- Stefanie Cohen
The Resources Close at Hand...and Body
Greetings to each of you, my colleagues, students, clients, and friends, in this bewildering new time.
A sweet by-product of the fact that my practice has for all these years been one in which I have met directly with most every one of you at some point in the past, is that I can easily conjure each of your faces. I vividly remember our conversations, our work together, your powerful vulnerability, the expertise you’ve generously shared, the rich imagery that has unfolded from our explorations; and for many of you, the felt sensations of our bodies moving in space together. So, when I write to you, know that I see, hear, and feel you in return. I am sending each one of you -- and the webs that extend beyond you -- love and wishes for well-being of all kinds and safe interconnection in the communities that sustain you.
While my preference, of course, is to explore face to face together in real space and time, decades of theater, movement, performance, and somatic training — and a perhaps overly active, childhood creative imagination to begin with — aid me in conjuring what I need to maintain connection, strong felt-sense awareness, and embodied presence in virtual spaces. (Gratitude to “sense memory” acting exercises in Gerry Speca’s drama classes at Cambridge Rindge and Latin School for first shining a light on that path and allowing me to use my daydreamy super powers for good!).
Across the board, as with many of my colleagues, I am now conducting all of the embodied offerings in my practice via Zoom.
And embodied they remain.
Together, we create the connection we need to hold the space for our attention to settle in and explore. Together, we navigate the inner landscapes that point us toward what wants and needs attention, amplification, and support. Through questions, movement, sound, and stillness, and by discerning image and sensation, we offer our systems what they need to meet the emotional, physiological, spiritual, creative, and practical needs that arise.
In this time of enhanced uncertainty and enforced containment most especially, I am grateful that the somatic work poises us to locate the resources to be accessed directly from within our very bodies. To draw upon what’s already here, close at hand.
So, currently, I am offering all three slots of Moving Stories Groups in Authentic Movement as virtual ones, and am considering adding another evening time slot to serve any movers, for instance, with small children at home. If you are someone with prior experience in moving and witnessing in Authentic Movement I would be so pleased to fold you in to any of these sessions, by donation (or not, if that is beyond your present means). Information follows on the virtual practice and current calendar of group sessions on Monday evenings, Thursday afternoons, and Friday mornings.
Whether or not you have experienced Authentic Movement but would benefit from an opportunity to receive support in listening to the guidance of your body, addressing current needs and in self-regulating in this time, I have also expanded my schedule for individual sessions and with that my reduced rate sliding scale slots for those in need. If this work can be of support to you I very much encourage you to receive it. I am committed, as are so many of my generous and talented colleagues, to find the ways for all of us to thrive and to extend our healthful well-being to one another.
Please, reach out to me and/or to other educators and healers in the time ahead. The world needs your presence, well-being, and creative spirit now, more than ever.
Extending a freshly, sacredly cleansed virtual hand and a vital, pulsing heart to yours... with love,
Photo by Lisa Steichmann