Thursday, February 23, 2006


At my last session with Kathy, I shed some tears. Yes, most of the tears were because we were parting, but another set of tears was because I knew I hadn't fulfilled one of my heart's desires.

Over the course of my therapy, Kathy asked that I make a collage, and as time progressed, I added more and more things to that collage. Well, a couple of weeks had passed since I'd added anything to my collage, but I still carried the collage with me to the last session. When Kathy asked about the collage, I was overwhelmed, and my eyes filled with tears. Why? Simply because I had not honored my hearts desire to collage more often--it was that simple. I had a desire to do more collaging, and I hadn't taken time to honor that, and it upset me to no end. Kathy assured me that my collaging days didn't need to be over and that I should continue to use this tool to deal with my stress and trauma. So, today I started a collaging scrapbook. This way I can make as many collages as I like and they'll be contained in one book. But, I'd like to share the original collage with you guys. My little raw work of art. All of the pictures were collected over time and represent different parts of my progress within my therapy sessions. Here goes:

The collage actually had an outside cover. The outside represented what our sessions were about: my having choices, staying one step ahead of my anger, trying to shut the alarm off so that I can get to my mental files, tuning in to my feeling, emotions, taking time to slow down... But the middle had a cutout which foreshadowed what I was actually going through: feeling lost. (That's the word "lost" in the middle.)

It's hard to see everything in the collage, but the inside represents my stressful feelings and the tools I'm using to deal with the stress and trauma.

Here's a closer shot of the right side of the collage. The lided container represents things that are going on inside that I don't have to deal with today. They can neatly be stored here until I'm ready. The clock represents my ability to slow down and stay in the "now." The words "imagine," "wait to rage!," "wait to explode," all speak for themselves. The mirror represents truly seeing myself. And it's hard to see, but the words SOS and FREEDOM are written all over the collage. SOSing is a tool I use to refocus. And FREEDOM represents the steps I take to addressing my stress and trauma:

Focus, self-orient, slow down
Recognize triggers
Evaluate emotions
Evaluate thoughts
Define goals
Organize Options
Make a contribution

On the left side, there's a picture of a file (hard to see, it's at the top right). And the file represents my brain and the files I'm unable to get to when my stress and trauma alarm is blaring. The word sensitive is on here; I get overly sensitive when I'm stressed. You see that black, tiny radio at the bottom right. The word "can't" is next to it; this represents how I can't "tune in" to my true feelings when I'm stressed. To the bottom left, a lady is opening some blinds, and next to her is a window with blinds and a flower in the front. This shows how I'm slowing opening up and how "beautiful" (hence the flower) my outlook is becoming. And last, to the top left is a plastic, see through file, a paper shredder, and two trash bins. This represents the stuff I am willing to see and deal with. Stuff that I've decided to shred and throw away in the trash.

Phew! Maybe one day I'll share my collage scrapbook with you guys.

Yes, I'm missing Kathy, but I am hard at work with the skills she's helped me to cultivate. I hope to make her proud. I hope to make myself proud. I hope to make all of you proud.

Next topic:

Anywho, remember when I asked you guys to submit photos for my "A Glimpse Into My Life Through Pictures and Blurbs" project? Well, no one did. It's okay. I know folks are busy and don't have time to be playin' around wit no darn photos. But, I put mine together, and I wanted to share it with you all. I have take my theme from all of the work I'd done with Kathy. I took some photos of my different emotions and pieced them together as a little slide show. I'm titling this piece: Traumatic Emotions.

You know the drilll, click on the following link and choose the album titled Traumatic Emotions. Then choose slideshow. Here's the link: And please feel free to submit your photos if you so desire (my email:


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It was good having you over. I'll see you all latas!