Today I had sort of a second chance at a situation I posted about in October. I was in a museum in DC when a Mom got very angry with her son. I didn’t hear the exact words that she said because she said them in a low voice, but they were threatening and she had gripped him by the arm in a none too gentle way. I had a similar experience in a parking lot outside a store in October and didn’t know how best to react. Today I remembered that experience and remembered the judgment I had felt toward the mother, which I’m sure didn’t contribute anything positive to the situation. So today I chose to react differently.
I stood calmly a few feet away and continued to look at the display in the room we shared. Rather than judge her for her anger, I simply found my center of peace and focused on letting it flow from me. I also chose to remain there to allow the peace to continue to flow but also to stand witness to that moment. She knew there was someone else there and the child knew there was someone else there. I don’t mean stand witness as in a witness to a crime, but more to hold the space for peace in that moment and to be a reflector for each of them to see themselves in, for whatever that was worth. I stood calmly and peacefully where I was, looking around until after they left the room.
I will never know if they felt the peace I offered in that moment, but I felt it and I felt the difference reacting differently made in me. I can only hope that it created an opportunity for peace to be felt for them as well.