With a mind that refuses to be quiet and is not very good at slowing – right – down – attempting meditation was always going to be interesting.
It is amazing what you can learn when you’re pinned to a chair trying not to overthink; because, as the facilitator introduced the need to remain mindful – in meditation – and described how to detach a little part of your consciousness to check that you are, indeed, relaxing –
the penny finally dropped.
I was already sectioning parts of my head out, as per the process; but because I wanted to make sure that I was staying totally in control – not because I wanted to watch the calming thoughts flowing in.
This is exactly what I used to do in therapy – and hypnotherapy – and whenever something my illness didn’t want to hear was being said. The detachment process that was going on in my head felt exactly like this – only the function wasn’t mindfulness. It was fear.
A little – but highly important – part of my mind that needed to be engaged, and operating and trying, please, to pay attention; had shored up the defences and totally tuned out.
In meditation, I was wary of the power of relaxing and wanted to tune out the voice that promised to float me away. In therapy, I was suspicious of someone influencing my behaviour or making me admit to things that I didn’t want to say. But the experience felt exactly the same –
Keep a little bit back, as a precaution, because you don’t know what they’re going to say.
Separate a little bit out, just for protection, so you can censor what comes out, and what you’re prepared to allow in.
No wonder I went through therapists at the rate of knots.
There is a book on my shelf that I treat with the same distrust. It is meant to help me feel better – but I am scared of what this might mean. There is a CD that promises to help me sleep which I still have unwrapped, three years on, because it promises to reach my unconscious. A variety of anti-depressants in the cupboard that I agreed to try, in theory, but am then afraid might work –
Which is, of course, the point.
I am not suprised that it took me so long to find a gap that I could challenge the eating disorder in.
But now I’ve got the upper hand.
I might not have let go enough to participate in the meditation and the bars may still shoot up the moment a new idea or challenge is presented; but, I’ve located another little part of my head – and it’s on the alert for unnecessary blocking. It’s got its eye on the bit which has got its eye on the ‘risks’, –
Which sounds pretty complicated – but is actually quite simple.
It means that next time I’m watching out for something that might help me; I’m also going to be watching out for the bit that is trying to lock me in.