************************************Denial covers the pain of the past * A blanket over the world * Lift a corner * Don't be afraid * Your life awaits you*************************************

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Journey to the Safe Place

The room smelled sweet. Soft white noise blocked out the world. Pillows covered the white plush sofa. She pulled a curtain over the door, and another over the window, closing the space off from the outside.

I sat down. We talked for half an hour, her asking, me trying to answer. There were uncomfortable pauses that I felt I should fill.
Mostly, I didn’t.
I knew that if I tried too hard to find something to say, all the words would leave and be replaced with the panicky fog.
I waited to be asked.
I answered as best I could.
It was good enough.

When I dared, I looked at her face.

Calm – no, serene.

There was no rush there, no expectation, no judgment.
It felt right… as it should be… as I’d hoped it would be.

And then she talked about finding a safe place.

I was told I would have to walk down ten flights of steps. This was a little disconcerting. Either I was up ten stories – not something I enjoy – or I was going to descend to an underground cavern. The thought of going deep into the ground made me feel like I couldn’t breathe.

I closed my eyes, lulled by soft music.
She spoke.
I had to choose.

I was in a round tower. I told myself it was safe, strong and secure. No one else was there. In front of me was the arch of an open window. I couldn’t see too much, but I knew I was high above the ground. I wasn’t yet certain what was down below. I found myself wanting to approach the window, but I was afraid to, being up so high. It made my hands and feet tingle as heights always do.

It was time to head down the winding staircase. I ignored the numbness in my hands and feet and walked down the first flight of stairs. I rounded a bend and saw an identical arched window. Outside it was bright and the sky was summer blue.

After descending another flight, I found another arched window. I got a little closer. Below I saw green grass with lavender patches spread out in the sunlight.

It's the purple meadow!

I knew the bench was there, but I couldn’t see it yet.

It must be directly below me, near the tower.

Another flight down and then another. From the sixth floor, I was even with the tops of the tallest trees that surrounded the meadow. I remembered being in the meadow - the one in the real world. I remembered how exhilarating it had been the first time I stepped out from the trees and saw the open space surrounded by trees and covered in grass and lavender. Anticipation turned the memory to reality. I hurried down to the next level.
Half way down. No time to stop at the window.

Safe, protected, warm, inviting.

Fourth floor.
Third floor.
I had to see if the bench was there. On the second floor, I paused, hands on the window ledge. Leaning out a little, I could see the bench. My clipboard and pen were there, waiting.

The bench in the purple meadow
(taken during my private retreat last month)

Only one more flight to go. Down the steps, around the bend...

At the bottom, I found an arched doorway where the windows had been. The door was open. A warm breeze wafted in.


I stepped into the light, heat radiating on my face. I walked to the bench and put both palms on the seat, feeling the warmth of the sun on its surface.

The Purple Meadow
(Taken during my private retreat, last month)

Sitting, I looked around at the blooming meadow. Like a waiting friend, a deer took a step toward me, moving halfway out of the woods beyond the meadow.
I smiled at her welcome.

I reached down to run a hand over the tops of the blooming lavender, feeling the caress of their soft petals on my palm. The breeze moved my hair against my face.

So safe and warm, so incredibly comforting...

When I looked up, the deer had come close. Cautiously, I reached a hand out to stroke the side of her face. The instant I touched her, she stared into my soul.
It was intense.
Strength and knowledge, love and wisdom emanated from the moist and dark-brown depths of those eyes.

Leaving my body behind, safely seated on the bench, I stood up and walked with the deer. She led me across the meadow to a pond I hadn’t seen before. Pushing aside the tall grasses and cattails, I stepped to the edge and looked at my reflection in the glass-like water. I was beautiful; ageless, knowing, light, and unafraid.
In my eyes I saw determination.

I don’t have far to look to find myself.
I am here.
I’ve always been here.
I’ll always be here.

“When I count to five…”

It was so unexpected, so sudden.


I was swept back into my body.


The deer watched me from the edge of the forest.


I rose from the bench and turned towards the tower, but already it was losing substance, wavering, fading before my eyes.


I closed my eyes, locking the vision of the meadow behind my lids. I felt the gaze of the deer on my back and I knew it would always be there.
Watching… guiding…


I opened my eyes.
I was back in the room with the pillows, the sweet scent, the white noise…

Back to the real world.

Or is it?


(Here are two computer drawings I did this afternoon.
I posted these a few hours after putting the rest of the post up.)

Seeing the Pond


Meeting the Rainbow Lady

With a son graduating from high school last weekend and a daughter graduating from eighth grade this past Monday, it's been a very busy, emotional week. Somehow or another I made it through all of the inner turmoil I felt as I thought of my children moving up and moving on. We got through the dinners and award nights, the "I can't find my dress shoes" and "Why do I have to iron my shirt if I'm putting that robe over it anyway" and "Can I have fifteen friends over for a bonfire in two hours?"

Mostly, it was fun... but I'm glad to be in the lull before summer really kicks off. In just over a week, we are heading out of town for a family vacation. We are returning to a place which was our Summer destination at least a dozen times when the kids were little. All four of my children will join us for at least part of the two week trip - and my future son-in-law is also going to be with us for a few days.

But first... I'm going to see the Rainbow Lady.

I mentioned a few posts ago that a friend of mine had told me about an experience she had that sounded a lot like Soul Retrieval. Since this is something I've been looking into for some time, I was naturally intrigued. I referred to her as the rainbow lady because my friend mentioned something (of which I am not entirely clear) about finding a rainbow symbol that defined her in some way, during a session with this therapist. My friend also told me that she has seen a regular therapist for years, but has seen "the Rainbow Lady" a few times, as well.

Today, I'm going to meet the Rainbow Lady for an hour. After that, the plan is to return next week for a two-and-a-half-hour session, if all goes well today.

I'm not sure what is going to be included in today's session or the one next week... from what I understand, there is a massage table in her office, there are pillows that are for throwing, hitting and probably comfort as well. There are candles and a there is a teddy bear. I know this from what she and my friend told me, and because there are pictures of her office at her website.
I also know there will be hypnoses involved.

What am I hoping to gain from this?
I'm not really sure.
I'm not going in with any specific expectations.

The original reason I was looking into soul retrieval is because since I've been integrating these compartmentalized thoughts/alters/other sides of me, I have been able to communicate with and understand these very separate pieces. However, most often they do not feel like me. Instead, when I am aware of other sides of me, it is like multiple threads of thought running through my head at the same time. Sometimes this is quite confusing and can cause anxiety if these sides don't agree.

As a fictitious example, imagine you are standing in a grocery store trying to decide what to eat for dinner. In your head are eight different opinions. It is not a reasonable conversation as one might have with any decision. There is not just, not spaghetti, I had it last night, I know I should eat more fish, but I really feel like beef.
Instead, it’s more like this:

I can’t eat beef every night!
I should eat more fish.
i hate fish
I’m not hungry
Let's get out of here

All at the same time, followed in the next two seconds by

the candy looks good
I’m not eating anything except macaroni and cheese.
I’m not even hungry!
If you get that, I’m not eating it.
Get me out of here!

And so on. Meanwhile, I’m standing still, staring through the glass at the beef and fish on ice while the butcher is waiting for a response.

What I’ve read about Soul Retrieval makes me think it could help further integrate these pieces of me – help bring them all the way home.

Do I expect that the Rainbow Lady is going to be able to do that in two sessions?
I only hope to gain a little more insight into myself, and to try something new.

I’ll let you know how it works out.

Co Creation

Co Creation
We create the life we live

Love your inner child...

...for she holds the key...

...to your personal power.
A lesson is woven into each day.
Together they make up the tapestries of our lives.