Progress. It is slow, and sometimes I don’t see it, but I am making progress.
Several situations have arisen over the last few stressful weeks that previously would have floored me.
What is more, my reaction to adverse stimuli is changing. In the past, if something upset me or someone hurt me I would loose the flying fingers of fury. My counter reaction was always immediate and out of proportion to the situation at hand.
If it were too hard, too painful, I would completely withdraw and turn the pain and anger inward until it became too hard to bear and I would enter a phase of emotional lockdown.
I’m not doing that. I have come close, but I have not gone there.
Now I am accepting these feelings of hurt, or sadness, or grief or anger or (perceived) rejection and just riding through it. I am allowing myself to feel these emotions.
I have not been balled up on the floor, incapable of doing anything; I have been allowing the tears to flow freely while I work on a simple task such as painting a wall. There is something soothing about the physical act of painting, and it doesn’t interfere with how I need to process emotion.
I still respond, but not immediately. I am working hard on stepping outside of my hurt and trying to work out what influenced the other person to say or do what they did.
This means my responses are less angry and more considered. I still have a long way to go, but this is progress.
I am taking it a step further and acknowledging my progress and congratulating myself when I can ride through it; when I can stop and change my counter-reaction.
This means I can do it. I am gaining a modicum of control.
I am climbing the mountain which is me.
This is progress.