So a lot is going through my mind this a.m.
First, though, let me not leave you in suspense. I did go to the aerial dance class last night. It was really hard work, but there were lot's of things about it that I liked. I liked spinning and swinging, and when S and I were dancing and pushing each other on the trapeze. I hadn't anticipated the trapeze to be so uncomfortable or that standing on it would be so much work. Talk about needing strong core muscles.
One of the things that I realized during the class, though, is that I was constantly comparing how well I could do things with other people in the room. As soon as I realized that I tried to let go of it and just do what my body felt comfortable with. But, later, when talking to S about my experience of the class, I realized that I was holding onto a lot of feelings of shame that I wasn't able to do what other people could.
While we were eating, S broached the subject of gifts. I had asked him what he would like as a gift for his birthday. He doesn't really enjoy gifts much...and doesn't really like things, in general (and when he needs something, he can just get it for himself). So last night he talked about what he would like to receive as a gift from me - a focus on increasing my strength and stamina. He says that he recognizes this could be a slow process, but he would like me to be better able to match his pace when hiking or swimming.
This is reasonable and doable, but intensified my earlier feelings about not being able to do what others could. I've been thinking about this and I know that a lot of these feelings are related to my sister and feelings of competition with her as a child...she being very athletic and I think she enjoyed playing sports. I always felt awkward in my body and unsure of my abilities which probably made me clumsier than I normally would have been.
Being active in my body is not always comfortable - I get overheated and get headaches. I don't like the way that I sweat at the drop of a hat. But I also know that when I am more active, I feel better about my life and myself.
I started reading a book last night about the relationship between our earliest childhood experiences and our bodies. It seems like it's going to be interesting and it helps me to think about my body experiences in that light, as well.
It also makes me think about a phenomenon I've experienced with my clients. The author posits that people aren't often able to look at negative feelings towards their parents because they are concerned about broaching some moral ideal of honoring their parents.
My wonderings are if my clients are not more worried that anger with their parents will lead them to hate them. I think that there's a worry that they will lose their parents in the process of coming to terms with the injuries that they experienced as children that still needs healing.
Okay, that's all the deep thoughts I have for today. I'm off now.