My roots extend from the heels, from the fronts of the feet, through the mat, through the floor boards, through the concrete foundation, through the dirt, through the bedrock, through the crust, through the mantle, all the way to the hot molten core at the center of the Earth. The Earth’s gravity pulls me down. With equal force, I pull it back up, through the roots, through the heels, through the tailbone, through the back of the heart.
Dr. Eric directs us to open the eyes to a soft gaze and begin to move around the room, roots and all. I move in clockwise circles following the spiral Ro witnessed in my body the day before, the day we met. Back then, I felt exposed in her blatant gaze, I choked the urge to hide as she excitedly called out my crooks and twists, top to bottom, front, side, back. Now my slow circles drag me toward her, almost independently of my will; I am surprised to recognize her as I focus the gaze for a moment. She weaves, opening a wide space for me to pass through, avoiding me perhaps.
Nonetheless, when we are to stop and find a partner, I am by far the closest to her. She glances around looking for someone (anyone) else, she gets me.
We take turns to receive each other’s emotions, blindfolded. Her terror washes as a warm welcoming wave over me. Her excitement chokes me up. She is confused by my peace, pulled in by my lust, appalled by my resentment.
Some emotions are easier to summon than others.
Both sets of eyes blindfolded, we connect our hands skin-to-skin, and move, first, without an agenda, grounded then ungrounded; second, with an agenda (whatever we choose to want from the other), ungrounded, grounded. Finally, grounded, no agenda, no skin, just the hands touching.
And – stop. Hands apart, blindfold off. Much closer now, we look in each other’s eyes. “May I share what I wanted from you?” I offer. “I wanted you to make dinner for me.” She chuckles: “I could do that. I am a good cook.” “When I wanted that from my head, it was like, ‘feed me’, but then when we got grounded, I was admiring how wonderful your food was.”
Dr. Eric tells us to sit down facing each other, knees almost touching. We take turns opening each others hearts, gently, slowly, like a rare book, fully grounded. My heart aches as Ro opens it; I wince under my blindfold, but let her read, whatever comes up. Upon my turn, her heart is warm in my hands, I open it gently and I take time to close it and embrace it between my hands before giving it back.
Ro takes her blindfold off and says slowly, “When I opened your heart, I saw a happy little girl, full of joy. But then there was a war. You were so happy when you were little. You wore a white dress. I wanted to put a cocoon around you, to protect you.” I fold my hands still warm from her heart and bow to thank her.
This is not a dream. This happened.