Feelings

It will be three weeks until I see her again.  She’s on holidays now.  I’m mostly ok with that.  I haven’t seen my new therapist enough to have any attachment issues. I’m hoping it will stay that way.  That kind of stuff is too hard for me to handle successfully.

When I walked into the room I noticed she had art supplies on a table.  Some large sheets of paper and different types of drawing mediums.  We started to talk about feelings, one of my least favorite topics.  Questions are asked that I can’t answer.  “How do you feel about that?” “How does that feel to you?”  “What are you feeling now?” My least favorite question from a therapist, “Where in your body do you feel that?”

We sat down at the table.  She asked me to test out the different drawing materials.  The ones I liked best were the chalk pastels.  They are soft and light.  She showed me different ways of using them.  It was interesting because an artist I am not.  My skill is nothing more than scribbles and stick men.

After a bit the therapist asked me to draw the feelings she named.  How they would look to me.  It sounds difficult and was in many ways but I tried not to over think it.  The first emotion was happiness.  I drew a simple standard happy face.  The second one was joy.  I drew a pine tree with roots.  Funny thing though, it was the therapist who noticed the roots not me.   Joy to me is so much more than happiness.  To me it’s deeper than happiness.  Not as dependent on outside circumstance.  We talked about this for a while.  The third emotion was gladness.  I drew a couple of lines that went slightly upwards.

The last emotion that we talked about near the end of the session was fear.  It took me longer to try to draw this because it’s something I’d rather avoid at all costs.  The picture I scribbled was larger than the others.  It was red, yellow and orange with a small black dot in the center.  The small black dot was me being overwhelmed and swallowed by the fear. Fear making me non-existent.  By the time I finished it I was anxiety filled.  She kept reminding me that I was in a safe place.  Maybe my surroundings were safe but nothing inside felt safe. I did find it quite amazing what my the therapist saw in the picture.  She even noticed the way my hand drew the picture. With energy and short choppy strokes.

We talked about the photo for a short bit and then time was up.  I was glad to leave and leave the picture behind.

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This entry was posted in Anxiety, Control, Conversation, Fear, Panic, Terror, Therapist, Therapy, trauma, Trust, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Feelings

  1. Did you know that art would be used as a medium in your therapy? Even with some basic art experience, I would have been freaked out if that had been me. Kudos to you for keeping it together and being able to focus your thoughts to draw something meaningful.

    About the attachment thing, I think you can do therapy without getting swallowed whole by the therapeutic relationship. After my first therapist, I didn’t think this was true, but I feel like I’ve been able to work with my new therapist, rely on him some, but also rely on myself to manage through issues. Perhaps it’s not all healthy ways, but I feel like I’m finding my way without succumbing to that overboard attachment that makes your heart wrench.

    So have faith – you CAN do this. Btw, have I mentioned lately how proud I am of you?

    • lostinamaze says:

      Yes I did. She specializes in art therapy. It is scary but it’s the one thing that helps me express what I otherwise can’t. Never in a million years would I’ve thought this would help me. But it can be hard to draw or in my case it’s more like scribbling, when someone’s watching!
      I really hope you’re right about the attachment because that’s how I would like it to be.
      Thank you for the encouragement. It’s very much needed.

  2. WillSpirit says:

    I like your graphical descriptions of those emotions. The sketching sounds like a valuable exercise. I agree in particular with your characterization of Joy as opposed to happiness. I would go so far as to say that one can begin to feel Joy even in the midst of Fear. For me, Joy comes from full appreciation of living. And that means full acceptance of life’s uncertainty and ultimate ending in deterioration/death. Fear of these difficulties cannot be avoided, but it can be embraced. And with the embrace comes a sense of connection with all the apprehension and suffering that exists worldwide. One can feel less alone, and hence less fearful, by recognizing these painful states of mind as natural and universal. Joy arises when we realize we are part of something magnificent, vast, and sacred, even (or especially) when life hurts and frightens us.

    • lostinamaze says:

      I agree with your description of joy. I hope one day I can embrace the fear instead of avoiding it. It is a big part of my existence in many ways and it is part of our emotional make up. Until I can embrace all my emotions fully I cannot live fully.

  3. therapyaddict says:

    Art in therapy makes me nervous, primarily because an artist I am not! I think it would be interesting to try though – and am glad that it helped a bit with where you are. The way you described your images made me visualize them. I could see the emotions/feelings.

    Hope you are doing well.

    • lostinamaze says:

      Art therapy makes me nervous as well. But less so since I’m coming to realize it’s not about skill at all. And trust me I have no skill 🙂 But it certainly helps me describe what I have no words for. I’m doing OK these days in between moments.

  4. Just Be Real says:

    Oh my, I thought I responded to your post. Well, better late than never. I never did art therapy. I think I would draw a lot of lines with no forms. Glad you were able to do it and it helped a bit. Safe hugs.

    • lostinamaze says:

      How about an even later reply? 🙂 Alternative ways of expressing myself really helps me out in therapy. I don’t find it easy though.

  5. Lothlorien says:

    Very interesting post. Sounds like a very good session. I had to laught when you said you don’t like when T’s ask,”Where in your body do you feel that?” because my T says that all the time. 🙂 She does a lot of Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, which is a really great modality, but that’s part of it. I enjoyed reading about your art experience. I was surprised by the pine tree for joy, but whenyou mentioned the roots, it seemed great. The tree is rooted, grounded, stable, amd free to grow upward. 🙂 Great image. 🙂

    I have been so incredibly busy with school this year anddoing internships, etc. I have missed you.;)

    Lothlorien

    • lostinamaze says:

      I have missed you as well. I hope things are going well for you in spite of all the busyness of your life. I think of you often. I’m sure my T asks me that question every session. I can’t answer it yet but the question has made me aware of how little I pay attention to my body. I sure hope I can learn to connect. I’m finding creativity in some form extremely helpful in therapy.

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