I am lying in bed this morning, which is just heavenly after a weekend of hard work! I am struggling to resist acting out. Had to call in God a number of times already to help remove the obsession. Ahhh… The joys of being an addict! My addict really never sleeps.
There is a benefit to my behaviour though. I spent years using all kinds of things to mask my emotions, so even if I do feel something, I am so disconnected from my body, I actually have no idea what it is, or really even how to acknowledge it. My defence mechanisms kick in long before I have chance to even connect with the feeling, so that I’ll be walking along minding my own business, when, suddenly, I fall off the face of the planet and into fantasy. It’s pretty full on! Before I started recovery, I didn’t even recognise I did it. Then when I did start recognising it, I would get really angry with myself for doing it, because “I should know better”, no worse, “I should be able to control it” – haha!
I am an addict, I have a disease, I am sick. What I can’t control is my first thought and I most certainly can’t do anything constructive if I get angry with it. What I can do is arrest it as soon as possible and pause for a minute and look at what I am trying to tell myself. I had a massive therapy session on Friday and we touched on some of the most shameful points. It is the first time in recovery that I have experienced a feeling of such a great magnitude. I then ran flat out with work last weekend and now I am experiencing, what I can best describe as an emotional echo. It normally takes 4 days, so experiencing this on day 3 is huge progress! 🙂
When I was young, I am learning, I developed a number of different ego states to remove me from the painful reality I found myself in. These ego states come into play well and truly in my adult life, when I am triggered back to the unresolved pain from when I was, let’s say, 5years old. I look at them as a blessing now, because they are the indicator lights going on, telling me that I am having a feeling.
So my method is simple. I live my life, as present as I can be. When I find myself drifting off into fantasy, or sexualising someone (which would normally send me into a shame spiral, which ends in me getting angry with myself – and the anger is a lot easier to feel than pain) – I stop. I take a breath (a few actually and maybe even do a little meditation around it), I do everything I can to get back into my body and then I say thank you! I don’t know what I am feeling, but I accept that it must be quite a big feeling for me to feel the need to subconsciously put defence mechanisms in place. I ask myself what I need and if I don’t know what that is I just look after myself in the best way that I know how to, because something big is going on and I need to hold my hand through it and love myself, so that maybe, just maybe… I might be able to feel safe enough to express that feeling.
I am a child in a big grown up world. Anger and judgement will only scare me more. I need love and encouragement if I am going to express this stuff.