When I was young I was always getting very sick. It was a great way to get attention. My parents and sister gave me medicine and put cold vinegar compress on my forehead to reduce my fever. But, the best comfort was when my parents would cover me with their blanket all the way up to my shoulders. Almost like the blanket was hugging me endlessly and protecting me from harm. After all these years, I can still enjoy how it made me feel, and it was just a piece of fabric!
Most of you I am sure can relate to that as you remember your own childhood. So,
what was it about that blanket that covered you that made you feel safe before you went to sleep?
Sadly, there are places in the world where people have no blankets; people who sleep with no homes, no clothing. They are lying there not having even the luxury of thinking about taking sleeping pills, instead hoping for at least two hours of sleep without fearing about animals approaching to attack them or worrying about the elements. They don’t have parents who come to cover them with a blanket and make them feel safe and secure.
That blanket of your parents was a metaphor for the merit to be loved. Do we stop to think how fortunate we are? I am sure some who are reading this right now may say, they had a blanket but not the love that can go with it. And yet, everyone can point to people in their llfe that emboldened them to become strong and independent by their nurturing touch upon us.
So what are we to do with the abundance of care we received? There is only one answer for the kabbalist. We can act as the giver today, or act as the people who in still confidence in others, starting with those we interact with every day and making it a conscious intention to be a builder not a destroyer. We may not be the answer for the most in need, but we can take responsibility to sustain the confidence and dignity of our family and our neighbors at the very least.
Our parent’s blanket is just a symbol from when we were young and vulnerable. Maybe that’s why there is such a big market today for blankets in all shapes sizes styles and materials.
At the end of the day no matter how old we become what we are looking for is to be loved as we felt as a child or in some point in our life and feel that confidence that only love from others can give us. It is a universal need at any age.
Yes, it is true, the original gift that God gave us was the gift of independence, and free will, so why do we have such a craving to be nurtured by others? It may stem from an imbalance that is seeking to regain its balance.
The concept of free will or self-confidence has to do with the idea that you are responsible and independent to do whatever you want to do with your life, however, that independence and self-confidence psychologists know is rooted in nurturing that prepared us. .
If you love someone then it is important for you to design your love so that you teach them not to be dependent on you or anybody. So much of today’s dysfunction is because someone somewhere is either too dependent, or manipulating you to be that way. Love, true love empowers.
The same goes for wanting to receive confidence building for ourselves from others. Don’t be shy, ask the important people in your life to teach you how to be more self-sufficient, or skilled in any area, including your teachers, ask them too how to develop more confidence to share what you want to study.
I remember my sons asked me to teach them how to cook their favorite dish and while i was standing there teaching them how to do it they no longer needed me and had developed the confidence in preparing their own dish all by themselves.
In Hebrew confidence is “semicha” which is also the word for blanket. When a Rabbi is given the title of Rabbi by another Rabbi the same word is used “semicha”, from the word to trust, to hold on before the person is falling. From here we learn that the idea is to give independence and confidence to another person so that they will develop on their own.
There is nothing more powerful when you know you can trust your own judgments and decisions to make the best of your life. Those of you out there who didn’t have someone to put a blanket on you, chase people who mastered a certain area of their life and ask them to teach you some of those secrets so you can be good in that area and then pass it on to someone else.
By giving away and sharing with others what can help make them whole, we store up for ourselves enduring light to support our own needs when we need it. Let the memory of your parent’s blanket be your inspiration to have that confidence.