What would your younger self like?
What if you nurtured more of that?
I have a whole section in my Thriving Beyond Trauma course about the importance of play and curiosity to be able to heal old painful patterns we’ve been carrying… Yes, definitely acknowledgement, acceptance and compassion first, and coming back into our bodies more consciously, but then getting curious helps so much! And it makes the stakes easier to manage too, when we approach our healing and self-cultivation with a sense of play, knowing it’s ok to experiment and try things, and to recalibrate or course-correct as needed…
It can help to ask gentle questions, and to let ourselves imagine different ways that things could have gone for us, to help create healthier ways of being, so our bodies can shift any unhelpful patterns created by painful or confusing experiences (or the responses we had to them as younger people without the resources we have now!)… and, our current bodies & spirits get to feel the difference, as we let go of those early judgments and expectations, and open to possibilities that feel more aligned with who we truly are.
I’ve been asking my son for the past year or two, when he tells me something someone else has said to/about him that clearly seems to bring some questions up for him:
“Does that feel true to you?”
And he can pause and reflect… and it seems to bring him more empowering clarity about who he is and what ideas to take on as part of his identity… and what ideas or expectations are the other person’s, not his own, and how to navigate those differences better. (And, these lessons with him certainly help me, too! Wish my child self had those opportunities… and glad to have them now!)