The Healing Dance
Microsteps, leaps, upward bounds, & flying
Cocoon: transformation ain’t pretty, but butterflies are.
When I hit that core wounding, the realization that I didn’t want to be alive, I entered a period of deep depression, I figuratively cocooned myself like a caterpillar and dissolved into a puddle of goo.
I had to face that most secret and hidden belief that I held deeply within: not being alive was better. Free. Being in my body felt like punishment.
I felt like I needed to be punished.
Even though I had a husband, a daughter, furry kids, and a life that I loved, I still didn’t want to be here. It was a terrible, horrible realization, which I had been struggling with my whole life, but with time and the joys of my husband and daughter, I had buried this feeling very deeply. Buried, however, didn’t mean healed. Life still meant pain, betrayal, hurt, fear. Death was freedom from all of it.
I grieved this devastating realization and moments would catch me off guard as tears burned and stung my eyes, emotion closed up my throat, and other memories would push forth.
In my youth I remember screaming inside my head so many times, Why God? Why?!!
I guess some part of me was still screaming it, but the real question I always had was why am I being punished with this life? What did I do that was so horrible that I deserved this?
A huge part of me did not wish to be here, but there was a bigger part that did because I was loved truly and deeply. I loved myself, and I believed truly and deeply that there was a reason that I am here. I simply hadn’t found it, yet.
Through this healing journey though the reasons were becoming known – felt, seen, and heard. Self evident.
Once I stood inside the gates of my own inner hell, really looked at all that’s in there, really saw my inner, self-annihilation demon, and owned it, I was ready to work to heal my inner earth. It wasn’t pretty though.
I was a mess. I closeted myself away in my office writing for hours and hours as I feverishly worked to get my feelings and beliefs out so that hopefully they would no longer take up so much space in my head and emotions.
During this time I worked through long-suppressed memories and belief systems.
I pictured myself taking a hammer to these crystalline memories and destroying them, shattering them into tiny fragments, which I mentally put into a box and buried in a field. I gave them to the earth to be composted so I could forgive myself.
During this period of cocooning, my relationship with my husband and daughter suffered mightily. They couldn’t trust me to be there for them, and I was so inwardly focused that I didn’t get help before cocooning. I turned inward so hard that I didn’t even think about getting counseling help, or any kind of help for that matter.
I actually worried that my husband was going to divorce me during this three-month period. That part of my healing journey was incredibly hard on my whole family. They had no idea how to handle it. Frankly, neither did I.
After a rather painful showdown with my husband, I put myself back in a concentrated series of therapy sessions and began to reemerge.
With that concentrated therapy from my wonderful counselor, who held me accountable and helped me through it, I emerged from the icky goo. My wings were still stuck to my back and my eyes had a thin film of goo on them, but I could see the light again. I had really needed to stop believing that I was worthless and undeserving, a shameful and shame-filled, dirty person, that needed to be punished. Once I accepted that all of these were lies, and that I was no longer going to believe them, I was ready to let go of not wanting to be here.
Coccooning was a truly painful process as I worked hard both alone and with my counselor to dissolve myself completely, much like a caterpillar does. Emergence required serious work, but once I made it through this period, butterfly me dried her wings, flicked off the eye goo and realized that the truth is that I am an incredibly strong person, who had survived hell; a person, who had not only survived, but was conquering hell.
I danced my way forward.