Heart All Aquiver

On Saturday, Pat’s 65th birthday, our coffee time brought up the challenge we both seem to have of connecting emotionally with others, with each other, and even with ourselves. On Friday I had had a great lunch with my son John, and enjoyable times with others. Pat and I had had a great birthday celebration eating out at Maggianos . But, I queried, “Am I truly emotionally connected in these encounters?”

Others seem perplexed when I talk about my limited capacity to love and feel emotionally connected, and likewise Pat. “Well, I see your tender-heartedness. Isn’t that emoting?” “Well what exactly is tenderheartedness,” I asked back. Pat answered, “Quiver! One’s heart ‘quivers’ when one feels compassion with another. It is not ‘resonate with’ or ’empathize with.'” I responded, “Maybe allowing one’s heart to be moved.”

Pat continued, “Or your heart is touched. But I still like quivering — that sweet, tender, heart. Like when we see a newborn baby, or puppy. This quivering feeling is a natural connecting movement. Maybe I’m just learning that there is a natural movement in the heart when one is not guarded. Maybe the word is ‘aquiver‘ Maybe we are born with hearts aquiver. Maybe this natural state of being all aquiver happens at conception — and gets defended against even in the womb.

Later I looked up aquiver. “in a state of trepidation or vibrant agitation; trembling; quivering (usually predicatively): The bamboo thicket was aquiver with small birds and insects; the exciting news set me aquiver.”

Pat went on, “And I notice that the more that I can perceive the connectedness we all are, the less afraid I am. That’s so. If we could be anchored in that, then when people are angry with us, we can be at peace.” She went on to say how functional her AIP practices are — providing tools so one does not drop into reaction. “Life is all about staying in balance and in presence — do not give the patterns that would rule our lives a moment of life. AIP is so good for me!”

“And Pathwork for me,” I added. And I do not think I was defensive here. I truly honor what AIP does for her, AND I am increasingly aware of just how Pathwork affects and has affected me. I gave an example, “Just yesterday I was reading Pathwork Lecture #5. It seemed to lay out a framework for my life. ‘Isn’t this amazing,’ I found myself saying, almost out loud at the gym!” Pat observed, “You like context. Pathwork gives you context! That is so important to you!”  Yes this is true. Sense of context makes my heart all aquiver! And loving? Well perhaps loving making my heart all aquiver is in there somewhere as well. I suspect that I just have to quiet down to feel it.