“Highly sensitive beings suffer more but they also love harder, dream wider and experience deeper horizons and bliss. When you’re sensitive, you’re alive in every sense of this word in this wildly beautiful world. Sensitivity is your strength. Keep soaking in the light and spreading it to others.” ~Victoria Erickson
I am lying next to my son in his bed before turning the light off one night, in that relaxed space between awake and asleep where he allows himself to feel and share. He tells me that he feels very lonely at school.
He shares his loneliness in the middle of kids that are not seeing him for who he is, and that are not being nice to him. He shares his feelings of being invisible, always a bit different and unable to create deep friendships. He discloses that the mockery of others calling him names causes him a great deal of pain.
I immediately relate to the sadness he feels and feel this deep tightness in my heart. A profound sadness and grief as I listen to him. A need to stop his pain immediately and protect him forever from all the cruelty of the world. A deep mother’s pain. A screaming motherly protective instinct.
In addition to feeling his pain, I feel my own shadows and fear of being rejected. I feel my wounded younger self being isolated, mocked, and lonely as well. I don’t want that for him. I numb the feelings and go in “fixing mode,” telling him what he has to do—stand up for himself and put his foot down.
Obviously, fixing mode is not what he needs right now, and he just retracts … and indignantly says, “I don’t get it.” I pause and thankfully get that this is not what he needs right now. He needs me to hold space with empathy. I breathe. I allow the next essential step to unfold.
I let myself feel his pain, I let myself feel my own pain, and we both cry. Wounded son. Wounded mother. No separation.
After a while, when the energy has moved, I tell him:
“My son, it can feel lonely out there. It can feel lonely in there” (showing him my head). “Especially for highly sensitive souls like you and me. I have been there. I feel your pain. I feel my own pain as a mother, and my wounded child feels it too. You are not alone.”
My son and I are quite alike. We are highly sensitive beings. It is a bit of a cliché these days, but I am not sure how else to describe our uniqueness.
We have food, sensory, and emotional sensitivities. We are both highly sensitive to loud noises. We had to leave a theater twenty seconds after the start of a kids’ play, as it was too loud for him, when he was three years old. I am highly sensitive to any type of noise, small or big, and I can hear things that other people can’t, like electricity, and other faint noise that would bother no one but me.
We both get migraines with aura from artificial lightings or certain screens. He is highly sensitive to the texture of clothes and food. We both get highly affected by what is happening in the world or injustices in the communities—to the point that some days I can’t even function if I listen or watch atrocities or sad stories on the news, and I have to take a day off to nurture myself and realign.
We are both highly empathetic and can feel what others can feel. We are both highly in tune with what others can’t see, on a human level and in the energetical and spirit realms.
It almost feels like we come from a different planet; like we’re trying on a human space suit and visiting a place we don’t fully understand, finding it hard to adjust here amongst other humans, amidst the noise.
So that makes life hard to bear some days. We have many triggers, and we feel the whole and wide spectrum of emotions… on a daily basis.
We are highly reflective and constantly observing, analyzing, in our heads, so we are prone to self-doubts, leading to paralysis and procrastination.
We have social anxiety when we are in bigger groups and tend to feel uncomfortable, invisible, awkward, and easily exhausted in such a setting
But our sensitivity also makes life majestic when we are living in alignment with what makes our hearts sing. Theo loves nature, exploring, mountain biking, playing the piano, and being with and learning about animals; and he can get lost in all of that—utterly joyful, captivated, and happy.
I love playing music and singing, yoga, hiking, and spending time in nature, and it’s all equally magical for me.
We are also super creative when we get into a state of flow.
We don’t go with the status quo, and we can make our own way, being a seed of change in a family, organization, or the world.
Above all, being highly sensitive enables us to connect with others on a deep level, knowing what is going on emotionally for them, having observed humans for a while and being highly intuitive.
So, to all of you highly sensitive people out there, you are needed. Don’t ever think that you are not good enough because you don’t fit nicely in the world around. You are uniquely positioned to be a seed of light to the world around you.
You have a gift for understanding and empathizing with people. Your creative talents can bring joy to others and help solve some of the world’s biggest problems. And your passion for the things you enjoy can inspire other people to stop merely surviving and start getting the most from their days.
Use your strength, be yourself, and release the limiting belief that you are not good enough. This is simply not true; you are more than good enough. So get out there, do scary things like being visible, and shine your light.
Because you are highly sensitive, it takes a bit more work to effectively take care of yourself—your body, your mind, your emotions, and your energy. Eat nourishing foods that are good for your gut, sleep at least eight hours, exercise, spend time in nature, meditate, set boundaries with other people. And above all, do the things that light you up daily: create, sing, write, journal, paint, play music, dance… whatever it is for you!
I was lucky to find yoga and neuro-linguistic programming early enough in my life, and they saved me in the moments of hardship and loss, when I met the darkness of my soul.
I had ways to approach life, manage my emotions, and see the bigger picture and the world in a different way. I had approaches to relax my nervous system and move my blocked energies. I am hoping my son will find his path and healing approaches that work for him. Of course, I will do my best to guide him along the way, but I know he will be the one to find his path and do the work.
To all the sensitive souls out there. I hear you. I feel you. I understand you.
Share your light with the world. You are truly needed.