Hello @sherry and really good to ~speak again! I am short on time this weekend with visitors and all the rest - trying to practice my non avoidance and openness LOL. I will comment further - but a quick one for now - I totally totally agree re the online/ text communication. I do use a lot of this and you know what - it's a distancing strategy and in some ways it reduces the stress of actually speaking - but for me it's often a cowardly way out and it does not help to cultivate intimacy.
The ex who I have talked about on other threads who I found I was ignoring and blanking almost, has reminded me (in his behaviour) how cleansing it is to really be totally face to face honest about issues - I arranged to meet him and was honest about the fact that his flakiness made me feel hurt, that I needed support sometimes and that I am human. I don't expect him to do anything with this as such - the communication was for me and was freeing.
I find the online forum sharing helpful - and in the early days to be honest it was the only place in life where I could ever admit that things were less than perfect - that I actually needed people in my life and was not totally cool and self sufficient.
From that point my communication has improved to embrace loving and close real life friendships which are open and healthy - and to eschew the old friendships and relationships that were keeping me stuck.
So glad all is going well for you - I am looking forward to hearing more and will post more when time allows.
I'm back! I don't know much about somatic therapy so correct me if I am going down the wrong track - much of my recovery has been the recognition that the body is crucial - that when avoiding feelings or finding them overwhelming, often the body numbs out and that one way of effectively dealing with emotion, painful thoughts etc is to stop wrapping the mind around these thoughts and perpetuating them, but instead experience them in the body, examine the sensation - or lack of sensation. This has proved an effective way for me to sit with things that I once would have avoided or pushed away and over time I have become much more sensitive and I suppose more loving, towards my body as a result and better able to experience feelings.
I am interested in what you wrote @sherry about virtual communication - speaking on the phone and face to face interactions are so important - and for me, not that easy, it's a question of realising the discomfort and doing it anyway - now that I recognise that cultivating intimacy is really important to me and is a real value in my life, I have sometimes to overide natural reticence and learned evasion in order to make this happen. It's empowering stuff.
I am doing really really well. I feel happy about the new dimension coming into my life with a deeper level of connection.
I'm seeing my therapist weekly for now because I feel like the growth and revelations in my personal life is exponential. The body awareness has always been a part of this process but not quite like this! He is giving me assistance in recognizing the sensations as they arise and change- he is trained in observing and noting small shifts in me. One thing that is really helpful is he observes and comments on and inquires about my body language- say, a hand gesture or a shift in posture, as I am speaking. So he ties my body language in with what I am expressing and we get beyond the words and concepts into the felt sense, the instinctive, compelling motivation behind the words.
It's interesting to me how sometimes I cannot feel anything in my body, and when he asks me to pause and feel the sensations during my verbal expression, I cannot! I can describe and use words to illustrate it, but not really feel a sensation in my body even when asked to stop and be aware. This has happened during the expression of powerfully positive things for me, things which even move me to tears- I cannot sense it in my body, not that I can recognize! I was surprised by that. So, he encourages the verbal description of an emotion at those times when I can't tell him what it is my body wants to do with it. I really appreciate her, I appreciate this whole process.
I'm very intrigued at how a decision to stop the electronic communication for the most part in my personal relationships has brought a new level of awareness also. I'm willing to bet that anyone relying on electronic communication to conduct a relationship beyond simple logistic communications "What was it you needed at the store?" is relying on imagination and assumptions driven by their own narrative.
That's what I'm seeing. When you don't have the actual person representing their actual selves, your own narrative will fill in. In fact I see it a LOT here on the boards. "I messaged him, he didn't reply..." "I sent a brief, positive note and he said thank you...". these actual meaningless low effort exchanges, absent any true personal connection, provide no real substance for an intimate connection and yet, they are seen as major indicators of something. I can see that has operated in my life up til now but it's really seeming absurd!! A simple choice to insist on real connection in my life has revealed a lot!!
In some cases, I am certain, the more you actually speak, the more you actually, know, the more you know you need to change your story because the real thing isn't anywhere near it. It could be a double edged sword I am sure!!
I am generally quite busy these days with my business- a busy season. So I'll be here less but continuing my IRL progress steadily. Will check back soon!
Sounds like you're doing great too! I read your other lost and concur- wrote something along those lines on another thread.