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Old 03-20-2019, 08:13 PM #311
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Default Re: In Session Today: Part VI

Quote:
Originally Posted by Echos Myron redux View Post
Was a very, very deep session. Not sure I can write about it but don't want to forget it either. I do love that man.
that's awesome!
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Old 03-21-2019, 08:02 AM #312
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Default Re: In Session Today: Part VI

Today's session, in which I discussed playing Jenga with my therapist...




Today’s session provided much needed breathing space. R arrived and immediately asked whether I would like a hug.




We sat down and I thanked her again for her email.




‘You are more than welcome. It’s been a tough week?’




I gathered myself and explained that my mum had gone back to work today, after doing her back whilst on a First Aid course. ‘Fear and pain on top of pre-existing pain and fear.’




‘Yes. If you are going to do it, what better place. Is this a recurring issue?’




I gave a little background, and then mentioned that I had made it into work on Saturday.




‘Good. You sound quite proud that you went.’




‘It was almost like an out of body experience. Somebody from the care company came and dropped me off, but I don’t usually have to navigate. There was a wrong turn involved, and it happened to be 20 second video interview day.’




R asked what the purpose of the video interview was. I explained that we had to talk about our experiences at work, and the aims of the project. She said that twenty seconds didn’t seem very long.




‘I don’t really know what happened. I’ve purposefully asked not to see the footage, because I know that if I do, I will want to reshoot it.’

R commented that my remark about navigating gave her a really good insight into the impact of recent events. ‘Is it about the emotional impact or Mum not being able to help as much as she usually does?’




‘All of the above.’




I remarked that the problem with the phrase ‘It will be OK’ is that it doesn’t leave room for the present moment not being OK.

‘What will be OK? Mum’s back, the situation…it’s almost like a shutdown.’




‘Yes.’




R and I talked some more about my experience at work, when one of the young people wrote a piece on parental illness in response to one of our exercises. I explained that I wanted to leave the room, but as a member of staff I could not.

She asked what I would have done if I hadn’t been staff, and I acknowledged that I probably would have left the room, but under ordinary circumstances it would have been easier to handle.

Then I updated her on the FLT situation.




‘I was going to ask, but thought I would let you bring it up in your own time.’




‘We told the young people about it, and got mixed reactions. One person is already involved in a drama group there, and another young person wasn’t comfortable with performing there. I cut in and reassured that it would just be a normal session, at which point my boss said that was what we needed to talk about.’

The young people left and we had our meeting. One of my colleagues immediately said they didn’t feel comfortable putting me in that situation unless I wanted to.

I told her that I had asked my colleagues afterwards why doing the right thing sometimes feels like doing the wrong thing. R asked what I meant, and I explained that I feel like I should go. R suggested that we reframe it, and said that by not going, I am opening up an opportunity for my colleagues to give a really good workshop. ‘I am not saying that you aren’t an integral part of the team, but if they are constantly wondering whether you are OK…’




‘I like who I am when I am at work, and being at the FLT takes away up to 70 or 80% of that capacity.’

I said that I could still provide an exercise, but there is no sense in putting myself at risk.




‘And that’s where I am with that.’




I paused and R said that she thought I had dealt with it really bravely.

I continued to say that I felt like I was playing Jenga.




‘I have only played once, but…’




R said that with Mum’s back, she sensed my tower is really wobbling. 'In addition to the pressure you're under trying to deal with everything else.' I explained that the first time I played with a friend, I was almost holding the tower up. R seemed to find the analogy really useful, and asked me what happens when the tower falls.

‘What is your reaction? I immediately want to go “Oh, no!”’




I paused to show her a new poem in which I said I flinched at loud noises, even if I am the one making them. She commented on how I had encapsulated everything we had talked about in the session so far.

‘I can hide behind poetry for the rest of my life.’




R asked me whether I felt as though I was hiding. I said that there was a sense in which trying to find the perfect word for a feeling overtook actually feeling it.

Returning to the Jenga analogy, R said that she could well imagine me trying to hold it up ‘But if the tower falls, and you want to continue the game, what needs to happen?’

‘You need to rebuild the tower.’




‘And when it is rebuilt, it is stronger.’




R then asked whether I wanted to play Jenga with her. ‘I’ve never thought about it before, but with the strength of the metaphor you’ve given us, if it wouldn’t make you feel too unsafe…’




‘Stanger things have happened.’




I asked whether we could sit on the idea, and she told me to let her know.

I talked about how my anxiety over the last week had been coming out as irritability.




‘Things that wouldn’t normally annoy you have?’




‘Yes, and on top of everything else. It’s like we were saying last week. I don’t need anything else in that cupboard, and when things happen, it’s like people taking blocks.’ At some point it dawned on me that the tower needs to fall to continue the game.

‘When a wound or something happens, you don’t just leave it. You clean it out.’




‘Then it heals well.’




‘But the cleaning hurts.’




R asked whether I was OK to leave it there, and apologised that we were somewhere deep towards the end.




‘Are you OK, Lost?’




‘I…’




‘Not a trick question.’




‘I am going to take this to my journal.’




We scheduled for the 26th, and R warned me that she will be away the week of the 15th.
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Old 03-23-2019, 07:54 AM #313
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Default Re: In Session Today: Part VI

I started off by telling him a bit about my week, I had sprained my ankle and my partner had been diagnosed with Asperger's. T commented that he'd been thinking something like that, which surprised me a bit, I always felt that I share almost nothing about my boyfriend.

Mentioned that it's difficult to decide on what to discuss because during the week there's so many things, but they all disappear so quickly again and don't seem relevant anymore by the time I'm there.

T asked about our session last week, what I remember about it. It wasn't much, I had looked at him once and remembered being happy about that. Then I realized I'd been angry with T during that session. I told him that it'd been gone by the time I left.

He said how I always used to deny ever feeling angry, so he felt it was a rather important session. He told me that he probably provoked me a bit back then. I said usually I'd wait to tell him if I'm angry until the week after. It's a very difficult feeling to have, it's far too strong and hard to control. He said how I probably show a lot through my body language but that's hard to read.

At some point I mentioned that it's difficult to show when you're angry because when you're sad or scared, people feel for you and try to help. But when you're angry, they judge you for it, tell you to stop or get angry back. He replied with something that sounded like he'd never realized that.

We talked a bit about my childhood, how I'd often been very aggressive back then, but at some point during high school completely switched and didn't show any anger ever anymore.

Then, T wanted to talk about my partner. I made a joke about how our diagnosis are a good fit for each other. T said that maybe we are both unconsciously searching for the emotional part we struggle with in the other. We talked a bit more about that.

I decided that I wanted to go back to anger stuff, we talked about my parents and how they used to fight and how especially my mom reacted when I was angry. I told him that I often want to destroy things when I'm mad which actually was really difficult last week. It takes a lot of control not to hit the chair or kick the wall. T said how it's good to feel small doses of anger with him.

We got quiet. T asked what I'm thinking about. I said I'd been missing him, had been reading a lot of my old notes on sessions and such. He told me that he's here now and that we can concentrate on being together now. He suggested I could look at him, but at first I was too scared. I managed later on for a couple of times, but told him that it's also just nice to hear his voice.

He asked about my job, I've been working there for almost two months now. I mentioned having a bit of trouble with one of my office mates. That guy's mom has just been diagnosed with dementia and shares some of his issues with that with me and the other guy who's in my office. That's difficult for me due to me right away feeling bad for the guy, worry about getting dementia myself, worry about everyone else in my life getting it... T said how I absorb other people's feelings too quickly.

We talked a bit more about the people there, how I like it. I told him that I like most of the people, but one guy annoys me, since he didn't greet me one time. T suggested that the next time I say 'hi' and he doesn't reply, I should go after him, wave in his face and go 'hiiii'. I tried to convince him that this is a horrible idea and anyone normal would either be upset or weirded out if I did that, but T didn't seem to think so.

Then we wrapped up, T gave me a new prescription for my meds, shortly asked about side effects, then told me to call him if something came up before next session.
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Old 03-23-2019, 11:47 AM #314
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Default Re: In Session Today: Part VI

Quote:
At some point I mentioned that it's difficult to show when you're angry because when you're sad or scared, people feel for you and try to help. But when you're angry, they judge you for it, tell you to stop or get angry back. He replied with something that sounded like he'd never realized that.
I think there are big differences in how people react to anger when it's coming from a girl/woman vs. when it's coming from a boy/man. I've been trying to learn to see anger as a source of power but it's hard to unlearn all the stuff about being angry=being out of control or irrational or bad.
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Old 03-23-2019, 12:50 PM #315
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Default Re: In Session Today: Part VI

From yesterday:

I cried bucket loads and can't actually remember much now .

We talked about the dream and why I emailed it instead of saying it- to create distance. Whilst the doctor one was about being in control, the other helpless.

He said that maybe what happened with my cousin wasn't a one off event, that maybe it started younger. but we wouldn't be able to tell. Did I feel responsible for it?

What did I think that he thought of me?

That he could see me as a three year old. He got the little prince book I gave him from his bookshelf and said not every book made it there only special ones. He opened the book and we talked about the first picture with the hat which could be seen differently.
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Old 03-25-2019, 06:38 PM #316
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Default Re: In Session Today: Part VI

T was totally wonderful. We talked for a minute about his old truck so I could take my shoes off, he stood by me at the emotions even though I got too scared to ask him to so I was able to tell him I was mad. We looked at old family photos and he sat beside me and he lovingly flipped through my great aunts hand written cookbook. We got to be two humans together rather than Dr and client. We did some work too... talked about my mom until he rather bluntly exclaimed that I had mother issues, then looked sheepishly at me... I laughed and asked him what ever would give him that impression. He smiled knowing he didn’t offend me. He acknowledged and validated my impatience at how slow things are going and my desire to have longer or more frequent sessions in a way that allowed the conversation to stay open to options. He was just awesome... after scaring the daylights out of me by running 20 minutes late.
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Old 03-26-2019, 12:00 PM #317
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Default Re: In Session Today: Part VI

Today’s session felt fast paced. I was only half aware of what I was doing. R came in and sat down.
‘How are you doing?’
‘My shoulders have been up around my ears since 11.00 on Friday morning.’
‘Oh?’
‘I don’t think I understood “we won’t have a workshop in April” so when I received a message from one of my colleagues saying the next workshop would be at the Minack, and then had to make it official that I would not be attending … I had just arrived at pottery class and explained to my tutor that I had received an email from work. I made it official, then had to deal with a loud “Coward!” from The Critic.’
‘So that means you won’t be working again until June? How does that feel?’

Perceptive of her to ask – I explained that I had composed an email to my students that will reach them via their parents.

‘You are still facilitating and fulfilling your role.’
A discussion ensued about me realising the impact of my disability, and R acknowledged that it sounded like I had been dealing with some pretty big realisations in that regard. She asked how I was feeling having managed it so bravely, noting that I had done it, as a result of our conversations.
I said that I was feeling OK, and then changed tack.

‘I didn’t want to spend time on that today.’

‘OK. We did spend a lot of time on that last week…what are we doing?’

‘I have been putting some thought into your question from last week, the one I hadn’t asked for a while.’

‘I think I remember.’

‘Who am I holding it together for?’

‘There was a swear word in there sometimes too..’

I explained that I had realised P was still having an influence on my work, reading from something I had written between sessions.

‘Shaking is new…Anybody would feel wronged by what I experienced, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t get to move towards healing.’
R asked what I thought the shaking was about.

I explained that I believe I use poetry and writing as a way to pass emotion onto other people, but when I read my words aloud ‘It opens a door.’ I went on to say that I wanted to continue in this vein in future.

R said that she had some questions about the piece. I remarked that we have had to work hard for eye contact, although in that other space, ‘I could have told you anything you wanted to know about the floor.’ Then R realised that I was talking about my previous therapist.
I continued to say that it must be some kind of achievement to invalidate a client within the first five minutes of them coming into your office.
‘Invalidation comes up for me too. I remember when we first met and you told me about your experience before we started having sessions. I felt really angry as a human being, not just as a fellow therapist.’
‘I don’t think I even got to the point of discussing January 2011 with her. Pre-verbal trauma is a really effective way of shutting somebody down. And that was before we got to dragon metaphors.’
I read R a new poem which talked about my inability to verbalise things. I asked how she received it, and she said that every time I read a piece of writing in session or bring something for her to read, she gets a new understanding. ‘Particularly when you’re talking about it being another language…that helps me understand even more.’
We talked about more things.

‘I’m picturing something, and I want you to be able to see it too.’ I ended up drawing a diagram to help R understand my state of mind.








I spend a lot of time between sessions in containment.

‘If we go somewhere intense – “When you go to your vulnerable place” – I move into coping.
‘And that is when you have talked about crying and panic attacks?’


'Yes'



‘When I am at work, I am living/managing.’


‘And you want to spend more time there?’

‘I feel as though family and friends deserve more from me than they are currently getting.’
‘You immediately went to other people’s needs. How do you feel right now?’

‘We are heading into a difficult period of time for me, so it is important that I listen to my needs. To get to a place of management, I need to manage this frustration.’

I explained that I find the level of frustration I am living with offensive, never mind anybody else.

‘Is it about not being able to let some of that out, like the Jenga analogy we talked about before?’

‘Yes.’

I then asked whether the window of tolerance could grow. R asked me to clarify and then said:

‘I almost hear you asking – R, am I ever going to be able to deal with life stuff again?’

‘That is an excellent translation.’
‘When you deal with a traumatic experience, whether that’s a loss or anything else, one more thing can be too much. The straw that breaks the camel’s back, so to speak. As you process it, and come out of it, your ability to deal with stress increases.’
‘Thank you.’

I told R that I was still thinking about Jenga. She told me to let her know.

‘And I feel like I need to say that if you are worried about offending me, I can tolerate a lot.’
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Old 03-27-2019, 08:12 AM #318
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Default Re: In Session Today: Part VI

Last week I had strongly felt my T's love towards me. I felt him "in" the connection. I didn't miss him as much this week and I wasn't as desperate to see him as usual. T said he wondered why his presence in session was something I could take away with me more than usual. I said I just had an image of a loom. And every session I cut the material away to take away with me, and the material is the relationship. If I just have my layer, I cut it away and it just falls to the floor as tangled yarn, but when it is interwoven with his presence, it becomes cloth - something I can cut away and take away with me. I'm describing it much better here because he helped me make sense of it, but I just had the image and he helped me to put words to what it represents.

We talked a lot about how much our relationship has changed over the last 4+ years. He said the relationship feels much more equal, like we are just two fragile, vulnerable people figuring it out together. We talked about making sense of the transference and countertransference together and we do that at quite a deep level because we trust each other.

We talked about how last session had been a connected session and this one feels like a reflective session (though I still felt connected) and we said how that seems to be a kind of mini process we go through within the bigger process.

He asked if I had thought any more about the presence of our animus/anima. I said I had thought about it, but hadn't reached any great insight. He said that's where he was at with it too. I said it rings true somehow but I can't reach it. It's certainly a part of my process.

We talked about some of the things I've been doing and how I wouldn't have had the self-belief to do that stuff before.

We came to the end. I hugged him and said "I love you" and I left.
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Old 03-28-2019, 02:03 AM #319
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Default Re: In Session Today: Part VI

In todays session I arrived and sat down and said hello and talked about my week for a few minutes, and then it was an hour later and it was like I hadn't even been there.
I hate those session most of all. I feel so ripped off.
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Old 03-29-2019, 06:43 AM #320
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Default Re: In Session Today: Part VI

I don't feel like it was a brilliant session. I still don't feel close to him and it's not the same.

>I kept on going on about how he wasn't there for me when I needed him during my crisis.

>He said I wish you would talk to me.

>He finally got in it the end, and asked me how it felt to not have him there. That it was his fault he had not been attuned to me.That he tried to balance talking about the dark stuff without me being overcome by it so tried to keep a light by making jokes.

>I'm allowed to email during his holiday.
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