Therapy Thursday

Want to get down my session from last Thursday before I forget it all. I’ve had a rough few days trying to recover. Yesterday I stayed in bed mostly and didn’t leave the house at all. Finally at the end of the day I decided to send Ron an email about how I was feeling. I didn’t have that strong pull to do so, but I thought maybe it would help. And it did. Just telling someone else what was going on, someone who could understand, helped. I suddenly had a bit of energy. He replied almost right away. The reply was one sentence, plus a scheduling issue. Whatever. Not an in depth response, but I’ll take it.

Today I thought was going to be better, but I have gone back to bed a few times. I need to get out and get groceries, and just get some air. I’m still sick, with that post-flu fatigue. Plus struggling with body memories. At least I am reading a good novel, not a mystery, but a real novel. It’s touching my heart. The story is about a young black city girl who is taken under the wing of a white couple who live in the country. The way the author describes their emotions, shifting the point of view back and forth between these two characters, is pretty amazing. Both points of view, that of the woman and of the girl, are given equal attention. I like that I’m not reading about violence, and that something emotional can hold my interest.

The session. Most of it is taken up with talking about my daily life. We talk about my contract ending, about my last meeting with the director, about my mixed feelings about him. Ron looks taken aback by what I say, and points out that I seem to be going from hating him, to liking him, and that it’s confusing. I talk about how I found some things about this boss attractive – the way he wants to communicate, for instance. And that he was fairly kind in our last meeting. And the way he seemed to like me.

So he communicates with anger? Ron asks. Well, not just that, I say. Though it’s true, he was angry some of the time. He did remind me of my father – my father also wants to communicate, at least about some things, he is emotional, they are the same type somehow. Odd how I didn’t see that from the start.

I think this discussion about the director is what caused me to switch. Earlier, Ron brought up the parts – did I want to let them speak this time. There didn’t seem to be the push for them to speak as in former sessions. However, I let B. pop out and she chatted. Then I was back for adult conversation.

Somehow or other, with this discussion about the director, and how I always felt our interactions were fraught with significance somehow, and then to my father, I switched into really young feelings. I’d been saying how my father had been both nurturing to me as a small child, and also critical….And I’m not sure how it happened, but then I was B, and crying every time I tried to say something.

It was almost time to go, so Ron pretty much right away started trying to ground me back to the room. He asked me to feel my feet, feel my back against the couch, feel my legs. It’s unusual for him – he used to basically go with whatever came up right to the bell, so to speak, but this time he didn’t do that. I guess my talk of grounding before ending a session really made an impression, because I was in no shape to think about anything at all, especially not about grounding.

I didn’t much like it at the time, because I felt like I was being put back into a box. But I could also see I needed to leave, and so needed to switch back somehow. All the talk of feet and legs and back though spoke very much to B, as she responds very well to these simple ideas, and is happy she can. Which is good, but also doesn’t encourage her to switch out. Anyway, I partially switched back, and so left, wiping tears off my face right at the door in case there were people in the waiting room, which there were.

So that was it. I think the problem is, once that child part is activated, a bunch of crap comes swimming up – it’s all of a package. So at home, I have body memories, and on Saturday I ended up so dissociated I was unable to feel anything for a while.

It’s frustrating that this happens. I’m not sure it helps either. Now I’ve been through a bunch of sadness and helplessness and memories – does that mean they won’t come back? I don’t think so necessarily. I need to figure out how to make this helpful. How can I try to ensure this is moving me forward, and not just triggering me uselessly.

  1. I like that he listens and remembers. The grounding part that is. But I don’t like opening up or becoming someone else and having to come back to being who I need to be in order to leave or function. It’s been a weird weekend for me too. 💜

    • Ellen said:

      We are twins then, separated at birth. 🙂 I liked that Ron remembered also. Thanks AG. Hope your weekend gets more peaceful.

      • That we are. Sending peace your way too. If you lived closer I’d ask you to go to yoga with me. I have a class at 4 and 5 on Sundays. Makes for a good ending or beginning depending on how you look at it.

  2. It’s better for me to not be a child part when i leave. Is very hard to function and is traumatising in itself for me. Any talking time is destabilizing but it is healing for the part and for you in the end

    • Ellen said:

      Talking time is amazingly destabilizing, for me too. I don’t get why that is, but it is. I’m hoping it is healing….Thanks luverley

  3. i’m glad he’s at least grounding you, it might seem pointless but its far better if you dont leave in that fragile state, it may come afterwords but at least then your at home and not out in public. XX

    • Ellen said:

      The grounding does help. Even though it didn’t entirely work, it did to some extent. Plus I liked that he realized this was a problem, me needing to leave, and tried to help. Thanks Many.

  4. I sometimes also think “why am I doing this in therapy, when it makes me feel so bad?” I recently asked that of my therapist, and she said “Because you are moving toward wholeness, you long for that.” I told her, “I’ve lived most of my life unwhole; why can’t I keep doing that?” and she told me, “If you were content being ‘unwhole,’ you never would have started this.” So I don’t know if she is right or not, but I do want to believe that this work is moving me towards being healthier. And it is doing the same for you. Maybe in time we will be better able to soothe and ground the wounded parts ourselves, with less pain in the process. I hope so.

    • Ellen said:

      I really hope so too, for both of us. I’m losing a lot of days not able to deal, and hope to change that. I used to think – OK, if I’ve forgotten a bunch of bad stuff, why remember it? Isn’t it better to leave it forgotten? But….I now know reasons why it’s better not forgotten. Live and learn. Thanks Q.

  5. e.Nice said:

    I’m sorry you are still healing from the flu. I think that makes it harder. I feel more vulnerable when sick, but also tend to open up more since my defenses are tired too. That could also play a role in what happened. I am glad Ron is trying to help you ground before you leave. The few times my therapist has done it I felt stupid but it was helpful.

    • Ellen said:

      Yeah, that could play a role. Stupid but helpful – that describes grounding to a T. 🙂 Thanks Nice

  6. I agree with La Quemada’s counselor. If we didn’t want to change we would have never started counseling. My counselor explained to me that I kept going over the same information because I was hurt in so many different ways. Sometimes I felt each part wanted their part of the story told, so I went over the same information multiple times. When they all had their say I would move to a new subject. The process was slow going but I feel it was worth it to me when I integrated all my parts. Moving forward is hard, cheering for you from my computer.

    • Ellen said:

      Yes, I do want to change. Sometimes I’m just not sure what I’m doing is getting me anywhere much. I wonder if it’s to do with parts, as in your case, needing to go over things many times….Thank you Ruth

      • I reminded myself that I was moving a group forward. I didn’t want any of myself left behind. Takes more time move a group rather than just one. I learned to be patient with myself. I highly recommend it. Hugs.

  7. Rachel said:

    Ugh, sorry you had such a tough end of the week and weekend. I hope Monday is off to a better start. Or at least you are feeling better. Because that triggered place is so hard to be in for any length of time.
    I like your thought about “making this helpful.” Because just getting triggered in itself does not feel helpful, so working with the material that comes up does sound like a helpful idea. Sending support, and calmness for the week.

    • Ellen said:

      Today has been better thanks. I do get through the feelings eventually. Or they lift, or something. Exactly – just being triggered isn’t enough, so then how to ensure I am doing something helpful with what comes up? That’s the question I’m pondering. Thank you Rachel.

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