Things I learned on A’s Vacation

Before you read this post, you should read the story of our first rupture for context. This is a list of things I learned when A was gone. We haven’t had chance to go over any of these – and it is a lot of random snippets – but it is my hope that after my wedding, and when things settle down, I’ll be able to go over some of this with her.

For now, it’s actually really helped to tell my story of that first rupture – its brought me emotionally closer to trusting A.

Things I’ve Learned

  • connection doesn’t end because of separation
  • needing someone else is scary. I need A, and that’s terrifying
  • but depending on someone for healing is necessary
  • expressing my feelings doesn’t always go well (or didn’t)
  • I hate that I wish she was my Mom
  • I feel safest when I am alone
  • By not opening up to A, I’ll prevent her from leaving me
  • The closer I get to painful feelings the more I want to run. But the more I want to run, the more I feel like I need to be ‘good’ and open up to A
  • I don’t ask for things or try things unless I’m positive they will go my way. By not asking for what I need, I protect myself from ‘no’. By not trying, I protect myself from not being ‘good enough’
  • This may take years
  • ^ that sucks
  • Will A stay for years?
  • I feel very strongly I should have saved him/them. I should have fixed it.
  • It’s terrifying to not be given a therapeutic direction or timeline
  • But its good, because all I would think about is sticking to it and being perfect
  • A goes where I lead her – and doesn’t lead me
  • No matter what I bring A – sadness, grief, anger, fear, any and all volatile emotions – she is calm and meets me with unwavering acceptance. I don’t believe it, but its laid out in front of me every single week.
  • Resolving childhood trauma feels like its going to kill you because when you experienced it, you literally did not have the physical resources to deal – so when you packed it away, the fear was packed away with it – and thats why it feels like death
  • I don’t want to accept the nevers.

I’m never going to get the time back that I lost. I am never going to be able to undo the lies. I am never going to be able to completely fix this. I can never go back. I’m never going to have these needs met how I needed. I am never going to get what I need from my family of origin. They are not capable of it.

I understand, cognitively, most of the nevers. Just like I cognitively ‘trust’ A. But understanding or knowledge, or rational cognition, is different from acceptance and the emotional battle we take every single time we are in therapy.

Nobody ever told me my emotions were valid, before A did. And the things I need to do to heal – to move closer to A, to become vulnerable, to allow myself and my feelings, all of me, to be ‘seen’ – are the very things that I expect to hurt.

Maybe, maybe, my worth to A, isn’t dependent on being perfect. Maybe she loves me for me.

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10 thoughts on “Things I learned on A’s Vacation

  1. I relate to so much of this. I think there’s an underlying grieving process that runs parallel to the good stuff we get in therapy, because we become more aware of what we didn’t get earlier in life when we were especially vulnerable.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I like this post too. I can relate to most of your list. One thing, though, that the client in me agrees with, but the counselor in me doesn’t agree with, is your point about if you don’t open up, she won’t leave. I get it, it’s like if you share the scary stuff she will leave, so it’s better not to share. At the same time, though, if you do open up, she will meet you there (my counselor does). It’s scary and I go back and forth with it too. You’re definitely not alone there. Same with the running from emotions. I told my counselor that, in this context of running from emotions, I’m like a marathon-er or something, constantly running. I get that, too. But maybe, just maybe, doing that takes a lot of energy, even if we don’t realize it.

    Liked by 1 person

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