I’m not a big talk therapy fan. I find it self- indulgent, too left brained and too dependent on blame and angst. But that was then, this is now and there are all kinds of “Talk Therapy” that have nothing to do with any of the above, and slip quite nicely into the cracks that need filling, without attachment, or “transference” or 50 minute “sessions” that end with “Your time is up. I’ll see you again next week.”
Out here in sunny Sequim on the Olympic Peninsula, although the weather is exceptional and the place beautiful, it’s not easy to find a doctor of any kind, mind, body, or otherwise. They are either off on vacation, or all full up with a waiting list that goes for the next two years, at least. Yet after falling from my deck last week I needed to “see someone” so I went to the walk-in clinic in town where the nurse-practitioer told me to rest, take some ibuprofen and wait to get better. Eventually!
For me this wasn’t enough. I needed more, and the “More” that I needed was to not be alone in this beautiful place where initially I had intended to write and relax. But that was (BF) “before the fall,” after which, my world got much smaller and tighter and my “aloneness” was suddenly accompanied by pain, and thus quickly morphed into loneliness, and was no longer such a convenient or pleasant fit.
So after seven years of paying for Long Term Health Care Insurance, I decided to call in my chips, expecting no more than some practical assistance with the care and feeding of my damaged self, which could barely lift a plate, get up out of chair, or in or out of a car, without many groans and grimaces, and yes, even tears. To my surprise and delight, what I got went way beyond the practical stuff, the stuff the health aides check off on the company time sheet, and involved a variety of care givers with golden skills of communication and compassion, that included generous life experience and wonderful stories to share, which took my mind far from my pain to a place of healing and hope where I felt connected, supported, and unconditionally loved.
Now that’s real “Talk Therapy, a synthesis of heart, head, and personal wisdom, all the better for it being a gift (freely given), not part of the package. Unexpectedly filled with light.
If you asked me what it was that made these conversations notable, I’d say you had to be here to get it ─ that this humane and harmonious vibration cannot be described, at least not by me. In brief, it’s the kind of exchange that heals, supports and has the magical power to dis-create physical pain as well as the mental anguish, that goes along with it. And to even begin to comprehend it you need to experience it.
At the end of the day, as at the beginning, most of us want to feel connected, whether to another person, to our work and our gifts, to family, friends, and to spirit, which, of course, is the uber connector, the vibration that makes life eminently more liveable
To experience pain and discomfort without disparaging it, or ourselves, as useless, stupid, or unworthy is a genuine challenge. Until this moment I’ve made no effort to bring meaning to this “accidental” event, or to spin a story that justifies it, except to be here while I have this conversation with myself, with you, and with God, while allowing the feelings and thoughts that come my way to remain un-judged. And perhaps to even discover something uplifting and wise amongst the ashes of my discontent..
Today my healthcare aide was from Rio. There was no language barrier, just considerate conversation and gentle service. The massage therapist was a Mormon. The first one I have ever (knowingly) met. And though I am only vaguely familiar with her religion, and have never really “gotten” it. I could feel the power of her faith, and her personal connection to spirit, which was as healing to me as her gentle touch.
Call this whatever you like. Do we need to “talk” about it? Probably not. The talk may be the messenger, but it’s certainly not the message. I am still trying to find out what that message is, and to honor it no matter what.
Here’s an image that may help you connect in a new and valuable way
Silence Is Golden
Intention: To become still and calm, inside and out To cultivate true connection with self and spirit.
Close your eyes and exhale one time. See and feel how words and stories are covering you up and weighing you down. See and sense how by separating from this mental chatter your troubles disappear. Feel how it is to live your life in the silence that goes beyond all words. Be in the middle of this silence and know that it is golden. Breathe this golden silence into every cell of your body. Then breathe out and open your eyes.