Example 8 Healing of Pain

When the certainty arose that no matter what I did, where I was, what people did for me, the pain would go on, the certainty was a healing crisis. I had spent a day at work going through the whirlpool of painful feelings and thoughts over and over again. It was a certainty that was the result of years of intense therapy that still left so much pain. Of course I had made changes, but none that took away the misery I was suffering. I had realised that it wasn’t buried trauma that had caused my incredible hurt, it was habits that I had  picked up from the culture I was raised in. Habits that meant you were a failure if you left your family to live with another woman; habits that meant you were a failure if you couldn’t even love the woman you had chosen; habits that meant you couldn’t fit into ‘normal’ society; habits that left me eaten up with guilt.

When I arrived home H was out. Up rose the loneliness and pain. The circle started again – If I was with my family this pain wouldn’t arise. But if I was with my family I would want to be with H. Memories of past pain with my family arose. Wherever and whenever I was there was pain. For all my life I had been looking for a way to heal it, escape it, cover it up, work it out, run away from it – no escape.

I stood looking out of the window in the end bedroom, not knowing what to do, where to go, how, what, when, where?

H arrived home. I could feel my pain cutting me off from any flow to her. She came into the room. I could see on her face the effect of weeks of living with my uncertainty, my misery and her own. Her whole body sagged as she saw me still in a desperate state of mind. I was already in the groove to spread yet more gloom. To make her feel as fearful of being in her own home as I had grown to be because of the misery it caused me. With an effort I acted out as much warmth of meeting as I could. I walked up to her smiling and kissed her and hugged her. I backed this up by the certainty that there was no way out. I saw her whole body and face change as she relaxed. I could see her drop the anxiety of being hit yet again by my remarks my feelings my condition. It worked. From that day on I have known more peace than I have in the last two years. I have to act out the good feelings but it is working. If it goes on – it will be more peacefulness than ever before in my life. And it is possible for it to go on because it does not depend on outward things, situations and people for its existence. It depends on the certainty that there is nowhere to go – there are no answers to my problems – my pain cannot be healed – there is nothing people can do for me. That pain was an awful habit I had got into, I was learning to built new habits. I was learning how to build a new life.

I realised from all this that there was no cure for the pain I had felt as it was habits I had inherited or developed, and the only way was to develop new habits. Hard but it has worked. See Habits and Eight Step Method to Manage Intense Emotion


-mari 2012-09-12 21:39:31

Hi Tony,

“there is nowhere to go – there are no answers to my problems – my pain cannot be healed – there is nothing people can do for me. That pain was an awful habit I had got into, I was learning to built new habits. I was learning how to build a new life.”

This is what I am learning to do. There is no map for me to consult in how to get there because “there” doesn’t exist yet. I too have lived through and survived my own trauma and years of hell… I have a great therapist who won’t tell me what to do or how to go about it, she is just there for me, but I still feel so lost…

What do you mean by “That pain was an awful habit I had got into, I was learning to built new habits.” how do you do that? do you mean that at some point you come to the realization that you have to abandon the wound, the old pain?

    -Tony Crisp 2012-09-16 11:08:01

    Mari – That is true, but today I am in constant peace. When I look back I am amazed that such change has taken place. But it is all explainable.

    What do you mean by “That pain was an awful habit I had got into, I was learning to built new habits.”

    This is quite a wonderful challenge to answer your question. And it started a long time ago, because I had to learn things without which no change could have taken place. I do not mean book learning, but learning by living it. The first thing I remember learning was that I could change habits. Fortunately it was a simple habit. I noticed that as I walked through the building I worked in I left the doors open. I believe I had read somewhere that the only difference between a criminal and a successful person was their habits. So whenever I left a door open I would close it – even if I had forgotten and walked on, I turned around and closed it. Within a short time it became anew habit to close doors, all done now without effort. So that was the first thing I learned, and then moved into greater challenges with our psychological habits. These were hard because many of them were unconscious and I had to dig deep to find them. See http://dreamhawk.com/approaches-to-being/lifes-little-secrets/.

    The next thing I needed to learn was that we are all victims, but we do not admit it. What I mean is that we are all victims of beliefs, convictions, word people say, what people or parents have told us or hit us about – and I am not talking about traumas. We are all born victims of circumstance. But we need not remain a victim.

    Your natural response to your environment is to be influenced by it. A disturbing event would stimulate you to feel fear, a calming event to feel pleasure. Your moods are usually influenced by what happens to you. So being in prison would be more depressing than being free. Being rejected would cause more pain than being admired or loved.

    Our emotions and feelings about ourselves are like a keyboard that is played upon by people and events. If we are praised or rewarded our self confidence and therefore performance will usually be enhanced. That is fine except it means we will usually depend upon the world to create our moods and our sense of our own value. This makes us victims. We may not be dependent on a drug, but on praise, success, being admired or wanted. Without them we may experience the lows the drug user does on withdrawal.

    So we need to see how events, words, our own thoughts are playing on our own victimisation. If you learn these two you are taking steps toward your own wellbeing. Change the habit of being a victim.

    There is so much more to say, but I will carry on if you ask me, and maybe write a small book about it – when I have time.


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