Last week and over the weekend I was really stressing out about the disclosure for my group therapy. It was like I couldn’t think of anything else. But a friend of mine told me to stop thinking about Thursday and when it gets here just go for it. And for some reason even though I could tell myself that, it just stuck more when the friend said it.
So I have been very busy this week and not really focused on the disclosure, which felt really great. I went to all my favorite workout classes, got caught up at work, and continued to work with my dogs who were recently fighting a lot. And when today came, the actual day I will be doing the disclosure, it didn’t feel so big.
I mean, I’m sure as tonight gets closer I will have more nerves than I do right now, but mostly I feel like whatever happens will be good. Freeing. Positive. Necessary for healing to really move forward.
Two brave souls went first in the group. It was tremendously cool of them to take that on and go first. It was exhausting to be a listener of someone’s trauma. But I’m truly thankful for them being so brave because it gave me the chance to see how the process happens. And you know what? It is really great.
I’m even kind of looking forward to it. After the disclosure the group is allowed to give feedback and what could be more awesome than supportive feedback from people who have felt most, if not all, of the same feelings I have felt and continue to feel? It is a bit crazy to think that I have been stuck with this burden for all these years and a good chunk of it could feel a lot less heavy after I make it through this day.
“Just go with it.” That’s a phrase used often in EMDR. When a feeling comes up or I notice something during the process, my therapy always says “just go with it.” And then we proceed. When EMDR starts there is a negative cognition. I’ve listed some before, but things like “I’m not good enough” or “I don’t deserve love” would be negative cognitions.
One successful session of EMDR for me was “I am a disappointment.” When it begins, the therapist asks how true that statement feels. For me it was very much a real feeling at that time with some specific circumstances from my past. So, in EMDR, there is a stimulus used such as buzzers in each hand, eye movements following a hand or light, tapping, or tones with headphones. At the time, I used the buzzers in each hand. So I would close my eyes and just “notice” what feelings would come up thinking about that specific situation that made me feel I was a disappointment. After a certain amount of time, the therapist would have me open my eyes and say what I thought about, pinpointing something by saying “just go with it,” and then I would close my eyes again and the buzzers would start. Now, I am no expert in EMDR. So research it if you want all the specific information, but this is my experience. It never seemed like I was doing it right. I always felt like I would think the wrong things or not focus on the things that were necessary. But that’s silly. The idea is that I close my eyes, the buzzers start, and I just think about what comes to mind without judging myself for it! In any case, I couldn’t believe that I could feel that good about a situation in only one session. I felt released from the burden of that disappointment and truly felt that I was ok just the way I was and so I’m fine the way I am now.
I think “just go with it” and/or “just go for it” are my new buzz phrases. I can’t wait to get the disclosure over with tonight because I feel like “going for it” is really going to get me through some of the necessary steps to move forward. Not without my experience or my trauma, but better because of how I got through it and how I can now begin to recognize that it is a piece of me and NOT who I am.