Tree, With Regrowth

Therapy today was … well, what words adequately describe an excellent therapy session? Fun? Certainly not. Good? Is too bland, inadequate. Tiring? Yes! But too negative.

Therapy today was a time of understanding, and of growth.

I came to understand why I’m so tired at the moment: it’s linked to my anhedonia (inability to experience happiness or pleasure); I’m expending an awful lot of energy repressing my emotions and not thinking about things. When I first realized this, partway through today’s session, I began the old “why am I still doing this? I thought I was past this!” routine, before I remembered that being “happy-not” for me is a defence mechanism at the moment. I can’t feel happy, because I’m not allowing myself to feel the tremendous pain inside me, nor the shame, nor the fear, nor the guilt. The two emotions I seem capable of are frustration and anger – and I don’t enjoy either of those!

Basically, a few years ago my life began to fall to pieces. Like a huge old tree trunk which had become rotten in its core, my life collapsed under its own weight. It was a public, shaming fall from grace. It was painful. It still is painful! My roots were torn from the ground and lay exposed to the cold air, instead of nestling cosy and warm in nourishing soil. My mighty limbs, once so capable and reaching for the light, were cracked and bruised and even snapped off in places. My leaves, those delicate, beautiful parts of me which reached for and rejoiced in the sunlight, were drying out and fading – and were no longer giving me the nourishment I needed.

Falling over hurt. Having fallen over still hurts.

But now I see myself like this:

Tree with regrowth

There are new, young branches sprouting from this fallen trunk.

I don’t yet know how many years it will take until they’re as strong as the old ones were. I don’t know what shape this strange new tree will be, with these branches growing at right angles to the old trunk.

I do know they’re growing, slowly but surely – and I’m curious enough to hang around to see the end result.

6 Comments

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6 responses to “Tree, With Regrowth

  1. That was truly beautiful. I only joined this an hour ago and this was the first blog I read. Stunning. I hope they are all this good x

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  2. I love your analogies. They’re always spot on, and this one is like poetry. Raw, tear-jerking poetry. It’s so true though. No tree wants to fall, or be burned in a fire, but from those dying trunks come new life. Something new will come and it will be wonderful 🙂

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    • Your words are very kind. Yes, I do feel just like that – I didn’t want to fall down, I wish it hadn’t happened, but now that the regrowth is beginning to appear, I sometimes feel a very real sense of optimism about what might come 🙂

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  3. Plants are such great fodder for analogies, aren’t they? If I remember correctly, you have an umbrella tree which has taken a hit or two but still keeps growing – maybe a bit bent, or stunted here or there, but still growing!

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