Is that re­ally all it takes?

“She is still try­ing to fig­ure out how I could pos­si­bly re­mem­ber some­thing that hap­pened when I was six months old. Good luck to her! I don’t even un­der­stand this my­self.”

Living Now - - Contents - by Marl­yse Car­roll

“She is still try­ing to fig­ure out how I could pos­si­bly re­mem­ber some­thing that hap­pened when I was six months old. Good luck to her! I don’t even un­der­stand this my­self.”

GABRIELLE’S CLIENT WAS a man called John. He was an at­trac­tive sin­gle fa­ther in his late thir­ties who worked as a chef and looked af­ter his young daugh­ter. Both of them lived with his mother.

Although a de­voted fam­ily man, John had ex­pe­ri­enced dif­fi­cul­ties with in­ti­mate re­la­tion­ships through­out his life. He had un­der­taken a se­ries of breath­work ses­sions to help him get to the core of his re­la­tional prob­lems. His in­ten­tion was to gain enough con­fi­dence to at­tract a lov­ing part­ner who would also be a good step­mother to his lit­tle girl.

Right from his first breath­work ses­sion John stood out as be­ing very aware of what was hap­pen­ing within him dur­ing the process, and of remembering most of it af­ter­wards. Much more so than most other peo­ple.

Ses­sion af­ter ses­sion, much sad­ness and anger reached con­scious­ness and was re­leased. On his fifth ses­sion, once more anger rose within him. This time it was so strong that Gabrielle had to help him re­lease it with­out in­jur­ing him­self. He had rolled on his belly and was punch­ing the car­peted floor so hard she was fear­ing for his wrists and knuck­les.

She quickly pushed a cou­ple of thick cush­ions in front of him.

“How could she do that to me? The bitch!” he screamed. “She dropped me. Yet she did love me... I loved her too. And she dropped me.”

More kicks, this time on the cush­ions. “How could she…?” Af­ter a while he started cry­ing. His anger was spent, now re­placed by grief. Huge sobs rose from deep within him, like waves of dis­tress aris­ing and re­ced­ing from the cen­tre of his belly.

He cried for a long time, even­tu­ally whim­per­ing like an in­fant. Af­ter a while Gabrielle en­cour­aged him to re­sume cir­cu­lar breath­ing, to al­low for a full re­lease and in­te­gra­tion.

Within 15 min­utes or so, he en­tered a state of peace that matched in in­ten­sity the neg­a­tive emo­tions he had ex­pe­ri­enced ear­lier. He later said that he had never felt so dis­tressed and then so peace­ful in his en­tire life.

The ses­sion fin­ished with John bring­ing love and bliss to a place in his psy­che which had held hurt, fear, anger and grief for nearly as long as he had lived.

Later on, as John and Gabrielle de­briefed this ses­sion, John told her that he had fi­nally ar­rived at the core of his prob­lems with women.

In this ses­sion, he ex­pe­ri­enced him­self as a six month old baby. His mother and her younger sis­ter were there, play­ing with him. At some stage, his aunt picked him up and play­fully threw him up, to then catch him in a big hug. They had done that many times be­fore and both en­joyed this game very much.

His baby laugh­ter filled the air as she threw him up again, a lit­tle higher each time, and then some­thing to­tally un­ex­pected had hap­pened. She clum­sily failed to catch him and he fell face down all the way to the floor.

John re-ex­pe­ri­enced him­self as this in­fant who had just been ac­ci­den­tally dropped to the ground from nearly two me­ters high. Mother and aunt were be­side them­selves with worry and had taken him to hos­pi­tal. Although he wasn’t phys­i­cally in­jured, he now re­alised that the shock he suf­fered led to a huge emo­tional trauma which changed the course of his life.

In his al­tered state, John re­called not only the ac­ci­dent, he re­called with to­tal clar­ity two de­ci­sions he had then made about re­la­tion­ships: The first one was that he could not trust women. The sec­ond one was that peo­ple who loved him the most would also hurt him the most. Now, 38 years later, John was re­al­is­ing that these two core be­liefs had stood im­mutable and in­vis­i­ble be­tween him and all the women he had ever been at­tracted to. Out of fear he had never al­lowed true love in his life. Twice he had abruptly ended a bud­ding re­la­tion­ship with­out know­ing why.

He did now. He un­der­stood where his dif­fi­cul­ties came from. The im­men­sity of this dis­cov­ery left them both speech­less.

“Gabrielle”, he fi­nally said, “I think it’s gone now…” “What is gone, John?” “My dis­trust of women, my fear of love and close­ness…”. He paused and thought for a while. “It feels as if a huge black cloud has lifted from me.”

Another long si­lence fol­lowed, “I know it was an ac­ci­dent. She was just a kid, so young... I can still see her. She wore a blue dress… How amaz­ing, and I know that her clum­si­ness doesn’t mean any­thing about any­one else…”

John sud­denly looked taller, as if a big weight had been lifted from his shoul­ders. He kept talk­ing, un­rav­el­ling the story of his life, bring­ing light where there had been dark­ness. John rang Gabrielle the next day to tell her that he had asked his mother about this in­ci­dent. She con­firmed it had ac­tu­ally hap­pened.

“And”, he added, “she is still try­ing to fig­ure out how I could pos­si­bly re­mem­ber some­thing that hap­pened when I was six months old. Good luck to her! I don’t even un­der­stand this my­self…” n

Marl­yse, a re­tired breath­worker, is the co-founder of the In­ner Peace In­sti­tute for Well­be­ing and the best-selling au­thor of ‘Am I Go­ing Mad’.

By Marl­yse Car­roll, AKA Gabrielle

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