After a pretty positive, almost anxiety-free week I was actually quite looking forward to this week’s therapy session. I felt like something had changed in me over the last week: I could see the joys in life again. At times, I could even feel them. I felt motivated and empowered for the most part.
I said it before, and I’ll say it again. Recovery is not a straight line.
When my therapist told me that EMDR involves bringing up and, to some extent, reliving trauma, she wasn’t lying. Of course, she wouldn’t be, but up until this point I’d found it to be such a positive experience that it didn’t really cross my mind. Well, tonight I relived trauma.
Tonight I experienced sheer panic, fear and anxiety in a way I hadn’t for months. You could see the sweat dripping off the palms of my hands, my vision blurred, I couldn’t breathe, I felt completely out of control. This is something I hadn’t experienced on such a scale for a while and I found it incredibly difficult. I felt that familiar darkness – tunnel vision – that gives me no way out. Despite being familiar, that doesn’t make it easier. Plus, having not experienced this for quite a few months, I kind of felt like it hit me harder than it had before.
Every few minutes I was wiping the sweat off my palms into shrivelled tissues, telling my therapist what I was experiencing which was primarily fear. At some points my mood dropped scarily low, causing further anxiety. For the first time in months I thought ‘can I really do this? Is there a way out?’
If I’m honest, it felt like there was no way out. It felt like I’d be controlled by these thoughts and feelings forever and that this was my being. This trauma, fear, panic, was my being.
Well it’s not. I’m doing better now, I recognise that these feelings are being raised again to move them on. My thoughts are being reprocessed. They will be moved on. They’re already moving on.