When my EMDR therapist and I had the conversation that I was close to being done with therapy, we revisited the question, she asked me in our very first session.
“How do you know when you are done?”
“I more fully accept myself,” is what I had said.
But then I asked her, “How is it supposed to feel in your body?”
“Like you are flying.”
That’s all she had to say, and I smiled. I wanted to feel like that. I know I wouldn’t feel that way all the time, but I did want a glimpse of it.
May has usually been the month I start to get a little nervous. I love the warmer weather and being outside, however historically it’s the time my allergies set in and the mold from the humid weather starts to make itself known in Indiana.
It’s the month where I want to be inside and rest because I’m so exhausted, yet my body wants to be outside. I want to revel in the abundance of nature with everyone else without having to worry how my body feels so much of the time.
Spiritually, my body has experienced so much dissonance during summer, especially over the last few years. It has been so difficult to embrace being and abundance when my body has been highly reactive, exhausted, and fatigued.
I do realize that it’s perfectly fine to be experiencing something different than the symbolism of a specific season, and yet because of my environmental illness, I felt like I was teaching my body to avoid the goodness that is nature–and I didn’t like this habit that was forming.
It didn’t seem like I had any other choice though, so I felt powerless. I felt highly reactive, frustrated, and sad. Going through the same cycle again and again. Health deteriorating. Needing to move. Needing to switch jobs.
Last summer, I had reached my limit. I didn’t want to keep doing this. I learned what I could from my exhausted state, living at my parents’ and at a friends’ for weeks at a time, packing my apartment, and trying to figure out how to detox, even though I was reacting to mold. I had so much help in starting my tutoring business and moving to the northern suburbs of Indy.
Yet, I felt like I was holding years and years of exhaustion in my body. My grief and powerlessness felt overwhelming & my flashbacks came back with abandon.
In my last session with my therapist, we went over my intake form and how I had told her about my sleep patterns: that I often woke up in the middle of the night, unable to sleep through the night due to mold exposure during the day.
This doesn’t happen anymore. “What connection do you see?” she asked me. I told her how EMDR has helped resolve my grief; it has been part of my work around moving stuck energy in the body. This has helped to calm down my immune system and I’m reacting less to mold in an environment. I’m sleeping through the night. I continue to detox in a variety of ways, including running an air purifier at night.
This summer, I’m excited. I don’t expect my health to be perfect; I think that’s unrealistic. But I do expect myself to delight in being outside, simply thankful that my body can handle so much more than it has in a long time.
I’m thankful that my brain doesn’t have to equate summer, mold, extreme brain fog, and being unable to be a part of a 10 minute conversation. I’m glad that I’ve been able to untangle my negative emotions and beliefs–so that I can simply be, and accept what is. Today I choose to be hopeful about what summer will bring.