Much of this past year has been intensely triggering. Nightmares have become a staple, with the 2020 version of I forgot to do my homework being I find myself in a huge crowd without a mask.
The pot has been stirred, anxiety rising to the top like scum on a pond.
Ideally, it would be splendid to have a partner during this difficult time. However, my current situation remains very much me, myself and I.
Rather than lament this fact, I have decided to embrace it. A daily studio practice, longer walks with Kumo, a return to reading. And a little bit of internal housekeeping.
Counseling has gotten me through the past fifteen years. However, some months ago I became aware that perhaps I needed a deeper dive. My friend Jim is a trauma therapist and he introduced me to the concept of EMDR. Initially I was skeptical–what is this woowoo shit? However, I am also willing to give almost anything a try. And so I did. At first it felt like an exercise in futility–keep in mind these sessions are virtual. I would talk about something, the therapist would wave a pencil back and forth (which I tracked with my eyes) and then ask me how I felt. The unfiltered response would have been something akin to WTF.
However I was committed to giving it a chance. And, to my everlasting surprise, after session three something shifted.
Sometimes I like to take an edible late in the evening. That way, just as I go to bed, the high kicks in. Before drifting off to sleep I let my thoughts unspool. On this particular evening I was recalling some things from long, long ago. And I had an aha moment.
There was a traumatic event in my childhood that correlated perfectly with a similar situation in adulthood. So perfectly that I felt a little amazed that I had never made this connection before.
It felt like solving a puzzle. And, as puzzles go, completing this section meant some other pieces fell into place.
At the crux of all this are some serious issues surrounding ownership. And trust. If I can recognize and heal some of the wounds from childhood, I can better control how I respond to that which is hurtful now.
I’ve got my work cut out for me. And all those empty squares on my calendar mean that I am going to have plenty of time in which to do it.