Together, Onwards.

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I realise that I haven’t been writing much about my sessions lately. There’s been a combination of reasons for that; I’ve been pretty busy with different projects, I’ve been using my time to read my book about how to work with fragmented selves and taking notes about how to incorporate the ideas into my own therapy and process, I have been sleeping through the night for the most part and that is usually when I’d write up my sessions and I’ve just been resting at other times and trying not to get too emotionally involved in therapy stuff in between sessions.

I haven’t been listening back to my sessions, for some reason I can’t face it. Maybe it’s avoidance, maybe it’s self-preservation or maybe it’s both of those things.

The sessions have been pretty okay. So I am not avoiding them because they were awful or anything. But I suppose I am just gently moving along trying to find where my tolerance levels are and being careful not to trigger myself in sessions or out of sessions, now that Sienna’s outside help isn’t there anymore.

I still have this amazing adult-self fronting and who is really winning at life right now.

I am so grateful for her and so in awe of how well she is coping and keeping the parts settled. She has a strong “ nurturing parent” voice and she has been communicating with younger parts when they rise up with anxiety or sadness or feelings of being lost and abandonment. She is tending to them and most importantly, they seem to be listening.

Sienna seems to think she’s the real me. The core me developing. She might be. I am okay with that because she’s very capable. I like her. I like being her, feeling her power and sense of agency. She feels like a very healthy, settled adult.

The only thing that makes me doubt her as the core me or a natural progression towards a more integrated adult self is that she didn’t turn up until there was extreme crisis ( the therapeutic rupture) She took over when things became too much for the rest of my system of young parts to deal with. There was an abrupt “taking over” by this adult self. And my God! I am grateful she did because otherwise I may have imploded, become a danger to myself or perhaps not have survived at all. Her arrival saved me from a great deal of mental anguish.

Even though SHE feels very authentic, her arrival does not. She came forward too swiftly to be a core self which has naturally grown from the safety and loving presence of my therapy and therapist.

Of course, I could be entirely wrong. Perhaps this part has been growing in the background for months or years, unbeknownst to me or the other parts. Maybe she IS a core part of me, maybe this is the real me growing through all the trauma stuff?

I suppose only time will tell. Even if she is a part, created from crisis and designed to protect and defend, she is still part of me, like all the other parts and I will integrate into a one core person eventually, but I will draw power and wisdom and personality from all of the parts. They’ll all still be me.

I suppose a lot of me, whilst coping very well, is waiting for the other shoe to drop. Just waiting for this part to disappear as quickly as she arrived. I am waiting for the young traumatised parts to stage a coup and take me over and I’ll be plunged into the depths of terror and abandonment once more.

I know, I sense that I am holding back so much pain right now in order to try and repair this rupture. I haven’t gone near the emotions that I know I hold about what happened. I can’t face it, I feel overwhelmed very easily as soon as we approach the subject of what happened and why.

Sienna and I have had very brief moments of discussing it. And it’s been in very general terms and we haven’t talked in any depth about it. We are both just taking things day by day.

Part of me is curious fascinated to know her side of things, what she felt, what brought her to where she just imploded. Part of me really wants to tell her how much she pissed me off and angered me with some of her messages to me. Her attitude in her texts were shitty. And I sense from some of the things she’s said since that she has a much different understanding and perspective of what happened and why and I feel like her perspective is wrong.

She sees things from her own perspective as a therapist and as a non-traumatised individual. She is not reading my actions and feelings over the past year from the lens of a traumatised child/children.

But since talking about it is a no-go for me right now, we can’t iron out those issues.

Most of our sessions have been attended by this new adult part that is in the driving seat. So the sessions are fairly light, mundane almost. But there’s been some fresh thinking on both our parts in how to move forward.

I have been reading a book which is immensely helping me to un-blend from my fragmented trauma parts and recognised their emotions as theirs, not mine. And it helps me not be hijacked by their emotions and swept away in trauma responses.

The book is giving me both practical and theoretical understanding and is mapping out a way forward for Sienna and I. A few of my sessions have consisted in talking about my findings from the book and talking about how we can use those ideas going forward.

This week I let Sienna read some of what I’d written on my blog about the book and about my understanding of what happened to us, the pitfalls we blindly fell into and caused the huge rupture.

Sienna told me that she had never thought this rupture was the end of us. She never thought of terminating. It was never ever on her radar for us to not find a way forward. She said she felt confused and uncomfortable and frustrated and overwhelmed, but she always knew that she just had to stick it out, tolerate the discomfort until we could both pick our way through it.

It was a relief to hear that, but I do wonder why that message never fully got through to me? It didn’t seem clear that she wasn’t thinking of termination. Everything felt so precarious.

As it stands, I think Sienna is also super impressed with the book and it’s explanation for what happened with us and also with the ideas for moving forward and working with all the parts.

I think right now we are just existing on a small island of hope and genuine care and commitment to one another and trying to trust that we’ll find a way forward together.

And together, is the most important word of all.

 

 

 

 

 

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#Goals

So… that’s Christmas 2017 done.

How was it for everyone? I’ve had a really lovely time. Very relaxing and peaceful…. well, after the madness of Christmas eve, rushing around like a madman trying to get presents delivered! But after Christmas eve, it has been just lovely.

I feel really happy actually. And hopeful. Hopeful for the year ahead. I have plans, goals and dreams.

I am toying with the idea of a new blog. Not in place of this one of course! But an additional one, one where I can use the space for positive affirmations, one that will be lighter and more fun and just a break from blogging about the doom and gloom of therapy and mental health shit.

Next year I want to concentrate on creating my own happiness and that for me involves healthy living, bringing beautiful things into my apartment – things I love, quirky things and most importantly colourful and cheerful things.

I want to begin concentrating on making more art and hopefully selling more art, I really need to get more serious about that.

Trying to get my lazy ass off the sofa and onto the yoga mat again would really help me. Exercise remains a battle for me. Movement for some reason is really difficult, psychologically speaking. I love yoga. In the summer I was doing around 40 minutes every day and it felt fab. So I don’t know why I struggle so much with maintaining it. I am guessing it has something to do with my freeze response, perhaps some self-sabotage and also having a chronic immune disease and accompanying crippling fatigue doesn’t help!

More meditation! I do meditate regularly-ish. But I’d like to try daily for some added Zen in my life.

Losing weight… I know, I know.. yawn, right? BUT, guys…. I am proud to tell you that since the end of June/July time, with lots of breaks in between, I have lost 1-2 dress sizes ( depending on the shop or garment). I have no idea how much weight I’ve lost. Scales are not my friend so I don’t keep them in the house. And I don’t want to know either, I am happier to feel the difference in my waistband than what a scale says.

I can see the weight loss a tiny bit, but when I look at myself I still see fat. Which I suppose is sort of accurate since I am still overweight. But I just see how much I still have to go. But I am not letting it get me down, I am letting it fuel my determination. Other people are starting to notice and comment on the weight-loss, especially if they haven’t seen me for a while. So anyway, weight loss is a major goal for 2018.

Part of creating my own happiness is a realisation that I have to own my life. I have to live. I have to find ways to really move forward and begin achieving the things I want for myself.

It isn’t easy, it’s never going to be easy. Having Lupus and Fibromyalgia severely clips my wings at times. No matter how much I want to achieve my goals, the illnesses WILL interrupt that over and over. But the important thing is that when I AM well, that I get right back on it and don’t get too discouraged.

So part of the idea behind the new blog is that it would really help me concentrate my mind on the good things I am achieving and want to achieve. It would be a way to really hone in on what I want and what it is I need to be thinking about to achieve those goals.

I started an instagram account as a lot of you know, and I have found that to be so helpful, to give myself daily affirmations, notes of encouragment and the like. It’s really lifted my mood and allowed me to concentrate on what’s important to me. So a blog space would allow me to elaborate on that idea.

I have talked here about my goals and I notice that I haven’t even mentioned therapy as a goal.

Do I have goals for therapy? Maybe.

It’s not an area of my life that’s bringing much happiness or healing right now and I am struggling to see a way forward with it. It feel so hollow and empty. It simply isn’t enough for me anymore. Not as it is.

And I know therapy was never designed to be someone’s whole life. It was never meant to meet every need, not even close, I really get that.

But to be honest it’s not really meeting any of my needs that I can think of. What am I actually paying for? Torture. That’s what. The repeated picking of scabs, the repeated slicing open of old scars, and what for?

It is reducing me to misery. It reduces me to the most vulnerable place possible and when that happens I am incapacitated. I am frozen with terror and heartbreak and the deepest loneliness. It feels like a re-enactment of my childhood, over and over again.

That can’t be healthy. It doesn’t feel healthy.

I am such a capable adult. I am strong and resilient and intelligent and I have such capacity for love and happiness and laughter. I am independent by nature. (though that’s hard because of illnesses.) I am emotionally intelligent. I am a hopeful person, a ” cup half full” person, I am optimistic, I prefer to see the good things I have rather than the things that are bad.

Yet therapy…. ugh. It reduces me to the traumatised child. The disenpowered child, the disenfranchised child, the trapped child, the abandoned child, the abused child.

I carry all those parts with me. Every day. I know they are there. And I had hope that going to therapy would lessen the weight of that. I had hoped therapy would reach those child parts and we’d find healing for them. I truly believed in the work my therapist and I were doing. I was willing to really “go there” with the work. To plunge to the depths and really fix what’s wrong.

But I am not sure I can do that anymore. My life feels on hold while I am scrambling about on my hands and knees in the therapy trenches.

And I have lost faith and trust in Sienna. I am not convinced she’s capable of holding the process. And I have zero faith in any therapist doing it.

I am positive there are ones out there successfully working with developmental trauma, but I am just not willing to continue opening myself up to that level, only to be emotionally or literally abandoned by therapists who thought they could hack it but “oops, can’t”.

The cost to me is too great. And I am not willing to put myself through it anymore.

If Sienna can’t get her shit together with this rupture and this work, then that’s the end of therapy for me. There will be no more therapists.

My hope is that we can get past this rupture, that we can find a way forward. My hope is that Sienna will see the error of her ways/thinking and finally truly understand exactly why I need so much from her. That the way things are now is inadequate.

My disorganised attachment means that I can’t leave her right now, I love her. I will probably stay, until I finally give up any hope or we rupture one too many times and I flee for good.

I know that isn’t good. But that’s just how it is for now.

Therapy is causing me a lot of hurt. I know there’s a lot of repair work to be done- if it’s even possible! I feel despair and hopelessness at how far Sienna and I have fallen. I feel a sort of muted depression all the time now as I experience how our relationship is being conducted. I have little fight in me to even try to make my needs known. It all feels futile to even try.

I know this is really bad. I know, I know, I know! But I don’t know what else to do. I don’t know if it can be fixed. And like I said I can’t and won’t leave. Not until I know for sure there’s absolutely no hope.

So, in the meantime, I want to create a life I want. I want to focus on the happy stuff. I want to enpower myself. I want to take responsibility for my own happiness. I want to start getting my shit together. Therapy or no therapy.

Thoughts on the new blog idea?