I was in an intentional sharing circle recently. The gentleman next to me, a friend, noticed I was taking deep breaths, and he commented on this.
I told him honestly that those breaths were an expression of a deep anxiety I was bringing to the moment – an anxiety not related to the circle.
My friend replied that hearing that made him feel protective of me.
I spontaneously teared up and reached for his hand. Within moments I felt better.
Another friend in the circle wanted to know what else I was feeling, what was going on for me. I replied that I felt better and now wanted to hear from (and about) others in the circle.
“I feel like you’re trying to deflect the attention,” my second friend said. “Like you’re running away from something.”
I said, “I’m done. I was feeling scared and ungrounded and now I feel okay. That’s the story of this moment.”