Growing capacity to “be with” …
I used to have the idea that things we struggle with in life, like painful events/accidents, difficult separations and other traumas are things we eventually will “get over” and “move on” from. As if they would disappear..
I’ve during my training to become a trauma therapist come to a different understanding. The symptoms of trauma in me might never totally go away, but my capacity to BE with those symptoms can grow with more awareness and understanding of their origin.
An example; I notice in me that I every now and then, becomes overwhelmed and find it difficult to be present when someone sits down with me and patiently looks me in the eyes, showing no impulse of doing anything but to sit there with me, with total presence, curiosity and with caring eyes.
I’ve learnt that this has to do with “early attachment trauma”, or as it’s called in Family Constellations, an “interrupted movement” in the connection with the mother.
As I’ve written about before I was taken away from my mother for a surgery when I was only a few month old. Back then parents were not allowed to stay with their children so my mum had to “hand me over” to a nurse…and pick me up a few days (many days) later.
This early “break” in the bond has effected me in relationships all my life, not trusting that anyone will be there for me, or that I’m not worth being with. As an adult knowing the circumstances around this event has given me an understanding and and it is comforting for the mind, but the memory stuck in the little babys nervous system that “without mum I’ll die”, needs another approach to heal.
With the right support it’s possible to little by little build capacity to stay present with a strong emotion, like the one I described above. I got to experience this when in a practice group during our training, my friend and fellow student, supported me in exploring what showed up in the body when this feeling of overwhelm happened.
My capacity and trust keep growing, thanks to this beautiful work and to all the people in my life who supports me in different ways ❤️
A lot more could be said about this model of working with trauma, I just gave one example that has had a big impact on me and my life.
The training I’m referring to is Somatic Experiencing®, where I’ve now reached the Advanced Level and the final stretch before becoming a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner (SEP). For you who are not familiar with what this approach is about, here’s more info; https://traumahealing.org/about-us/#about