Wednesday, and we have to deal with the way last session ended. We did talk about it, and I had done lots of writing about it. What it boils down to is that Bea keeps stepping on Mom landmines, and they trigger this feeling that Bea needs me to be okay so I don’t bother her, or so she doesn’t have to deal with my feelings. What I finally realized was there is a difference between needing someone to be okay and wanting them to be okay. Bea also believes it is not solely mom stuff that is triggered during those times, some of it is truly just about Bea. She believes it is the little girl needing to test Bea, to make sure Bea is safe and capable of handling all the ugliness in her head; little Alice needs to make sure Bea is who she says she is.
I had written that when she ends things on such a positive note, pulling from something that happened earlier in the session, it just feels so contrived. Bea laughs at that, and says, “Well, it is. Not contrived to be fake or to manipulate, but yes, for all intents and purposes, it is contrived. And that doesn’t feel safe to the teen or to the little girl. I know that now, and I will do my best not to do it again.” And so there it is. Bea was being exactly who she says she is; transparent, authentic, real, and honest.
As we talk this through, and I hide under my blanket, Bea starts to notice something, and because I’ve said SP is okay, she goes in that direction.
“Is there a part of you that feels frozen right now?” Bea sounds curious, and her tone is light, but there’s an undercurrent to her voice that says she is going somewhere with this.
“I don’t think so.” I’m hesitant to answer, because I don’t know where this is going.
“I’ve been watching your left hand. I noticed as we were talking you had grabbed onto the blanket and that while it looks like the rest of you can move, that hand hasn’t moved once.”
I think for a minute. “I– I guess that’s true.” I would never have noticed it if she hadn’t pointed it out. Frozen still feels like a natural state to me.
“Can we focus on that hand?” She asks.
“Okay.” It’s whispered because I’m unsure if there is anything to gain from my hand. But I’ll try.
I have no idea what is coming up. It’s…emptiness, maybe. I can’t really figure it out. It’s just, I don’t know what it is. “I don’t know,” I finally say.
“What’s the hand doing?” Bea asks.
“Ummm….holding? Holding the corner of the blanket.” This is seriously so strange. We are talking about my left hand like it has its own ideas, thoughts, wants. My therapist is seriously weird sometimes.
“Is the hand holding on tight, or relaxed? Does it want to grip tighter or relax more? Maybe let go, or hold on?” See? She is so weird.
“Ummm. Tight, I think. Yeah, holding on tight.” And there’s this feeling of lonely that is here now. I’m so lonely. So incredibly lonely.
Bea wants me to think about her other questions but I go a different direction. I know sensorimotor therapy says to let the feelings come and then go, to stay focused on the body, but I need to say my feelings, talk about them. Or at least try to. “A feeling……lonely. Alone.”
“So feelings of being alone are coming up now, as we focus on the hand holding the blanket.”
I nod, forgetting she can’t really see me. “It’s….I’m….I don’t know! I’m just alone! There’s no one!”
“That may have been true in the past, but it’s not true now. I am here. Hubby is here. You have friends who are here. You aren’t alone now. It felt so bad to be so alone then, but you aren’t alone now. I am here.” Bea sounds a little stern. I don’t think she wants me going too far down the rabbit hole of aloneness.
“No. I’m just alone. Just me. No one else. No one. Not even….just no one.” Little Alice is insistent that no one is here.
“I know you were alone. And it might feel like that right now, but you aren’t alone now. I’m right here. You don’t have to do this alone, not anymore. That’s probably pretty hard to believe, isn’t it? But I’m here.” She isn’t stern anymore. She’s gentle now, and reassuring.
“Yes. I’m here, 100% in this with you.”
I honestly don’t know what happened after that. I think I was pretty far away. I don’t think I talked very much. I was stuck in feelings and images and just this huge lonely feeling. It’s vast, and all encompassing and seems to go on forever and ever, this lonely feeling.
It seems linked to my hand holding the blanket so tightly. Now that I’ve had time to process things a little more than I was capable of in session, I can clearly see myself feeling so alone with Kenny when he was playing games and just wanting someone’s hand to hold. But there was no one. Not even Kenny, because he was scary. But I really needed something to hold onto, and because no ones hand was there, I held onto blankets, pillows, teddy bears, dolls, sheets. Anything that could be held, I held onto.
I still do that now. It wasn’t something I was ever aware of, but I hold onto blankets and pillows and even the edges of my sweater sleeves. Now I have my little dog I can hold onto, and hubby’s hand, but this realization just feels impossible to wrap my head around. There’s so much sadness and grief in me right now, for all the loneliness I have carried with me for so long. It’s still there, and it’s so huge. I had no idea until last Wednesday how boundless it was. And I have no idea what to do with it all.
2 thoughts on “Frozen hand holding on”
I absolutely, without a doubt, hate the alone feeling. My therapist says it’s because I don’t trust but once I feel safe again, I won’t feel so alone anymore. I don’t know how many times I will e-mail or text ‘Dr. K?’ He’ll answer with a simple, ‘I’m here’. Sometimes it’s enough and sometimes it isn’t. It’s just such an anxiety inducing, internal scratching, painful thing when you feel it. Hugs!!
Alice, sometimes I think we are the same person. I love you ❤️