I saw my therapist today. I’d been anticipating the appointment for ages, eager to relinquish a lot of deep seated grief and confusion compounded by an unrelenting trigger. One that I’ve never articulated before. As my car was under going work for its WOF, I had use of S’s car – as long as I dropped him at work. The drive from the city was good because it allowed me to focus on driving only and not my anxiety that had been gradually building in the lead up to today.
I arrived nearly an hour early, but fortunately her office is within the Womens Centre, so I was able to relax on a sofa with a cup of tea. The waiting time didn’t help with my anxiety and I was self conscious that I was breathing like Darth Vader while I waited. In fact I started to reconsider bringing up anything that might make me uncomfortable.
As luck would have it, her previous client had to leave early, so she invited me in to start early. I felt myself go off on a tangent about irrelevant things – anything to detract from the fears inside.
But I intend to use therapy to benefit me and I need to work on my issues – although it feels easier to shun anything that’s painful or uncomfortable, ultimately I end up feeling better when I’ve been honest.
So I described in vivid detail the trigger. The aspects that frighten me most, the lingering feeling of fear and sadness so intense it’s breath taking.
I’m confused about how this particular trigger has come about. I’m also unsure why it’s bothering me so much now. I can’t think of anything that’s happened recently that would effectively trigger the trigger!
During our analysis of the trigger, I moved through a raft of feelings. The predominant one was sadness, but I also felt at times angry, confused and very small. Child like, fragile, exposing a great vulnerability to my therapist. The tendency to disassociate lingered ever stronger, and the urge to babble about less relevant things sometimes took over. I felt my insides creep and crawl. I wanted answers from my therapist – I wanted to see the horrific car crash – but what if I saw something so disturbing- I’d never be able to forget it?
My therapist told me some insightful experiences she’d had and tried to find a thread on which I could gently pull and unravel the darkest places in my heart.
Although I’ve been unable to attach the trigger to anything, I certainly feel like my insides were scraped out. I feel like I may have been on the precipice of something both profound and heartbreaking.
When I left the session and drove home, I felt sick. Completely nauseous to my stomach, uncomfortable, awkward. A surface had been scratched and the feeling of deep sadness and shame has long since lingered with me.
I’m tired, more than usual after a session. A dull headache throbs. I want to sleep, really to avoid the feelings. Yet I also want to sleep to remember.
There is nothing as frightening and frustrating as wanting memories so badly – but fearing them with great velocity. An inner turmoil so great, I can quite empathise with the drinkers and the drug takers.
I need to be ready to pick up the kids soon. I need to be able to put this session aside and be present.
I feel raw and alone with this.