Today is Tuesday, it is the 19th day of July. It is the year 2016…
I had to have help remembering that today. I could readily remember it was Tuesday because I had made that comment when I first walked in. I was asked how I was doing. And my reply was, “It’s Tuesday and I’m here.”
She kind of smiled at my reply and I added that I was okay, but mostly it’s Tuesday and I’m here. So I’m fine… The brain is such a powerful tool. I know this, I can feel this. But I forget sometimes. Today I was reminded with such fanfare just how powerful it really is.
I came with no expectations, I actually really didn’t know what I even wanted to talk about. And so I made a comment about my hair, about being cute wearing a hat and that it’s been busy. Since having the foster kiddos placed, its been a lot of busy and a lot of noise. I don’t mean just noise from having three under five, but noise from just not being able to shut my brain off from all of the crap that is going on in it. It has been so noisy that my sleep has been suffering and my usual productiveness has slimmed down to just being slightly productive.
I’ve realized that my ability to calm and center myself has fallen to the wayside. It’s weird how issues in the world and the things I’m dealing with inside my own home and inside of my head are all playing off of each other and making me feel anxious and unsure of myself. I realized this when I drove past a couple of state troopers and my heart rate instantly spiked. I gave myself a hard talk that day and decided it was time to disconnect from certain things and reconnect with me. And so, as I was supposed to be editing a recent photo session I stopped, turned on a PBS show and just let it watch me & I took a lot of deep breaths. As I sat there haphazardly sprawled all over the chair uncomfortably, I massaged my shoulders and took long deep breaths. And then I half crawled, half dragged myself off of the chair and went into my room and put on shorts.
As this PBS show played and watched me I went through a series of yoga moves and realized my body just needed to be there where it was in that moment. I ended in a downward dog asana and for a solid 60 seconds all thoughts disappeared and I was only present to that moment. My shoulders no longer hurt, my heart no longer felt heavy and I had a very different view to the process. It was in those moments that I realized I was letting the world into my space and so I thought, after my realization, that I had it under control again. That is until I went to therapy and started talking about having gone to court for the kiddos on Monday.
Sometimes I don’t easily correlate the way I feel with underlying things that I haven’t dealt with. I was explaining how frustrated I was and how a few things felt off and she, well, she instantly read all of it and I thought my world was crumbling around me. I could see the shit falling out of the box as she reached up and just dragged it off the shelf.
SHIT! I wasn’t expecting that. My vision goes blurry and I become quiet. I can barely talk above a whisper and my answers, thoughts and ideas get lost in translation. I guess that’s true… yes, I think that’s true but…
“Iiona, what are you feeling right now?
Ummm, I… I’m frustrated and sad and I’m frustrated that I’m sad. I feel like I should be crying buckets of tears but it seems stupid to be crying.
“You said earlier that Love is an action, and with that in mind what do you think you can do to show yourself Love right now?”
I… I… Maybe not beat myself up over this. But why cry.
“What would it feel like to just cry right now?”
“Okay, I will walk with you.”
That was my way to put a pause on the way the conversation was going. I needed a moment, shit I needed about 20 moments but I only had like two. So I used them wisely by breathing deeply while standing in the bathroom stall. Needless to say that moment did not stop the anxiety attack I was trying to prevent. I was too late. It did however come on with no warning signs that I’m used to. No metal taste in my mouth, no tensing of muscles before hand, just a quick SHIT! And then full blown panic attack. I’m still trying to figure out if this is better or worse than what I’m used to. I’m not sure, what I am sure of is it hurt… A lot… My whole body just hurt.
“Iiona, Iiona you don’t need to go there to that moment. Please keep your eyes open and stay present with me here. Is there anything you need?”
Oh God! I don’t know. SHIT! This fucking hurts. I… I just need a moment.
And so I took 30 minutes, 30 moments of time to gather myself. To feel the intensity of each time my body tensed. To breath in deep, hold it and then exhale all of it. To be given help in remembering that “Today is Tuesday, it is the 19th day of July. It is the year 2016…” and to find solace in the small moments that we shared before I left.
Today is session 13 of 15, almost 17 weeks of letting a stranger into the deepest and darkest part of my mind, body and spirit. Because therapy is a full body experience, no part of you is left untouched. Because I’ve talked about things with her that has never crossed my lips and possibly that will be the last time they cross my lips. Some of those things that crossed my lips left me feeling broken and in small pieces. Pieces that took minutes, hours, days, weeks, months to put back together.
But the difference in putting them together this time was they were put together in LOVE. I am learning to love myself in, during and through this process. It’s hard, I spent the first part of my life being told that I was not wanted nor loved. I’m lucky I’ve had people to fill in the gaps for me, because they were able to show me how much I was loved even if the person I was seeking it from could not nor wanted to offer it.
Today I had a few hard moments, the whole day wasn’t hard just certain parts of it…
“Today is Tuesday, it is the 19th day of July. It is the year 2016…”