“Severe Practice”

(Written in August 2008)
Kevin said the fall at the beginning of the Nia training was a bigger injury than I realized, that he had worried about me.  (I fell on some wet steps, such that the corner of a step hit me right in the middle of my back and knocked the wind out of me.)  It’s my typical pattern — to minimize something that hurts me.  And the other pattern I keep doing over and over: to fail to see my limits, try to do too much, and crash.  And now I’m angry at myself for not seeing it coming and behaving more reasonably, and angry at myself for not having the strength to do the things I wrongly imagine I can do.  Well, what was it like for me as a child?  I was told “you should have known better”, instead of being given compassionate guidance, and loaded up with responsibilities that were beyond my capacity, so I think that’s normal.  I did manage to get to the crying with Kevin — the one where the belly wall moves in & out involuntarily.  I also reminded myself of times when I trusted the process and things worked out all right.
Kevin says my life is a “severe practice.” That seems like a very accurate description.  In the work with Kevin I remembered how the Dancer painting came out of disappointment acknowledged, felt fully, and then allowed to find expression.  We also talked about letting go completely and trusting the process.  I was able to remember times of trusting the process and how it worked, contrary to my learning early in life that the process/environment is not trustworthy — but I can’t remember any now.  Kevin knows to ask of good memories “How does that feel in your body?” and it felt more alive, like muscles were muscles again not just stuffing.  I had a brief hit of that feeling of being like a planet.

Kevin Frank is an amazing bodyworker in Holderness, NH.  His wife is Caryn McHose who is my trauma therapist.  They both work with the mind/body interface.  See their website for more information.

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