Another EMDR session last week, and I’m just mentioning it now because as usual, it threw me for a loop as they say, and I’ve been functioning poorly since then.
The attacks that gave me PTSD happened to me as a very young child, and I blocked out a good deal of it. Because I was so young, the memories that come back are extremely confused. I guess as a young child, I just didn’t know what to make of what was happening, so the experiences aren’t that recognizable. Or something. I don’t know.
So in therapy I talked a bit about my week, and my problems with the walk last Sunday. So Ms T suggested EMDR while I remembered how I felt on the walk when I was exhausted in the middle of it. It’s kind of an emotional experience – one emotion, exhaustion (if that’s an emotion) leads to another, anger, which leads to more anger and then hurt and sadness.
I saw some images but they were fairly benign – I was on a family outing for instance.
Ms T stops every minute or so (she’s waving her arm in front of me and I’m following her hand with my eyes) and checks in, so I tell her what is happening. I simply breathe, follow her hand, and allow emotions or whatever to surface.
After a few of these check-ins, I’d had enough. I knew I would not be functional at home, so even though Ms T encouraged me to continue, I decided I’d had enough.
I seem to be remembering the edges of the experience – I seemed to be trying to tell my mother about it, and she got angry with me, because I’m sure I wouldn’t have been able to explain the problem. My mother is not comfortable with emotions anyway, and I’m sure she would have been angry at this unexplained upset. My mother cared – she wanted me to tell her what the problem was, but when I couldn’t, she got angry with me. Which probably caused me to implode – not to bother trying to tell her what was wrong, but keep it inside as much as possible.
After therapy, I’d planned to listen to a guided meditation tape I have bought for the purpose of calming down and feeling less distressed. I didn’t. It turns out you need some degree of hope to listen to a meditation tape, and that hope was lacking. I just curled up in bed and stayed there for the rest of the day I think. Maybe I slept some. Actually listening to a meditation seemed beyond my strength.
Friday I again came down with stomache distress, so hung out in bed mostly. I did find listening to our public radio was doable – I actually had a lot of patience, and listened to some programs I usually find boring. Even the late night ‘new music’ program held my interest. I could have emotional pain, but also listen, which was good. To do more, I would have had to suppress everything, but just listening hit the spot.
This time, by resting a lot, I didn’t come down with a full blown illness, yahoo. I’m maybe getting the hang of this. Kind of riding the wave somewhat.
Wednesday I again have therapy, and am not sure I want to go back to EMDR. Friday I have an interview for a contract, and cannot be in despair at that time, for one thing. I’ll see. Maybe I’ll ask Ms T how long she sees this EMDR process lasting. Probably she’ll say she doesn’t know.
Recovering from therapy kind of takes all week.
Fractal image from: Digital Expressionism