holding onto connection

tumblr_n548u2fiXb1tvjsowo1_500A lot of my healing and the work I have done since I started therapy has been about connection and learning how to not let the old messages of the past get in the way of that connection.

Connection has been the core of what I have learned over the years, but sometimes those old messages do creep back in and take over, and for me when that happens its really hard to get me back out of that darkness of disconnection.

Since I was little, when I felt disconnected I would change my clothes a lot. I would keep changing my clothes over and over until the feeling went away. Today I still struggle with that.

yesterday morning I got ready for session and as I was heading out the door I got this intense feeling come over me that I needed to change, and I began to not feel good about myself. I knew in that moment this was going to be a hard morning for me.

I went upstairs and changed my clothes and nothing was feeling right! Time was drawing close and I needed to head to my session in order to make it there on time and I knew in that moment there was nothing I could do to change the feeling I was going through.

As I drove to my session the feeling got worse! I began to figit and couldn’t sit still in this disconnection. I was frustrated that I was feeling this way, but at the same time I knew that my therapist is aware of what this means when I go through moments like this, but it didn’t change the fact that I just wanted to go home and be alone in this.

But I didn’t… I showed up to session just as I was. That is the difference between the past and the now – letting someone see me in this moment so that I am not alone in it.

When I feel this way I don’t like to be touched, especially on the back of the arms. I hold my arms close to my body when I am feeling this way and its a challenge to let that go. It doesn’t happen as often as it used to, but when it does, its hard to move out of this.

I showed up to session and shared with him right a way what I was going through, and the first thing he wanted to do to change that was to CONNECT. He asked me to take his hand and BREAK that old message of “when I am feeling this way, I am UN-touchable”.

He wanted to reverse those old messages and create a connection even if it didn’t feel good. Sometimes you have to fake it to move through it.

I know that these moments when this happens are old messages from the past, but I don’t know why it shows up today the way it does. I am still working hard to take those moments of disconnection and self yuck and turn it into “I am worthy and I am touchable and I am connected”.

Still to this day I will go through moments when I change my clothes up to 10 times if need be … and its frustrating.

I will still go through moments of not wanting to be touched on the back of the arms, or looked at, or for anyone to touch me anywhere… but what I do notice is, because I know what it means and where it comes from, I can move through it faster than I used to.

This comes from the past and being abused. When I was abused I would change my clothes a lot because I felt a sense of YUCK after the abuse happened and that feeling has stuck with me my whole life.

These are the things from the past that never truly go away no matter how much healing is done…. but what I do know is, its not so much about making something go away, its more about how to handle these things when it happens. How do I create a connection right in the middle of yuck and disconnection? That is where the healing is!

The healing is not about making something go AWAY, because honestly, it never truly goes away! its about how to manage these moments when they do happen. Its about understanding where it comes from, and to remind myself that “I am not in the abuse any longer” and to allow myself connection in the disconnection that I am feeling.

My therapist always reminds me “you are not what you feel”  and that is what healing is about.. not making it go away, but seeing it differently so that i can move through these moments without disconnecting.

As I sit here this morning I am feeling a lot more connected than I was yesterday and I hope that by talking about it, letting someone be with me in that moment and writing about it, gives me the power over it, instead of it having power over me.

Each time this happens, I will remember how I moved through it the time before – and that is healing!

It never truly goes away, and I think that for anyone who is healing through their past, if you just realize that healing is not about making something go away, that its about making that moment manageable – I think THAT is when true healing happens.

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little book of grace and hope

917088_1421765064750229_1178151065_n I bought this little “cork-board” cover book on clearance the other day and I wanted to create something to capture my favorite words and feelings!

I wasn’t sure how I was going to make this book into something that could be fun, healing, and a place to capture whatever it is that resonates with me in the moment.

So yesterday an hour before leaving for session I got out my “box making tools” and started to create the book to my feelings.

GRACE and HOPE! how appropriate for my journey, and on the inside I put a lot of great quotes that I love that I had left-over from the hope boxes I make, wanting to create a space I could just add thoughts at any time when I am not near my computer.

10249271_511197892325548_611725470_nI brought it into session and of course my therapist loved it! The first question he asked me was “and what was going through your mind when you decided to create this amazing book? did it create more of a connection in the disconnection you feel?

I think for me it is a sense of connection! Since I was 5 years old I have been all about words and meaning! Creativity and writing and drawing has been a huge part of who I am and who I have become. Anyplace that I can capture a meaning is healing for me.

“All glory comes from daring to begin”

Paper was my outlet when I was little, and anytime I could get my hands on a stack of paper,  it was like gold to me! A blank canvas to create something that no one could take away from me! My thoughts and my feelings that were mine and none for the taking from the abusers in my life.

I have created many journals in therapy .. in fact on my therapist desk sits a “TIMELINE” journal that we started to work on years ago (before chaos took place and we had to attend to another issue at the time) that was a book about the timeline of my childhood and how writing out the timeline of the abuse was healing but painful work.

I also have journal book that my therapist and I used to use in session where I would write something before session and then leave the book with him and he would write something positive in the book to give back to me at next session.

So creating books and places to put feelings and emotions has always been a healing thing for me. It only made sense to start this hope and grace book to hold all the words and meanings that help me everyday on this journey of healing.

“What lies behind us, and what lies before us, are small matters compared to what lies within us”

1277374_753110248063291_5667498701725970600_oWhen I see a blank canvas, its almost like a place of hope to where I can put something out there to be known without there being consequences; a place of vulnerability to be seen and heard, and yet at the same time creating hope for myself.

I am surprised I don’t have books out yet. I am still working on my book called “alone in the closet” .. I put it aside a year ago because I wasn’t quite ready to face the words to the abuse yet, but in the meantime, these are the books I do create.

I think what I will do with this book is take a moment every morning (after my physical morning workout) and just see what hits me at the time – whether it be a favorite quote I love, or a verse from the bible that seems to fit the day, or even just put down my feelings at the time.

I plan to take this book to therapy from time to time and share the thoughts inside as it can be very helpful to the journey I am on… or maybe even let my therapist add to it along side of our work.

Maybe take it to church and sit with it and just draw or write whatever thoughts come to mind.

I look at this book as being just like my blog, only I can hold it in my hands!

I can’t wait to see what fills this book, and maybe I will share it from time to time as it fills up.

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five minute friday {mess}

278024_441388179215763_827778536_o Welcome to Five Minute Friday to where us bloggers are given a word prompt and write for just 5 minutes simply for the joy of writing.

No editing or backtracking. No need to be perfect. Just words freely flowing from my heart to yours. Set the timer and write away! Stop at the 5 minute mark no matter where you are!

Today’s Five minute Friday word is {MESS}

{Start}

When I saw that the Five minute Friday word was MESS, the first thing that came to my mind was a quote by a writer name Jeff Goins and that quote is:

change always happens when you come down from the clouds & deal with the messiness of life“.

That is such a strong and true quote!

Right now I am struggling with connection, and maybe in order to get reconnected to self and those around me, I need to dive right into the messiness of what is causing me disconnection.

Maybe the answer is found in sitting right in the middle of the mess instead of trying to run from it or hide from the disconnection that has found me. Maybe it’s here for a reason.

Sometimes I just want to isolate into a small ball and just wait for the storm of disconnection to pass – but maybe its not about getting small, maybe I can get big in disconnection.

When you run from a dog, it’s first instinct is to chase you because your showing fear and running from something, but if you slow down, breathe, and walk along side of the feelings that are here –  the dog is more likely to walk along side of you instead of chasing you.

I think connection is the same thing! We fight against our feelings and emotions so much that it chases us down and wears us thin to the point of “becoming” the disconnection instead of working with it and understanding it.

I think that is what the past week has been for me. I am trying so hard to NOT be disconnected that I am not paying attention to what is causing me to feel disconnected. I am allowing the disconnection to disconnect me.

So, I am going to hold this quote today and come down from the clouds of isolation and disconnection and face what is here, and why its here, and maybe instead of being chased by the dog, I can walk along side of my disconnection giving it less power over me, so that I can connect back to self and those around me who love and care for me.

Its hard when the weight of the past and the old messages tell me “you need to run and hide“… but a part of this process is about changing those messages and saying “NO, I am not going to isolate and get small, I am going to get big right in the middle of the mess!”

My therapist and I work incredibly hard on connection – connection has been the CORE of our work in therapy, and at the same time, there are times when I struggle and become disconnected, but I think if I really start to understand where the disconnection comes from, than maybe the next time this happens, I can breathe and walk through it knowing that the fight back is about being IN it, and not trying to run away or out of it.

{END}

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