Last week, I went on a trust walk.
I didn’t know what that was either. But when someone I sort of know says, “Meet me at a random park and let’s do a trust walk!” I am the type of person who says, “Hell, yes!”
One of the advantages of the empath / sensitive situation is that knowing who to trust is not my problem.
One of the disadvantages of the empath / sensitive situation is that a simple ninety-minute trust walk laid me up in bed for a day and a half afterward, about which my trust walk guiding friend said “What? That’s not a thing.”
Things that aren’t usually things do tend to turn into things with me. I don’t really know what to say about that except that I am a delicate peony and hopefully the delicate peony benefits are worth it to the people I care about.
I keep trying to describe this trust walk thing to people and keep doing a semi-terrible job, but I’ll give it a whirl for you.
A trust walk is when you get blindfolded and led around a place with nature.
When you’re in the dark, when your sense of sight is taken away, your brain starts operating differently.
We don’t often realize how much of our time and energy is spent categorizing the things around us. Even as I look around the room where I’m writing this, a room where I live, I notice the steady stream of thoughts, “Oh, there’s my red chair that an ex-boyfriend bought me; there’s my dragicorn staring into a bowl of crystals; gosh, I’m glad I tossed that rug in the washing machine, it really needed it; there’s my tiny refrigerator, maybe one day I’ll have a real kitchen again; there’s my bowl of fruit, I hope the ants don’t find it, crafty bastards.”
When we’re out in the world this reaction is intensified. We’re constantly classifying things in our head - noticing a lamp post so we don’t walk into it, reading the energy of the person walking toward us to decide how open we want to be (smile and make eye contact or eyes forward with a quick step?), tracking where we are so we can get where we want to be and then back home again.
It’s a steady barrage of information and stimulus that, when shut off, completely and utterly changes your experience of the world.
The first thing I noticed when the blindfold went on was that my brain quieted. It didn’t have its usual obvious input and so my senses automatically softened and widened - to hear the sound of the water and the dog collars jangling nearby. To feel the energy of the trees around me and the ground beneath me.
The second thing I noticed was that when my friend tried to guide me physically, it did not work at all. I couldn’t walk in a straight line and we both kept running into things. But if she walked a bit ahead of me and I could just track her energy and her voice, my path automatically straightened out and she could guide me verbally around things like mud puddles and trashcans.
The third thing I noticed was how much my energy tends to whirl above my head or stick in my heart. When my energy started to drop from my heart down into my torso and then into my pelvis, I realized that it hadn’t really ever been there before. It was like my entire center of gravity dropped.
Grounding myself and my energy has always been a huge challenge. Getting anywhere near my body took years - the first energy healer I ever went to said she had to yank me off the ceiling by my ankle. And I flew back out the first chance I got. So getting into my heart was a big deal. Dropping all the way down into my pelvis was a major triumph.
In this entirely new space of feeling and sensing, we wandered around the park. I almost fell down a hill, met a trashcan, kept walking straight into the prickle bushes (I was wildly attracted to those prickle bushes), and got really nervous when other people passed us.
After my blindfold came off - while I was still sensing things more energetically and elementally, and less visually and intellectually - my friend asked me how I felt when I was near her energy.
“How do you feel, what do you want to do?”
What I wanted to do was run away from her and straight into the arms of the nearest tree.
So I did. Because the tree felt safe. The tree didn’t need anything from me.
WELL THAT’S DOWNRIGHT FASCINATING.
And probably explains quite a lot about my relationships.
She didn’t need anything from me either. But in that moment, I realized how generally uncomfortable I feel around other people, because I’m afraid I’ll be required to take care of them energetically and I’m afraid of the effect they’ll have on me.
There was an opening that happened in that moment, one I’m still processing and don’t fully understand yet. But, in fascinating confirmation, the evening of the trust walk, I got a barrage of messages from people. Like something in my ability to relate with other humans shifted, and now they felt comfortable reaching out again.
My trust walk experience was so intense that when I got home, I had to stumble into bed, where I stayed for the rest of the day, barely able to move. The next morning, I woke up feeling like I had an energetic hangover.
My entire system has been coming out of hibernation. I’m rebooting. I’m beginning to see how I’ve been led down a very specific path so I can get where I need to be.
It’s weird and fascinating and makes me really curious about what’s coming next.