nonionay: (goddesscross)
After a couple experiences at Orycon, I have a new question to ponder: How does one run a therapy session with a self-aware person, versus someone who just needs to talk? (With the caveat that these aren't mutually exclusive categories, of course.)

I met a man who talked about his heart-wrenching experiences with a mentally ill family member. All I did was sit with him, listen, and say things like, "that is a terrible thing to have to deal with" (and it's a good thing I didn't need to do more, since it was towards the end of a party, and I was smashed.) Another friend had a similar experience with this guy, and as she said, "Clearly, he needed to talk about it." Did I help him? I don't know, but I don't think I hurt him.

I also talked with a friend who has had difficulty finding a good therapist, since he's very self-aware and doesn't need insights he's already gained parroted back at him. I can sympathize, since I've often had that experience myself.

But I have had good (informal) therapy sessions that I think managed to combine these. So I'm thinking about what made those sessions effective. In all of them, the therapist's presence is really the big thing. The people who have helped me have this very solid sense of wisdom about them, and it's pleasant just to sit with them, because it really does feel like they can hold and comprehend all this pain that I've been burdening myself with.

One of those times, I think my friend was telling me things I already knew, (You make everyone's problems your own) but the fact it was _him_ telling me was relieving. Someone I trusted and respected and carried a lot of authority both in his demeanor and experience. (I think he might have actually said, "_WE_ make everyone's problems our own.") There is validation of a path I've been walking, until then, alone.

Maybe it's a matter of being able to stop my brain dead in its tracks and force me to sit with my own pain, rather than thinking about it in an abstract manner. I mean, I do think that peering at my issues from every angle possible is useful, but in the end, I just need to stop and metaphorically hold in my hands the leaden, velvet-lined casket that is a statement like, "I make everyone's problems my own."

Musing

Mar. 27th, 2013 08:30 am
nonionay: (goddesscross)
This morning, I realized that this weekend's Norwescon is going to be my first real convention since I had my series of nervous breakdowns last fall, along with the subsequent Wellbutrin treatments, personal revelations and choices and the major personality changes that have come with this. I'm curious to see what this will be like, if nothing, it will at least remind me of the parts of myself that still are. (namely, my hatred of being in a room crammed with hundreds of people like sardines.)

Hypothesis

Oct. 17th, 2009 09:24 am
nonionay: (Default)
Desire is caused by neuroses.
I'm not talking about basic desires like the need for food and stuff, but rather everything else. I think I'm going to classify lust as a basic desire. (The desire for specific sorts of people, however, that totally falls into what I'm talking about. Personality-wise, not gender-wise.)

Therefore, desire (and the Buddhist suffering it brings) can be curbed by proper management of your neuroses, rather than trying to stop the desire directly. And of course I'm not talking about ignoring and/or cutting off your neuroses, but the more complicated process of understanding and loving those weird little complexes that make us us.
nonionay: (Default)
I think I figured out an apt metaphor for my seizures.
Imagine you're an airplane, flying over a vast, cloudy landscape. The airplane is your conscious mind, and/or your body. The landscape is the personal and/or collective unconscious (depending on how Jungian you feel). The pilot's the Ego, the passengers are probably other relevant factors--emotions, rationality, anima/us, Ruach, whatever. Possibly some of the passengers are in a closed compartment. Possibly they've stowed away and have locked themselves in the bathroom.


The brain wires itself in strange ways. for instance, on this interminable print job I'm running right now, every time I unload the output tray, (which involves a very specific set of body positions and movements. It puts some annoying strain on my back.) I think of the henchmen from the Venture Brothers. Don't know why. Maybe I was thinking about them the first time I did it. Eventually this association becomes self-reinforcing. I'll go to the output tray and think, "hey, whenever I do this, I think of the henchmen from The Venture Brothers." And what do you suppose I think of?

If we take every element of me unloading the output tray--the series of movements and relationships of objects to my body, the emotions (gee, this job's easy but annoying), the state of my body (I'm a little hungry and coming down with something, but feeling mostly satisfied with my recent diet) my overall level of stress and excitement (economy, money, writing, friends, etc.) and my ambient thoughts--we get a huge series of nodes. The act of unloading the output tray ties a bunch of potentially disparate things together. This is what is known as a complex. This one's small and mundane, but it may well be tied into a larger complex. (Probably something work-related. I don't know, call it an Athena Complex or something.)

For now, they're in my conscious mind. But even after they leave, those nodes will still be tied together. No matter how thin that line is, there will always be an association between longing for the half of a chocolate muffin sitting on my desk, and two guys in yellow butterfly costumes.

Getting back to the airplane metaphor, those masses of nodes and networks are down in those clouds. My seizures happen when there's an electrical problem with the plane, or maybe one of the passengers is busy banging on the walls for some reason. Maybe the freak in the bathroom's decided the time is right to jump out and hijack the plane, (or maybe they'll just try to use the time of the seizure itself to do that.)

So the plane's gone haywire, and is swooping down into the clouds. The passengers get a good or glancing look at what's down there, possibly whatever complex is closest. At least, part of a complex.
Passengers are jostled around. Things are vertiginous and nausous, both in the passengers and real-life me. Deja vu reigns (because I of course have seen the stuff in the clouds before) and sometimes both passengers and my whole self barf.

And that's roughly what it's like when I have a seizure. Medicine won't help. When I took it, it only got rid of the actual blackouts, which I don't have anymore. The aura stays no matter what. Sometimes, it's annoying, sometimes, it's fun.

It's easy to see why so many ancient epileptics were considered oracles. Not me. My young brain was stuffed with too much pop culture. I hear Popeye and Willy Wonka cackling in my ears instead of the gods.

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