Monday, February 22, 2010

What Does Failure Look Like? (Failure, Part Quatro)

Pietro Abela, my dear friend, long time mentor, man-who-played-piano-at-my-wedding and English-Canadian type person I love long time, is gone off to Mexico to teach a class, and I can't talk to him about failure. He would be great at this. He would also tell me that I have developed enough of a sense of Self to be able handle this on my own. He capitalizes the word Self. He was the first man I ever met who taught me that men can be gentle, loving, kind and giving. That men can carry healing energy, as women often do, and that men can perhaps even heal in someone what is hurt seemingly beyond repair. To this day, he's the only man I trust to lay his hands on my body in a therapeutic setting, and he has never once violated my trust. He's an amazing person with a very special purpose, and I miss him right now.

But alas, he taught me well. When I was a massage therapist, I studied body-based counseling under Pietro's tutelage for a number of years, using the system he developed, now called, “A Return to Consciousness” (ARC). The idea behind it is to bypass the intellect and go straight to where an emotional issue lives in the body. It's very powerful work, designed to work directly with intellectual defenses so they will allow access to core issues very quickly. It's some of the most powerful work I've ever experienced. In fact, I credit it with saving my life, and that is not an exaggeration.

Once day maybe I will tell the story of the first time I met Pietro--but I don't want to digress. For now, here is my ARC session with myself. In poemish form.

What does failure look like?
A deformed, tarry mass. A bone
sticking through it. A single,
crippled arm. One mole eye.
Where inside your body does failure live?
In my ribcage, my
heart, my throat. Behind
my eyes. Lurking
in my spine, the backsides
of my teeth. Insidious.
What does failure need?
To be heard
What would failure say?
I was
helpless, too sad, too scared, too
bewildered to do anything.
I couldn’t speak.
I couldn’t protect them. I couldn't
protect myself. I couldn't
move of my own volition. I remain
to this day defenseless.
What is sad for failure?
No one ever noticed.
What do you notice now?
I am angry at failure.
What does failure want?
To be invisible.
And what if failure is seen?
I can't survive it.
What does failure need right now?
Can you forgive failure?
No. I want it gone.
What would happen if it went away?
It’s too late.
What is too late?
Too late to be who I wanted
And who did you want to be?
And what if you were beloved? And what if you were worthy?
I'd teem. I'd roll
like the sea.
I'd walk
like a prom, like a
coronation. I would be:
Opera. Eyesore.
Full to bursting.


Jo-Ann Svensson said...

Your courage is astounding, "beloved"... keep teeming, rolling, and bursting from fullness. Its a wonder to behold.

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