This blog is rather multifunctional, but one of the primary reasons I write is because I’m on a healing journey and I write to chronicle the journey, in hopes that the things I’m learning about during this process might be useful to someone in their own healing journey. It’s not so much a “how-to” heal from trauma, because I don’t think there is any one way to heal. It’s just my journey of healing that is unique to me as yours is to you and this is the (sometimes very winding) path my journey is taking me.
I have a LOT of search engine hits coming under “complex-PTSD or borderline personality disorder” and “Hashimoto’s and Bipolar” I’m not the only one who discovered the connections between them and are probably worried about it. After all, one label in each pair carries much more stigma than the other. But, for me, the labels don’t matter. I read about ALL of it, and take help wherever I can get it.
At some point, I ought to change the name of this blog, because The Sprightly Writer is kind of misleading. I’m not a ‘real’ writer as someone commented to me (though it kind of sat nicely for a minute); at least insomuch as never having been published (though that might change). But I’m a ‘real’ writer in that I write from the heart, as authentically as my level of development allows me to write. I may actually get my ADD-ish brain together enough to publish some day. Maybe.
I don’t think anyone truly wants to be diagnosed with mood disorders, but I’m pretty sure they want healing from their capricious moods whatever the cause, just like I did when I first started out. I wanted to share what I’ve picked up in my journey, and also help me find my resources again, so I can refer back to them as well.
I don’t particularly believe in the concept of mental illness as commonly thought of, for as Jiddu Krishamurti said,
“It is no measure of health to be well-adjusted to a profoundly sick society”
The term ‘mental illness’ carries such a devastating stigma to it, still. Like R.D. Laing and Thomas Szasz, however, I am not inclined to believe in the myth of mental illness
Everything I write about on this blog is ultimately to serving an underlying personal goal – to make something beautiful out of the dung of the crazy things I’ve experienced. It’s not always been easy, but I know creative expression is one of the major ways for me to organize my thinking and assist me on my healing journey. So I write about the messiness of my life, take photographs, and share lessons and heal myself while I leave crumbs for other people to find and hopefully make their way out of the dense thickets they find themselves stuck in.
Or so I hope, anyway.
And the above was just a major preamble to what I’m going to talk about today. Today is a continuation of my blocked energy. A more specific look at it and what I’m working on.
This morning, before my husband went off to work, he gave me a craniosacral therapy session. To understand what this is, you can read a bit about this on his Touch of Excellence webpage about craniosacral therapy.
It may not come as a surprise that while I fully believe in the therapeutic benefits of craniosacral therapy, my personal experience of it with my husband has not been as healing as I know it can be. And the reason does not lie with my husband, because I know he’s done some amazing work for people. He’s very intuitive and loving (now) and people have had some very interesting releases of blocked emotional energy.
But when he’s worked on me, we’ve discovered that I’m blocking him and preventing a therapeutic release of trapped energy up around my heart, neck and head. I feel very unusual sensations when he’s in those areas. I feel a warmth from his hands, but also a congestion. I feel discomfort and a feeling of…well, strangulation, I think, in the tissue of my chest, neck and head.
I have an idea why I feel this. There was an incident with my mother and my second oldest sister and I that was pretty verbally and physically violent and ended up with my mother’s hand at my throat and pushed up against a wall with her other hand poised to strike me on the face (and my mother had these solidly heavy hands that felt like a brick when I got slapped). It scared me when that happened, but at 24 years old, I was plenty big enough to do something about it. My response was to steel myself, stare deep into my mother’s eyes, and dare her to hit me. She came to her senses and dropped her hand, and told me she wanted me gone before she came home from work, otherwise all my belongings would be out on the lawn. I moved out of my home that day.
I would guess that this incident has a LOT to do with my current fears.
But like I mentioned in my previous post, I get on the verge to Something Big, and then I back away from it. I think that’s what happens with him, as well. We talked about it, and we concluded that my mind sabotages this process. I get distracted, I start thinking about things and he says he feels I lose the connection to my body, and to him. I think I may be having trouble trusting him because of our past. In addition to having his drinking binges, he had a history of walking away from me, usually either drunk, or to go drink. A number of times he’d take off in the middle of an argument, or he’d walked off from my mother’s house, or his own birthday party, or left me on 22nd street in Chinatown at 10:30 at night because he was driving drunk and he was getting road ragey and I didn’t like it. So he thought he’d teach me a lesson by driving around the block. Instead, he accidentally drove onto the expressway and proceeded to get lost. A friend of ours had to come pick me up.
I WANT to trust my husband, and he has been working on his own issues, so I KNOW I can start trusting him. The rest of me just hasn’t caught up yet.
I have a LONG history of being abandoned and pushed away.
My mother divorced my dad when I was 2, and though he tried very hard to keep us in his life, my mother managed to get us away from him nearly permanently when I was 11. My mother’s final rejection of me was just the final straw for a lifetime of other kinds of emotional abandonment and abuse. My step-dad never really accepted me, and I never accepted him, so I didn’t feel abandoned. My grandfather wrote me a letter once where he told me he was ashamed of me, and that after all my mother gave me (financially, etc), I was an incorrigible ingrate and he was considering disowning me.
I come from a financially wealthy, but spiritually bankrupt family. I married someone who, though I loved him very much, was in denial for a very long time about his own dysfunctions. We didn’t know how to get the help we both desperately needed. We fell on hard times financially due to his dual layoffs from his engineering job, which increased our problems. There was a time when neither one of us was working for just about 2 years. Yes, that was a very hard time for us.
I’m working very intensely on my recovery, though I don’t always think I’m getting very far. I know NONE of what happened to me in the past matters, and that I’ve been carrying this stuff far too long. But it’s just the utter overwhelming feelings of it all I can’t shake. Not just what was done to me, but what I’d done to me trying to cope with it all.
Last night, during my adult child of alcoholics meeting, that I wasn’t sure I was going to go to until I was deeply moved by a fellow blogger’s post who is himself recovering from alcoholism, I revealed a few things about my past that I was pretty sure is interfering with my life and my healing process. I wanted them to know these things that are devastating to me on a spiritual level. That do block healing. I told them how I feel like all the things that have happened get in the way of me being a good person. Sometimes I have a voice in my head that will say, “people think you are such a good person, but you really aren’t. you’ve done some pretty shitty things and if they only knew the truth, they’d reject you too…”
So, I fronted it. I told them the things I’d done. I’d confessed to them because I know in order to really get the benefit out of the group, I couldn’t NOT tell them how deep into trouble I’d gotten myself and how I felt that the ACoA group was pretty much the last stop for me.
I shared with them, through my tears, that if anyone else had told me what I told them, I’d have NO problems accepting and loving them, no matter what. But that when it came time to giving myself the same grace and love, I couldn’t. That in the private spaces of my heart, I didn’t feel like I deserved healing, or love, or even Life.
Another blogger, Michael, who has gone through A Course in Miracles and A Course in Love, had given me some courage to speak these things to them when he said,
“[there are] No mistakes in former lives. No hell. No balance or score to settle. No failure or judgment. Nothing that is not forgivable. Acceptance of who you are (truly), or resistance to it. The answer to this question is the scene we paint with the oil colors of our being.”
And I so I’m taking this message from the angel Michael to heart. Oh, and don’t tell him I told you I think he’s an angel in the guise of an engineer. On second thought, DO tell him I said that, I think he ought to know.
I mentioned to the group that for all the intellectual understanding I have of grace, I find it very hard to have it for myself. My group responded with compassion and love, and said some really affirming things to me in the “burning desires” section of the meeting (I’m not sure what that is, exactly, but it’s another opportunity to speak after everyone has spoken). They told me that I can have faith in the promises of ACoA, and that if I stick with the program, I’ll start to heal those deep wounds.
I was also told by a very kind, older woman after the group meeting was over, “yes, you understand it in your head, but it’s time to get it into your heart”.
I believe the energy that is trapped in my head, neck and chest prevents this understanding from moving into the rest of my being. But I’ll be thinking about this more and seeing what might help those ‘restrictions’ as they are called in craniosacral work to release.
After the ACoA meeting last night, I went to the coffee shop and brought my journals. I didn’t realize I slipped in some articles from Gede Prama’s Songs of Compassion that I printed out. I was surprised they were there and very grateful, too. I sipped my tea, relaxed, and read. Interestingly enough, I almost felt like Gede was sitting with me, talking to me and trying to help me out. I read and listened very carefully and I took notes.
I’m going to share those links right now, because I think it’s so important for others on their healing journey. I’m going to add them to my holistic healing for PTSD up on my blog, because I want more people to know about these articles.
I have a little ‘action plan’ thanks to Gede Prama.
1. Accept, flow, smile.
2. Spend at least 3x a week walking in Nature.
3. Become well-connected, because then it is easier to access the energy of healing that is available in Nature.
4. Since you can not go back in time to change the past, learn to embrace the past.
5. Focus on the lesson, not the person who harms.
6. Plant the seeds of forgiveness. Water them with acceptance.
7. Be mindful to self-conversation, it’s the conversation with the Universe.
8. Understand that pain, suffering and sadness are only messengers of the inner, pointing the way to go much deeper.
9. Go much deeper.
and this last one, I’m going to quote verbatim:
10. “Generate strong intention to help in your field. If you are a writer, you can write with the intention to help, a mother can take good care of children like treating the babies of angels, if you are a rich person can donate some of your wealth into scholarship for the poor. In this way you do not only heal yourself, but also make the journey of your soul much more mature. At the end, you are part of the effort to make this planet a home of angels.”
At this point, I wanted to make a public thank you to Gede Prama for helping me in my journey. I do feel that you are doing amazing work there on your blog. Bless you and your work.
I know I still have a ways to go, but I can honestly say, I’m feeling better than I have in a long time. I’m feeling safe and connected with people, both online, and in my recovery group. I know I’ll be getting around to feeling more connected to my husband, too, as I continue on this journey.
I hope to continue to bless my readers and those people searching and finding my blog with something that they might find will help them in their lives.