"Shoot that poison arrow to my heart..."
ABC - 1982
I had an EFT tapping session with my friend Karla today. She is one of my favourite people. She mirrors the things to me that I love and feel are true about myself. She is a sensitive empath and so am I. She was born in the summer and so was I. She always has a rad, beachy vibe, even in the dead of winter. We even both have daughters named Summer – and they each call each other, affectionately, ‘Other Summer’. She is my soul sister, she was born to be a healer and today in our tapping session, she helped guide me to the greatest gift. Clarity.
We are both completing our certifications as EFT Tapping practitioners and so we had scheduled a zoom session together. When we are practicing with one another it is not “roleplaying” …we don’t make up scenarios. We share the real-life issues that are top of mind and then, as we guide each other through tapping points – acupressure points – we are able to access deeper issues and feel those trapped emotions as they get unearthed and move energetically out of our bodies. We can’t fake it. We have to get real with each other in order to affirm that we are having success. It is how we measure our ability to guide others through healing.
Today my “issue” (which has been remarkably amplified in the last month or so) was being highly triggered by my little Summer. She is 6. She is energetic and a force of creativity and light. She is an old soul with a bright heart, a fabulous sense of style and humour and her sunny disposition lives right up to her name. Her contribution to our family, now more than ever, is her ability to keep things light hearted but authentic - even when we are discussing the loss of Darcy. She says the wisest things when I cry, with so much confidence…like, “We need to be comfortable with this now, Mom.” She has learned to show up for Miller and I in a way that is so supportive. Every time we are sad, she rises to the occasion by hugging us both tightly or zipping off to create a little piece of art or a bookmark that says “I miss Dad too!” She is just incredible and I cherish her. She is also a child who forgets how to get her own stuff , where her dirty socks belong, and she loves to yell “MAMA!!!!” at the top of her lungs as soon as she feels an inkling of a need, question or wants to share something. I love being her Mama. I want her to feel cherished. I do not, however, love being her Sherpa and her (unpaid) personal assistant.
Here is the Summer story I shared with Karla to set up our tapping session…
Yesterday, I was feeling intensely peaceful on my yoga mat. Both kids were set up with food, water and activities to buy me 60 minutes of valuable breathwork. About halfway through my practice, the yelling began. “MAMA!!!!” hollered Summer from the sofa in the next room. (TRIGGER!) I didn’t answer. I thought I would give her a chance to rethink whatever her impulse was and allow her to manage it herself. This wasn’t her first rodeo…we have been through this a thousand times and it usually doesn’t end well unless she figures it out for herself. “Come on Sum. You can do it.” I thought silently to myself. “I know you can re-evaluate the situation and meet your own need without me having to abandon my glorious Kundalini Lotus pose” (My legs spread wide in the air, fingers wrapped around my big toes, perched at the perfect angle…glamorous). I honestly didn’t know if I could get BACK into that balanced state again OR if I would even be able to walk when I collapsed back onto my mat. (Side note * If she was bleeding, I would get off my mat…I promise…).
No such luck. Here came the wail again…”MAMA!!!!!” (TRIGGER) Deep breath. Wait. And again “MAMAAAAAA!!!!” That’s it. TRIGGER. Fall out of posture. Minor explosion. 6-year-old in tears. Mom guilt spewing all over like I got stabbed in the jugular. Ugh. This circuit. I have talked it through with BOTH my therapists, endlessly. I discuss it with friends, openly. (Mamas, I know I am not alone here!) This past month I just do NOT seem to be able to escape the intensity of that trigger and it feels awful. It feels like shame for Summer. Shame for me. A major let down as I try to work toward curating a peaceful, eventually blissful, life with these kiddos, without their Dad. That is my goal and it feels like I am failing, miserably.
By the time Karla and I were together, a whole day had gone by since that incident and there had been profuse apologies, age-appropriate explanations and LOTS of treats! I thought it was over but I was very wrong. As I sat with Karla and told her about the trigger, she thoughtfully approached it as we tapped through the points and verbalized the frustration I was feeling. As she used MY words to guide me through the layers of MY psyche, I felt emotions rising that I wasn’t even aware of. Just when I thought I had thought all my thoughts on this subject, something completely new was downloaded from way, way deep in my heart.
Here is what I got…
The trigger = Summer yells “Mama!”
= “I feel anxious and triggered because she needs me for something.” (Not a new sensation)
= “I am the ONLY one here to help her.” (Also, not a new realization)
= “I am now alone as a parent to these two precious kids “(Still not news to me!)
= “That is A LOT of pressure on me.” (Been there. Felt that.)
= “Their Dad, my incredible husband, has died.” (Also, not news…feeling that every day)
= I MISS Darcy.
Ding Ding Ding!!!!! This is the NEWS. This is the download! Here is the clarity. We made the right connection and the lights came on.
This is the explanation for the trigger being so intense. The root cause that seems SO obvious now, but really wasn’t. It was hidden. It is a form of self-preservation…to keep these feelings buried until we are ready to be confronted by them and feel them and move them through and out of the body. Buried deep is where these emotions cause a kind of “plaque” build-up that causes pain and dis-ease. Unearthing all this build-up is how we are able to heal and become free from it all.
I realized in that moment that I have taken the time to honour Darcy for his contributions to our lives. I have exalted Darcy for the father and husband he was. I have grieved that Darcy is no longer here with us in his earthly form. I have sat in gratitude for the fact that my children and I were loved by him. But I have not allowed myself to just…miss him.
This is the magic of tapping, people. I can discuss these situations endlessly with caring, loving, intelligent therapists and friends but my rational brain always wants to get in the way by interrupting my feelings with logic. My rational brain is smart and tricky and capable of protecting me from having this kind of confrontation with my true feelings. My mind wants to keep me safe from pain, you see… but my body and my heart, working together? They want me to heal.
I will NEVER uncover the deep root of an issue as quickly and precisely as I can by allowing MY body to reveal MY trapped emotions with its physical response to MY own words. On its own timeline. And only when I am ready for whatever is about to arise. There literally could not be a more perfect way to process and heal on one’s own divine schedule. When the timing is right, it is a magical game of connect the dots. Today, Karla held the pen and I let the ink flow… dot to dot to dot. (Thank you, lady. You were MADE for this. xo)
It feels amazing to uncover a secret like this. On a grief trek like mine, this is like finding a message in a bottle. The message that tells you what your next right move is.
In this case, my message is to go sit with a journal or lie under the moon and stars and allow myself to get lost in all the ways I MISS him. For as long as I need to.
And then I will be able to let him go a little more and get myself and the kids that much closer to our bliss. Trigger-free.
Til Next Time,
Heal & Be Healed.
My beautiful trigger.