The girls at the recovery house were all in a good place today. With several having left in the last week with their babies, I said a silent prayer for mother and child for a safe and loving journey together.
One of the “veteran” girls who never participated in our yoga sessions decided to join in. And it was not long before she was “all in”, and with encouragement I could feel her confidence growing. Pausing halfway through, and with a smile, she wanted to tell me something:
She had to get drug tested three times a week and every time she would have to give urine, she had anxiety. It took her three hours yesterday.
As the other girls were clearly supporting her, I stopped the class to focus on her. After asking a few questions, I discovered that as a young girl in elementary school she had made fun of a teacher while she was using the bathroom. Both she and her girlfriend had laughed at the woman.
Sensing an opportunity, I asked her if we could role-play and re-enact that day years ago. I guided her to reconnect with her feelings that day, and ultimately to the point where she could forgive herself.
And at the right moment, I held my hand over my heart and told her I forgave her.
The young woman instantly felt relief and I could tell that she had shut off emotions from this and other actions in her past.
I had her think of some positive mantras that she could say when she had to be drug tested. She embraced the concept. I told her to focus on being grateful for the beautiful newborn baby that was smiling up at her. And that she was “drug-free” and while learning to navigate life while living clean.
It is a daily struggle for these addict mothers to trust and share. And I am grateful that they have chosen to trust me and open up to the possibility of a new world.
Namaste, Jennifer Miller