Estrangement and Recovery

Trauma breaks things.  It fills the pieces with the impulse to flee.  It also augers each piece and necklaces them together into what becomes a tight torsioned knot.

Nothing can get what it needs with all that restlessness pulling against all those constraints.  In that tension, the “I” is too spread out.  There are little torn pieces of “I” inside each restless part.  The self becomes estranged from itself.  The parts of the body become estranged from each other.  Nothing feels real, except for a series of impossible contradictions that when given voice says things like: “I don’t want to be abandoned, but I want to be left alone.”

Recovery is about reconnection and to be effective it needs to reach all of the parts at once.   As recovery unknots trauma and stills that impulse to flee, we find something miraculous.  Each part still knows what it needs to connect and the impulse to connect is free to express again.  Recovery is seeing all of those pieces moving simultaneously and on their own to form something that can adhere to itself.  Session after session I get to see this.  That’s why this type of recovery is so beautiful.  That instinct–so central that it is redundantly built into every part and every cell–already knows how to heal.  Like all growth–when it happens–it happens everywhere and all at the same time.

Our only task is to create environments that allow what already exists the space to safely express.

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