The sacred space between us

True connection between us is a “sacred space” and is what brings us together and make a difference, it nourishes and feeds us.

What can truly make a difference in the world is creating more of that sacred space between us.

The other day my dear neighbor came in for a short visit.  My husband was preoccupied on his phone trying to get a hold of our teenage daughter who had gone for a walk to the beach and had said she would come home for dinner but hadn’t yet returned. At one point he looks at our neighbor and he says “I’m sorry that I’m not present with you, but I just have to make sure that Kathleen is okay, I will be there with you in a min.”

The next day I saw my neighbor and she said “You know, that was so nice of Hugh that he told me he was sorry he was not present, he didn’t have to do that”- I told her that it is something we consider really important in our family, to be there and to be present with the people we meet, no matter who they are. Of  cause that is not possible all the time, but then we make a point of saying it. To the kids ” sorry Love I really want to be present with you and hear what you are saying and right now I am busy. Let me come back to you so I can hear you properly.” We do the same with each other or if people call us or drop by at a time that is not convenient. The message is ” You are important to me”.

We have all been in the situation where we feel that we are not being listened to or not being taken seriously – for example, at the doctor’s when he is too preoccupied with other things. Or perhaps your therapist nodded off while you were in the middle of a story.  I tried that once and I crawled right back into my hole. Of course, I was furious but then I did not know what to do about it and I turned  the anger inwards. Today I can laugh about it but then it felt awful.  When this happens we feel worse than when we came.

Arnhild Lauveng  was schizophrenic and deeply psychotic – she has written 2 amazing books  ” Tomorrow I was always a Lion” and “As useless as a Rose”. In the books, Arnhild tells of how she came back to reality and how the nurses and doctors who were able to be there for her, trust her, connect with her and be authentic with her – those people helped her back. This story shows just how powerful authentic connection is – it can heal!

Arnhild returned to study and today she has a degree in psychology. She works as a psychologist at the Kongsvinger Psychiatric Center in Norway and helps people with schizophrenia.

You can read more about her here

A Ted Talk I came across with Hedy Schleifer – The Power of Connection says it all so beautifully! I had the honor and privilege to attend a weekend workshop for therapists in Denmark with Hedy. She truly is an incredible woman. I hope you will enjoy this!

16 thoughts on “The sacred space between us

  1. This is a wonderful reminder. I find myself slipping into not being “present” – with the cell phone, the dog, the computer, dinner plans – all pulling me away from moments big and small. Even if just in my head I need to remind myself to be present – thank you, Anne!

  2. This is really beautiful, Anne. I think that being in the moment/in the present is a really difficult thing to do, but as my therapist keeps telling me, that’s where life happens. It really is such a sign of respect when you can tell someone you aren’t able to fully be there at that moment, but that you still care about what they have to say that you want to be present for it. I love the message.

    • Thank you Alex for your kind words!! You are so right it is difficult being in the moment and so important to have reminders. Otherwise we miss out on life’s most beautiful things!

  3. I love this post my friend – it is a reminder to put aside absorbing but materialistic things and enjoy your moment with people you care about 🙂
    Thank you!

    Choc Chip Uru

  4. What a great post. I feel that the idea of “being present” is so incredibly important and a lot of people lose that in our society. I was actually having a conversation with a friend about how many people (mainly our peers) don’t like to carry out phone conversations anymore and, instead, prefer texting. I feel that things such as little phone calls and conversations can make such a difference in feeling as though a person is being heard. Thanks again!

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