The first time I left therapy, I ended up going back a few weeks later. It just wasn’t the time. But now is the time and I’ve been out of therapy a couple of months. I think I’ve done really well.
I reached a point where I no longer wanted to reflect on my past and the pain that I have suffered, I really wanted to start looking at the future and building and leaving the past where it should be, the past.
We never truly outrun our past no matter what anyone says. Our past is who we are, its our foundational make up. It’s often unpleasant and we don’t like to think about it but you don’t have to, you just have to respect that it happened.
The thing about looking at the future is it can make you anxious and the thing about leaving the past behind is, that can make you anxious. When you spend five years in therapy talking about your trauma, abuses and other such evils, you can become institutionalised around it. I have forgotten how to not be patient. For five years almost every week I would attend a therapy session and have a place to take my pain and a place to discuss my woes and a place to plan for my next move and now that’s all gone. It’s just little old me, left alone to motivate herself, to keep up the self-care and self therapy.
Some of my more negative coping mechanisms have cropped up since I left therapy. I think this is expected in normal and I don’t feel the need to go running back. The slightest little things can trigger me some days, for example, I was clearing out a cupboard the other day when I accidentally smashed a photo frame. The sound of the shattering glass sent my brain straight back to the first time I had self harmed. The first time I ever felt true release, the first time I ever let my shoulders hang down loosely from my ears, the first time I had ever felt euphoria. So you can imagine what dealing with that was like for me.
It’s not the therapist I miss. I never made any real bond or attachment to any of the therapists I saw. I value them and I like them as people but it’s not that that I miss. It’s the safe space, it’s the neutrality, it’s the place that held no judgements or expectations of me, the only place I could ever truly be me. No wonder therapy became a new addiction.
I don’t know what the future brings. I hope it brings a long happy life full of health and no need to be in therapy. Life is what you make it, so they say. But our early life isn’t what we make it, it’s what others make it and we can’t change that. The only thing we can change is where we go from here.