One of the effects of the therapeutic dance that I teach is that we are constantly reaching new levels of strength and freedom -- in both the body and the mind.
A side effect of the new levels of strength and freedom of the mind -- or part of the process of getting there, really -- is that we discover deeper, older layers of ick. These deeper, older layers are truly encrusted and take a pick axe of determination to break through.
Luckily the dance work itself is like a pick axe, but sometimes we reach layers that take even more concentrated, focused effort. Sometimes we need a wider variety of tools.
I am there.
I am struggling.
And it has taken some time for me to see this because I am also quite stubborn. I just keep insisting that I am fine until I run out of insistence.
Now, don't get me wrong, this depression is nothing -- NOTHING -- like the depression of years ago, pre-dance. That depression was the "I hope I don't wake up tomorrow" sort and I NEVER feel that any more and for that I am immensely grateful.
I love my life. I love life. I could not say that ten years ago.
But even that does not make this depression any less real, just less life threatening in the physical sense.
The New Layer of Ick that I have discovered is this:
On some fundamental level, I do not believe I am worthy of my own time. I do not believe I am worth my own effort. For something to be done and done well, I must see that it is connected to the work I do for OTHERS.
Which creates this awful cycle of needing to take care of myself but not doing it because that is not for other people (or so I think) and then thinking I "should" be working on my work for others but not having the energy to do so because I don't take care of myself and then judging myself at every stop of this contorted thinking.
Did you keep up with that mess?
And this is hard to write about. So many thoughts spinning...
Here is where all that working with the wounded child stuff can actually help.
Or working with whatever part of you was wounded.
Whatever age you were when some key pain happened, imagine HER and then take care of her/you like she was not taken care of.
That is what I am going to be working with for a while now.
I am printing a photo of her/me and placing it on my altar to remind me every day to take care of me like I would have taken care of her.
Part of this picture then is accountability, so I am writing here about this painful thing to say "I am doing this."
Otherwise I "forget.
I will be writing about this journey to change that story in my mind that I am not worth my own time.
Brains are plastic; they CAN be rewired with great effort.
(It also so happens that they are PRIMED for this rewiring through vigorous physical movement like dance. The hour after? That is THE KEY TIME for rewiring to happen, so after vigorous physical work, the effects of things like study, chant, mindfulness work are more likely to STICK.)
The other part of the picture is consistency, which I am hopeful that the accountability will help with.
I chant, dance, sit with my happy light, take vitamins, drink water, eat well, journal, read spiritual texts.
I do NOT do it enough for it to really matter. I do not do it consistently.
That's the thing: people think they can dip their toes into this work when you have to dive head first. You have to fully commit. You have to go ALL OUT.
Just a little bit will get you just about nowhere.
To rewire brain is pretty much a full time job on top of all your other full time jobs.
But this is the work of life and death.
I love my life. I want to FEEL that.
I want, as Marcy would call it, Sustainable Happy.
I believe I can have that.
I know I can.
I will share that journey here. All the things I read, try, do...I will write about here. And I would love to hear from you.