My 11 Year Old Niece is Braver Than Me

It was the evening before Thanksgiving and I was tucking my 11 year old niece into bed. I was giving her a back rub (part of our night time tradition) to help her unwind from the days events. While I was massaging her back she turned to me and said: I told a boy I liked him today. I paused, somewhat surprised by her late night admission and said: “oh, I didn’t know that you liked a boy, What is his name?” She replied, and then I asked with genuine curiousity: What did he say?

He said he would let me know on Monday, she replied again.

Now I wasn’t sure what exactly he was going to let her know on Monday but I decided to let that go and continue with my line of questioning.

Will you be okay, no matter what he says on Monday?

Yes, she replied earnestly.

I’m just glad to get it out of my head, she added.

How long have you wanted to tell this boy that you liked him? I asked,

About two weeks, she said.

Wow. You are braver than me, I said. I’m not sure I could have done that at your age. (Actually, if truth be told, I wasn’t sure if I could do that now!)

After she drifted off to sleep, I couldn’t help but reflect on our conversation. I knew exactly what she meant when she said she was just glad to get it out of her head. I have found that when I don’t express something that genuinely needs to be expressed it can get stuck in my head and start to go round and round creating all kinds of havoc. I was genuinely so inspired by my niece’s bravery and boldness and her knowing that she needed to express.

In chakra language: the throat chakra is the center of healthy expression. It is also the center for growth and learning. When we hold back our natural expression, things stagnate and growth and learning slow down. When we express in a genuine and attuned way the energy moves, situations in our lives evolve (one way or the other) and we naturally grow and learn. Healthy expression helps move the energy in our bodies and in our lives.

How did the story with my niece end? I actually have no idea. I broke my foot playing soccer with my 12 year old nephew the next day and got distracted and forgot to ask. (not to worry, my foot is just about healed now and I will see my niece shortly.)

But, one thing I do know for sure, is that my niece slept well that night because she said what she needed to say and had surrendered the outcome. She got it out of her head and was at peace.

~Hayley Mermelstein