I had an exhausting but very productive session with my therapist this morning. It left me unable to do a great lot more than sit around and think about what we discussed. Because of that, I really don’t feel like writing a great lot. I did learn some rather important lessons, though, the most important being allowing yourself to express deep emotions rather than waiting until the pressure builds to the point that you *have* to do something about it.
Over the past couple of years, I’ve had some pesky little emotions that sneaked up and rather attacked me, leaving me in tears or shaking with fear or anger. *Something* didn’t feel right, though, other than the obvious unpleasantness of the emotions. I got things off my chest, as the saying goes, but I felt little to no sense of release. This got right up my nose– why should I go through with expressing the silly things if it wasn’t going to help anyway?!? As it turns out, the fact that I was fighting tooth and nail to keep things under control even in the midst of what I consider a breakdown defeated the purpose in the first place.
I explained to the therapist that, even though I’m now relatively aware of how I feel about certain issues in my life, I can’t seem to express those feelings. Grief, although it is a highly individual process, often involves tears, anger, guilt, and other assorted ever-so-comfortable feelings. Because of my sra background, emotions were once a foreign language to me. Because of the punishment involved in expressing ‘weakness’ through tears, just the thought of crying made me dissociate. For the most part, those challenges have been put aside.
Now it’s just a matter of letting go. I’ve been over-analysing and searching everywhere for the right process to spark the right emotional release to help me deal with grief. As it turns out, every bit of that was a façade– I was denying my grief by working on it intellectually and ignoring it emotionally. Many, many times people I love told me that allowing myself to feel my grief and facing it head on was the key to moving past it. Today, I realised that they were absolutely right. It’s not a matter of being overcome by emotions; it’s a matter of simply letting go and allowing them to happen (in a safe place, of course).
Letting go. I got a bit of a laugh out of the fact that, in this case, the right action seems to be suspending action. Sitting there in the safety of my therapist’s office, I could feel myself drifting into relaxation and relief as I listened to her suggestion to just let go. For the first time that phrase felt more like peace than fear.