Friday, 17 February 2012

Therapy meltdown

It was an incredibly difficult therapy appointment today - by far the hardest and the worst. And I'm aware that I've been 'medicating' ever since, mostly with food.

I've eaten probably twice as many calories as I normally would, as well as taking morphine for pain levels that I would usually manage mentally. But I feel so fragile after the appointment that I have no strength whatsoever to stand up to the pain on my own.

The appointment was going fine till about halfway through, when I mentioned that the neck pressure symptoms seem to have changed. Rather than the usual screwdriver-in-the-eye sensation, for the past few days, I've been getting a tight band of pain across my forehead.

The therapist asked what I thought that might represent; I couldn't answer, and she asked if perhaps it might be someone's hand on my head. I suddenly went all hot and shakey and started to cry. I said that it hadn't occurred to me, but based on how I felt at hearing her say that, I guess the answer is yes.

Then I totally went to pieces. I was having terrible flashbacks right there, of my father physically restraining me by holding my head down against the pillow. I don't think I can adequately describe the horror of it. It was visceral, I couldn't speak, I was in floods of tears and all I wanted was to get up and run away. In that moment I hated the therapist for taking me to that point.

Most of the rest of the appointment was me just sitting there shaking and crying. She said that when you're being abused, often the brain redirects attention to a different part of the body, so you're not aware of what's really happening.

I guess that must be it; I've never had any memories of being held like that before (it was always being pushed down by the chest), but the severity of my own reaction leaves me in no doubt of the veracity of it. And it's not like she suggested the images or feelings that swept over me.

And although I've spent all afternoon medicating the feelings, at least I'm not actually having to feel them.

When the appointment finally came to an end, it just slipped out: 'Thank God, I've been wanting to run away for the past half an hour'. I felt really rude afterwards - she's trying to help me after all - but I can't tell you the effort it took to stay in that goddam room. She said I did really well to stay there (and I did apologise).

I'm terrified now about what's going to come up next; every time you think you've remembered everything, something else comes up.

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