The third session

I move to the other chair in front of the tripod. After she adjust the tripod and switches on the light she hands me two pads. She sits to my left, file open, pen poised.

The two lights in the middle of the light bar on. I stare at them, eyes looking back.

– We’ll just check the pads.

As the lights move to the right the pad in my right hand vibrates. I clench the pads tighter. After the light passes the central point and moves left the pad in my left hand buzzes. My grip tightens.

– Same signal if you want to stop.

I raise my right hand.

– Now, we’ll begin with the same event. And we’ll begin at the place where it is worst. Tell me what you notice.

I.

I remember.

I tell her.

What was around.  Objects. Light. What I saw. I close my eyes as I talk. The image is more vivid than last week, later.

– And just notice that.

I do. I saw. I see.

– And what emotions do you feel?

I remember.

I tell her.

The anxiety. The distress. The fear. The

– And just notice them.

I do. I feel those emotions. I feel.

– And where do you feel this?

There is a tightness in my shoulders. At the back. In the front. I jerk my head to the left, push my head to my chest. I feel a tightness in my thighs, in my chest. My breathing shallows.

I

I tell her.

– Just notice that.

I do.

– And remember that.

She turns on the light bar.

The lights move

The pads vibrate

Right

I am there

Left

I see

Right

I feel

Left

I am there

Right

Images flash

Left

A cine film in my head

Right

There

Left

I am there

Right

My shoulders tighten

Left

The lights stop.

– Breathe in.

Inhale through the nose

– Breathe out.

Exhale through the mouth

– What do you notice?

I see something. Vivid. I tell her.

– Just notice that.

I do.

I do.

The lights start.

Right.

                There

Left

                I

Right

                I am

Left

                There

Right

                I am there

Left

                I feel

Right

                I

Left

                I

Right

                I am there

Left

The lights centre.

– Breathe in

Nose

– Breathe out

Mouth

– What do you notice?

I describe where I was, where I am.

– Just notice that.

The lights start.

Right

                There is a smell

Left

                A strong smell

Right

                I twitch.

Left

                My leg jerks

Right

                I

Left

                I am there.

Right

                I clench the pads harder

Left

                I feel my nails in my palm

Right

                I start to cry

Left

                My eyes narrow

Right

                The lights, the smell, the feel, the weight on my shoulders. I twitch. Slide

Left

                Down in the chair. The weight. I am

Right

                There

Left

                I am there.

Right

                I cry. My breathing shallows. My

Left

                Chest tight.

Right

                I close my eyes. I feel the pads

Left

                There. I am

Right

                The pads vibrate

Left

                Eyes forced open. The lights

Right

                Unfocused, jewels. Through the tears the lights are like jewels

Left

                I am

The lights centre

– Breathe in.

Nose

– Breathe out.

Mouth

– what do you notice?

The physical sensations. I tell her.

– Just notice that.

I do.

The lights, the vibrations, start

Cycle after cycle.

The lights, the vibrations, stop

I am aware of the room, sometimes.

I feel the chair beneath me, sometimes.

But as I watch the lights, feel the pads, I am transported.

I notice the physical, the pains in the shoulders, the thighs, the calves.

The lights, the vibrations, start.

The lights, the vibrations, stop.

I notice the surroundings,

the colours,

the objects,

the smell.

The lights, the vibrations, start.

The lights, the vibrations, stop.

I notice the upset.

Start.

Stop.

I notice the fear.

Start.

Stop.

I notice the anxiety.

Start.

I notice.

The lights centre.

I notice.

The lights stop.

She talks me through the relaxation.

As she did last week. As she did the week before.

Concentrating on breathing.

As I did last week.

Thinking of a comfortable place.

As I did last week.

Thinking of that environment.

As I did last week.

Thinking of reading.

As I did last week.

Concentrating on breathing.

– And feel your feet on the floor.

And I become aware of my shoes. My feet were on tiptoes. I lower my heel.

– And feel yourself on the chair.

I become aware of the support on my back.

– open your eyes.

I do. I hadn’t been aware that they were closed. I blink.

– And notice one or two things that are familiar in the room.

I see the desk. The door. I blink. I clasp my hands, place them between my thighs, bow my head.

We sit, quiet, for a few moments.

– Shall we?

We move back to the other desk.

– You did a lot of processing there.

– It’s hard.

She nods.

– Lots of eye movements.

I clutch my right wrist with my left hand.

– You’re very engaged. From a therapist’s point of view you are really engaged with this.

I nod.

– It’s hard though. It’s hard. It’s much more

She waits.

– physical. It’s much more physical than I. I’m there. It’s like, like a flashback, but not

I click my fingers.

– It’s prolonged. A flashback where you’re.

She makes a note.

– It’s hard,

I say.

– It’s hard.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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About loveandgarbage

I watch the telly and read when not doing law stuff and plugging my decade and a half old unwatched Edinburgh fringe show.
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2 Responses to The third session

  1. Chris says:

    Your courage is astounding. You may not think that you are brave, brave people rarely do.

    Your strength is also astonishing. Again, you may not think so. Many people get told that they are weak because they can not get over something. Maybe, in your darkest times you have felt the same? Your strength though is real and heroic. You have carried this burden for 30 years.

    Facing our fears takes strength and courage. That you are able to do it and write about it is incredible.

    Reading your post made my chest tighten, my heart rate increased. Once again, wonderful writing.

    Much love on your journey.

    Chris

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