The Mud Hole
Many changes are happening on many levels. I am very slowly getting back into life again. One thing remains constant. This grief. The tears and disbelief at how this could have happened well up in me like a slowly rising volcano from deep within my body. I imagine this grief as a mud hole. I sit in this mud hole as life goes on above me on the “earth level.” I sit there in the sticky darkness, my knees hugged tightly to my chest. I cry for my little boy and I wonder what happened to my world as I knew it up there on “earth level.” I have dropped down to a layer that is both miserable and yet nearer to this amazing energy that is me. That is my life. Barry experiences these changes also. Witnessing the slow and certain death of our beautiful child is bringing about transformation and penetrating our many human layers.
The Gift of Therapy
Before Oisin’s diagnosis, I was already preparing. I didn’t know it at the time. As a Clinical Psychologist in adult mental health, I was becoming more interested in forms of therapy that compliment the talking therapies. I was looking for ways “in” to trauma and the source of all the pain the body carries. We are like the layers of an onion. Talking gets to some of the layers and how deep we reach depends on how safe a person feels in their relationship with a therapist. Its like infant to mother. An infant will only explore when it has established a secure and loving base with mother. I was beginning to experience the healing work of creative therapies like Art, Drama, Music and movement. Creative expression can bring people out of their head and into their heart, they can help us to access the deeper layers of the self.
The week I went back to work, I arranged a session with a Kinesiologist, which had been given to me as a gift from my dear friend. I didn’t know too much about it other than it being a form of therapy that works with both body and mind. After a brief initial interview, I found myself lying up on a table with a lady asking my body questions. To my surprise my body seemed to answer! How do I put this kind of experience into words? I sobbed and wailed my way through most of the session. At one point I was in a role play where I was Oisin and the kinesiologist was me. It was a beautiful moment.
I was given another gift, Ira Greenberg, who works with energy in the body. The moment I stepped into his office I felt safe. I felt listened to. Some people have presence. I wonder if it is the ability to provide a heart to heart connection without the ego getting in the way. In this session I experienced a similar and deeper kind of state that I experience when I meditate. I talked to him about the image I had of the mud hole and he helped me to use imagery to change it. I dropped through its layers and got nearer to the beautiful light within me. My truth. My core. My entire body was energised and even more specifically I experienced the energy coming from each chakra. I barely knew about chakras before all this, other than them being part of all that “alternative stuff.” My body had gone through something that my head couldn’t put into words.
I shared with Ira an experience I had in meditation during one of Oisin’s final days with us. In my mind’s eye I saw a classic looking, brown robed and hooded monk. At first I saw just one monk (my head interpreted it as the grim reaper because there was no visible face) then there was a circle of monks, all standing around Oisin’s bed. I discovered that this was a common experience. Loved ones report seeing beings, angels or past relatives around the dieing. The dieing person often reports seeing them too. We wondered if Oisin was glimpsing into this realm in his final week, because he kept pointing at something in the bedroom. It opened up a conversation where Barry and I spoke with Oisin about this beautiful place that he could go to if he was ready. We told him we would always love him. It was one of the many heart breaking and beautiful moments we shared with him. Oisin seemed to be one step in our world and one step in another in those final days. It is a comfort to feel that Oisin was so prepared and guided towards his own death. He wasn’t alone. He was holding the hands of love. They were all waiting for him to arrive.
Getting Back to Work
I am slowly getting back to work. There has been no pressure. I have the space I need to take my time. If I need to leave, there are no questions asked. It has never been as bad as my first week and I like the different focus that work brings. I am looking forward to slowly starting client work again. Last weekend I took a trip to Dublin to participate in a four day professional training. It was training in a model that primarily works with trauma. I had a strong pull towards doing it after reading the initial blurb. This training came at exactly the right time for me and I am so excited by it. It marries in with all that I was looking for before I left work to be with Oisin. All the ideas I had about needing a therapy that could get people out of their heads and into their body, to really work with trauma without re-traumatising. All of those ideas have been put together by this fearless woman, Lisa Schwartz, and she delivered a training that we also experienced. I found it incredibly healing, I witnessed it in other participants and I know it is going to be of great value to the people with whom I work. Lisa has partnered up with a lovely Glaswegian Psychiatrist who was working on getting the science bit into the work using neuro-biology and imaging. I can’t tell you how exciting it is to have a model that works with the trinity of body, mind and spirit and is boldly stepping its way towards being a “main stream” therapy.
All the therapies I have tried will be detailed in the help and support section of this blog.
We have continued to attend Anam Cara. We have started to make a few more connections with others and we are meeting parents who have had a similar experience to our own. Anam Cara regularly hold events in Barretstown for the whole family. We went along to their Easter family fun day. There was a tree planing ritual that they do to open the day, where a poem is read and each person takes a stone and places it by the tree in honour of the beautiful butterfly children. The sun shone with piercing strength on us as we placed our stones around the tree. It was a moving and tearful moment for me. The rest of the day was very relaxed. Cilly went horse riding, played crazy gold, decorated fairy cakes (and ate them), did some arts and crafts and finished the day with an Easter Egg hunt. He carried the egg basket for his team, a role he too VERY seriously!
Cilly “Grass Hopper” Boy!
Cilly is a bright and shining light that fills my heart with love. Settling into the Grass Hopper room of a local play school has been an opportunity for him to shine as his own bright star and without his usual attachments. There are beautiful green spaces where he can look for rabbits and see the cows in the field. There are woodland areas with fairy doors that the children like to knock at. The carers are all very loving, as are the group of children he is with. He loves “circle time” where he can chat and sing. There is so much he is going to really enjoy about being a “Grass Hopper” in his play school. For now, he is working his way through his fears and sadness at leaving me. For now, I hold a confidence in him that he is going to be one very happy and very wonderful Grass Hopper soon!!
Cilly has also been busy meeting up with his cousin and friends. I went to a Kundalini Yoga workshop in Clonakilty whilst Cilly headed off on a plane over to England to visit his cousins, Tom and Teddy. It was Tom’s birthday, which he celebrated with Thomas the Tank engine at the Didcot Railway Museum, Oxford. Cilly’s cousins Joseph and Annie came to visit us over Easter. More Easter egg hunts! Joe really noticed Oisin’s absence from our home. He still has that special connection to him. Pictured below are some visiting friends from over Dublin way.
Skype with Ram Dass
Last night we had a skype session with Ram Dass, author of the book Be Here Now and well known Spiritual Teacher in America. Now here is a man, a man who has lived a life, tucking into his eighties and seems to exist as both human and being, traversing the different planes. His big smile, his sense of humour and this warmth that radiated without any strings attached really came through. He was far from some untouchable Guru. He offered answers to our many questions about Oisin. To give you a flavour, I asked Ram Dass if Oisin was enlightenend. After a pause, he told me “no. the next one.” (i.e. his next life). Another pause. Then his big blue eyes stared right at us and this smile lit up across his face, “Pretty good going, hugh! ” followed by a big hearty laugh that spread into our hearts.
As we go forward
Overall, Barry and I are trusting our intuition more. We have lost a layer of fear that we once had. There are endless times when we miss Oisin and long to have him in our arms. There are as many times and more when we feel blessed by his constant, unconditional, radiating love that is all around us. He really wants us to know he is here with us and his life was a beautiful gift. I am learning to walk my road with my heart and I am learning to trust that my feet know exactly which way to go. When I stumble, I know it’s okay. I have some pretty amazing souls holding me.