Removing rocks from the stream.

Some time ago I had the pleasure of attending an excellent talk by Author, Colm Tobin. Amongst a number of other inciteful issues, he spoke about a time in his life when he received help from the Psychiatrist Ivor Browne, in order to face and process the loss of his father. Ivor Browne likened this work to removing a stone from a previously flowing stream – a stone that had stopped the stream in it’s tracks and forced the water to either alter it’s course or sometimes stop all together.

The traumatic events that we do not process healthily, that we do not truelly experience, feel, & accept, become like these rocks and although we think ‘oh that was years ago, I have dealt with all that’, if we haven’t really felt the feelings and learnt to get through them and continue on our way, they have a habit of remaining until we do so, and they can take alot of our energy to keep them in their place. Also our ‘flow’ is slowed, diverted and diluted. In order to learn from all our life experiences we need to actually experience them in the first place, sometimes this is just too painful to contemplate, so we tidy the event away into a drawer and we develop all sorts of clever strategies for not getting it out and really looking at it.

A perfect example of this is a recent Client of mine. During her consultation, every time I asked about how she felt about the death of her Mother, she skillfully began talking about something else entirely or she would talk around the subject, telling me about how everyone else in her family felt, but never her own feelings. She came to me with a chronic problem of a constantly dripping nose and eyes that watered at the slightest trigger, she had terribly dry skin despite drinking lots of water and her bowels were very sluggish. After taking the Homeopathic remedy Natrum-Mur, she was able to finally feel the intense grief that she had been hiding (from herself), for nearly 10 years, she had 24 hours of crying and grieving but crucially she felt such enormous relief afterwards – very tired but released from the huge burden she had been carrying around for so long.  Her physical symptoms one by one disappeared and quite literally her flow was restored – the rock had been removed!

This example is just one of hundreds I can give, over the years I have been helping people with Homeopathy, and often ‘the rock’ is not quite as obvious nor does it produce such literal physical symptoms, but the basic principle is almost always the same. I have worked with many people who have been suffering with chronic problems of inflammation in their joints or their guts or their sinuses or skin, people who, over time have revealed deep seated issues of unresolved anger and rage. People who have managed to finally release these “messy” emotions and learn that it is actually OK to feel anger and express it, providing it’s appropriate and in proportion, that the worse thing for their health is not to be able to express it. Unexpressed anger remains, sometimes for the rest of our lives, while it slowly grows to poison and ‘inflames’ the body. Anger is very difficult to hold on to and often spills out at the slightest provocation – how many people do you know who seem to get disproportionately angry at the tiniest of things?  I have also worked with many people who have needed to resolve deep-rooted fear/s, who have become stuck in a highly anxious and fearful state about everything, who are literally and figuratively paralysed with fear because they were unable to resolve and let go of some fearful situation.

The wonderful thing about working with Homeopathy is that this process, whilst it needs careful management, does not need to take years and does not necessarily require the Client to express their feelings to the Practitioner. If managed well by your Homeopath, you should feel gently guided and supported through this essential emotional healing, so that physical healing can take place equally gently. Also once someone starts to truelly heal, all sorts of stuff that may have been ‘put away in a drawer’ somewhere can pop out to be looked at, processed and then let go of. It is this releasing that means that general energy is freed up and available for day to day use and the whole system gets a re-boot!

I remember during my own health journey, a time when I was working with my Homeopath and I was taken by surprise by a book I was reading that triggered a large amount of unexpressed grief that I had been hanging on to around my Grandmother. I had a few hours of sobbing and remembering all that she had meant to me and then I felt better.  Her death had happened at a time in my life when I just couldn’t deal with it (during some critical exams at university), so I just ignored it and told myself well she was old, it was invitable etc etc……

You may ask do we have to re-experience every trauma that’s ever happened to us in order to be well? How do I tell if I’m ‘hanging on’ to unresolved issues? It can be simple – close your eyes and think about any given trauma/loss/anger/injustice, do you feel anything either in your physical body or emotionally? If you do, no matter how small the feeling, the chances are this is unfinished business – a rock or pebble that could be altering the course of your ‘flow’.  It’s also worth charting how long you have experienced any particular ill-health, do your own health timeline – you may be surprised at how often physical ill-health seems to come after some kind of emotional trauma.

Many women who I work with experience drastic changes in their health – emotional or physical – after Pregnancy or Childbirth or other times of hormonal change eg Menopause. Sometimes this is due to hormonal imbalances, sometimes it’s due to complex emotional issues that remain unresolved around the actual birthing experience or much deeper issues around our own childhood experiences. There’s nothing like becoming a Mother to really highlight any issues in the way we have been parented!  Similarly Menopause can mean a massive transition in life – its often the time adult children are leaving home for the first time so there’s a transition in our status as Mothers. It can also be the time we are retiring from jobs or just that we suddenly have more time on our hands. Many women go through a huge identity crisis during menopause – who am I if I can’t produce children anymore or my time as a hands on Parent is over, or if no one is employing me anymore? Most of the time if there is this crisis, it’s because in some way the activity of parenthood etc has been masking unresolved issues of self-confidence or damaging self-beliefs that have been in place and have prevented us from flowing in the way that was always intended. It’s lovely to work with women at this time in their lives and watch them embrace life and start experiencing who they really are, outside of any responsibilities they may have. It is never too late to notice those ‘stones’, to pick them up, have a good look, then put them down on the bank so they no longer interrupt your flow!