Standing in Total Wonder

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For the first time in ages I’ve got a whole day to myself! I love my boyfriend and I love my friends and family, but my alone time is almost sacred to me. It’s pure bliss, to lie in and then laze around in the sunshine that shines onto me through our blinds at this time in the morning. It’s not every day, or even every week or month sometimes… but times when I get to just be me, me on my own in my own space and own head… it’s bliss.

It’s also the only time when I get the urge to write. I check my reader almost ever day and I comment sometimes on other blogs, but it feels impossible for me to write when I’m not alone. Even if I’m in the bath or if he’s doing something else away from me… no. For me to write, I need space, quiet, and aloneness. So here I am.

Recently, life feels like a lot has changed even though it doesn’t look that different. I need to write about it. So, therapy.

After the new year, T and I talked about cutting down face to face sessions. Last year, we had been meeting weekly (full session) and then also speaking weekly (half session). Then, in the run up to Christmas, life got so busy that the half sessions just sort of stopped without a plan or a decision. They just weren’t there anymore. I also felt like our face to face sessions were becoming a bit pointless – we weren’t talking about anything that I felt was ‘proper therapy’… so we talked about steps down from therapy.

I cannot do boundaries, enforcements or absolutes, so we made a plan that was just a rough guide. Not to be stuck to. Alternating sessions – one week face to face, one week on the phone. We would keep our weekly session time, so if I needed to go in instead of call, or if I really didn’t fancy going in, we could be flexible.

First week was a disaster. I tried to force myself into absolutely no contact with T between our sessions. Panic, tears, tantrums… and I went in for our supposed first phone session. I was panicked that, by going in, I would never be able to cut down sessions – almost as if failing once would mean I would never be able to succeed. But, since then, we’ve alternated sessions. In fact, since January, I think I’ve seen her three times. Three times in two months. Obviously we’ve spoken in between those times, but that feels like a huge step. It feels hard to be proud of myself when technically I’m still in as much therapy as I was before, but it’s different. And it’s progress.

It seemed to work after our discussion during the session when I went in when I wasn’t planning to. We talked, really openly and honestly, about what had gone wrong… and T suggested that both she and I had been looking at it the wrong way. We had been considering how to help me separate, but that was wrong – what we needed what to help me carry our immense and beautiful connection to wherever I was. To stretch the invisible ties between us as far as I wanted to go. The next step shouldn’t be about separation, it should be about connection.

T asked me to ‘consciously email’ rather than banning myself from emailing. She suggested that every time Little even vaguely wanted to contact her, I just let her. So that’s where we are – and it’s working fine. I still feel really connected, our relationship feels as strong as ever (if not even stronger because we’re really doing this – I’m moving on, growing up!) and I’m still balanced. I’m still well.

I went to see her for our session last week and it was weird to be back in my space on the sofa after 21 days. Really weird. It took me a while to slip back in to feeling at home with her… but she came to my sofa for a cuddle and it all slotted back into place. I think we will reach a place where our face to face sessions are purely a time for Little,Β  whilst our phone sessions are a time for adult me. That feels really, genuinely okay. Really good πŸ™‚

R and I have also re – looked at our therapy sessions together. We’ve made them very strictly once every month, same time same place, and that is feeling really good, too. She’s an incredible support and a wonderful person – that pillar of my support base is as strong as ever.

GP and I are in contact regularly, but I didn’t see him for over 6 weeks, and that felt really okay. He was a constant, guiding support through my dad’s illness and treatment (thankfully all over for the moment, now) but I haven’t needed him in such an intensive way. That also feels okay.

Sometimes there are wobbles but so far, 2016 has brought huge progress with regards to me and therapy. Or I guess, WE’VE brought huge progress. Between T, R, GP and I, we are all working really hard to keep our connections and relationships as I test out what it’s like to be further away from their bases of safety and as I try out what it’s like to be a bit more independently responsible for my own wellbeing. At times it’s hard work, and it’s BEEN really almost impossible work in the past, but right now it’s really paying off.

I feel like these words from my favourite poet really sum everything up right now:

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So true. Right now I am standing in total wonder πŸ™‚

x

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15 responses »

  1. Great to read. It seems so right, that they are standing exactly where they’ve always been and allowing you the freedom to venture in and out as needed. The difference I see in you from last year is like night and day, and something just seems to have clicked for you. Do you know what that something was? Do you feel like you don’t need therapy anymore? (as in not having anything you need to process anymore).

    • Thank you πŸ™‚ yes it definitely feels like something just clicked. Hard to know what though. Fundamentally I think it was that I had questioned and tested and prodded and poked my relationship with T and GP (and R to an extent) so often and so thoroughly that one day I just believed they’re going to stay. I think I always thought I would repeatedly and endlessly ask those ‘do you care’ ‘are you leaving me’ ‘will you forget about me’ questions, I never thought there would be an end. Then suddenly there was. Almost not with any fanfare or sudden realisation – just one day I realised I didn’t need to ask them anymore.

      We talked in a lot of depth and over a lot of occasions about what would happen when I left therapy, so I think it helped to know that they’re in this for as long as I want them to be. That our relationship can be different but lifelong if I need it. Maybe that was the turning point.

      I don’t feel like I need to be in therapy anymore, except for stability and regularity. It keeps me stable and that’s worth paying the money for!! I think I will probably cut down gradually in steps until one day there are maybe 3 month gaps. Then I might stay there forever! Who knows?

      • This is therapy at its best. How amazing to give someone that kind of stability. I wonder if they know what a gift that is?
        I do miss reading about your sessions though! 😁

      • I’m not sure whether they ever could, because unless you have felt the absolute crippling agony of insecure attachments, I’m not sure you truly get it. I hope that they both have benefited from a securely attached life in which case they probably won’t get how important their love is to me… but I work damn hard to show them.

        I really miss blogging but my life is so much less easy to write about now – it certainly wouldn’t be very interesting to read!! I am going to try to keep writing though because I do love it so. And I read everyone else’s blogs still. πŸ™‚

      • I’m really glad your life is calmer. That’s lovely. Did you find that as you began to internalise a secure attachment that the past stuff just didn’t make you feel as bad anymore? I’m wondering if the past hurts so much simply because of the ache and loss of secure attachement?

      • I think past trauma and abuse is always going to feel awful – it’s never going to feel ‘okay’. But I think being heard, being believed, and being allowed to share and tell and cry and shout about it without being made to feel guilt or shame or fear definitely has made my past trauma less of a daily focus. It used to be there wherever I was – now it’s not. It will always be there but in a different way I think.

      • It’s really good to hear this. It gives me hope and also some idea of what it might feel like in the future. πŸ™‚

  2. Wow. Just wow. I feel so in awe of you and how much you have grown and healed in the last year. You sound good, really, really good. I’m so glad for you. πŸ˜ƒ All the hard work you’ve put in has really paid off. I read this and you sound so very peaceful. You deserve that. Xx

    • Thank you πŸ™‚ yeah, it feels good for it all to have paid off. It damn nearly killed me on a number of occasions so it’s good to feel a positive outcome for all our hard work.

      Not to say there won’t ever be hard times again, but the good definitely outweighs the bad… which is what I will try to hold on to when things feel crap again!

  3. I read this and feel so impressed–such a thoughtful approach! At the same time, to be honest, it makes me feel anxious to even think about reducing my contact with E. But I’m at a very needy stage just now; I hope in time I will be able to experience something similar to what you are doing!

    • If you’d asked me even 6 months ago I would have told you I was never, ever, EVER cutting down therapy sessions. At that point we were doing a total of 2 hours a week. Now we’re doing 1 and I don’t even see her every other week. It changed so quickly but so perfectly x

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