Saturday, March 26, 2011
Skinning Me Alive
Today in therapy I was given a guided visualization. I asked for it. My therapist didn't want to do it, calling it "ooga booga" (witch doctor reference?). It was something he used to do a long time ago and didn't do anymore. He went down a few different roads first before he relented.
He had me move my awareness through my body and ground my root to the core of the earth. He put me in the woods of an earlier time and had me come to a castle with a mote, a closed draw bridge and guards in front. He asked me visualize getting inside the castle. There was more to the story but it is this point I want to talk about.
My first inclination was to sneak into the castle, or to enter by some wizard/superpower mechanism. This speaks of my fear of authority, need to be exceptional, and the demigod like fantasies of my child hood. I took a moment to try a different way. I simply walked up to the castle and announced myself. The exercise of entering on my own merits as just a person, was emotionally painful. Some where along the way I learned that I was not good enough. That I was not welcome. The possibility of being accepted bypassed so many defenses that I felt vulnerable. It was more scary than imagining fighting through all of the guards and swimming through the mote and up a secret sewage spillway. I don't want to spend my life, not even a pretend life making things hard for myself. Being direct and honest may not give me what I want, but sneaking around or relying on my exceptional "super powers" has not really been working out either.
I am considering a different sort of life, one that does not require the armor of my grandiosity.
There is so much in this life that I can not control. I have tried so hard to control people's reactions, manufacture acceptance, sneak past their own defenses just so I would feel safe. The reality is that I can handle rejection. That someone, that some group, or some institution might not accept me, has become less fearful. I now have the choice to walk in the sunlight, up to the gates of another's castle/personal-sovereignty and conduct my life as if I have a right to live. That it is ok to win and it is ok to fail. I'm scared and sad and just can not get out of my big heavy rhino hide fast enough. I have some very good hands that are skinning me alive, and I could not be more grateful. Thank god for healers and therapists.
Posted by John Ellsworth at 11:57 PM