Open Hands = Open Heart
When my hands hurt I go to my heart space to release them. I know that seems a bit strange but your hands are a map of your heart. So when your hands hurt your heart hurts.
Visualize placing your hands on your shoulder blades in your upper back. Whatever part of your hand hurts you’ll find a knot in your upper back/shoulder area. So, to release your hand pain — release your heart knots with this week’s Ageless Heart / Hand Opening Practice.
One of my friends died several months ago. She left behind a grieving partner. The day after her death his wails of pain shook their house. It was hard to hear. Seeing his hunched over heart space brought a pang of sadness into my heart.
Grief is the shadow side of the heart. As you allow people, animals, things, and experiences into your life you want to hold on to them. We all do but we can’t. Everything in this world is in a state of constant change. Releasing your grip on ALL is your work — our work and its hard work.
In her poem To Have Without Holding, Marge Piercy says,
Love with the hands wide open.
It hurts to love wide open
It hurts to thwart the reflexes of grab, of clutch; to love and let go again and again.
Slowly, as the days have passed my grieving friend ‘s partner is standing straighter. He bursts into tears at any moment but his wailing has subsided. We do heal when we can let go and it’s a process. There are steps to letting go.
The five stages of grief
- Denial – That moment when you learn that you’ve lost something or someone. Shock, disbelief, and denial set in. Your hands refuse to let go.
- Anger – This one is tough for me. I don’t like to get angry especially at or around someone or something I’ve lost. I’m sure you can relate. But as I do get angry my grip lessens and I feel better.
- Bargaining – I do this by trying to talk to my higher power, I say if you bring _____ back I’ll do ____. That doesn’t work. I still have my hands all gripped up hanging on.
- Depression – The hardest stage of all. That dark place of hanging on where your hands are all gripped up and hanging on for dear life.
- Acceptance – Ahhhhhhhh! This stage takes time but if we are willing to release the grip of our hands and let go. We will float over to acceptance. Here our hands are free and our heart open.
I ran into my friend’s partner the other day, he said, “It’s too hard to let her go — it hurts too much.” He then burst into tears. I noticed his fists were clenched. I hugged him hard and told him, “I love you.” He said, “Thanks.”
I’m holding my hands wide open for him to take as long as he needs to grieve. To open his hands, grip back, and open again, Slowly, like a plant that’s been trampled, he’ll push out new growth, and begin to bloom again. He’s already on his way.
Heart / Hand Opening Practice
The absolute best way I know to open my heart / hands is to lie over a noodle or Noodle Ball in my heart space. I breathe deeply in and out of my heart. As I do I stretch my hands and arms overhead, out to my sides, or up to the ceiling. Feeling the knots in my upper back and how they affect my hands.
I roll the noodle or Noodle Ball around and find other knots of tension and again move my arms and hands around. Feeling the tight stuck places all the way out to my fingertips.
Love with your hands wide open!