Flexibility, Love, and Trust

Austin Knight, MA, TLLP, LLPC

I love cartoons, I know I might be outside of the age range most folks consider that acceptable, but I really do love cartoons. That sense of escapism with elements of realism for me is something I cannot find in any other form of media, save for comic books but that is a different blog post for a different time.

Right now my favorite cartoon is called Steven Universe. To quickly sum it up, is about a boy who is named after the show. Steven is is half alien and is being raised by his dad and his alien mom’s best friends (his mom passed away when he was a baby). They go adventures, have family dinners, all the while this boy is growing up having to bridge two worlds. The reason this show is my favorite is because it delivers messages of inclusion, love, diversity, and mindfulness in a way that both adults and children can learn from.

In an episode aptly titled “Mindful Education,” one of the adult characters teaches Steven and his best friend Connie about the importance of not running from thoughts that trouble you but being able to face them, because they are a part of you all the same. The only way to triumph over these feelings, they explain, is to allow them to happen. Sometimes you might feel embarrassed, or angry, or depressed, or anxious.

These are all going to happen to us as we walk through life, but if we run from these feelings, we are never able to explore where they come from, and never learn how to best triumph over them. We find ourselves in a cycle of the feelings rising, and us running the opposite way, away from ourselves. By reminding ourselves that we are here, being present in our authentic self, we can develop a superpower in a way that allows us to combat our troubling thoughts.

To me, that is the essence of therapy, working on honing your own unique superpower.
A power that allows you stop, take a beat, and remind yourself:
you’re here.