It’s been almost 2 weeks since I had my first CBT session with a dude I’m calling Bob. There was not much CBT about that first session, it was mostly just me bawling and offloading a lot of Stuff, but I feel a lot better.
The offloading was obviously necessary. It’s happened to me before – I’ve bottled something up, not even consciously so, and started struggling with a physical problem. In that case it was terrible stomach pains for 6 months that after a multitude of tests were just diagnosed as “IBS symptoms”. After I saw a therapist and offloaded to her and then some stuff to my husband (which was bloody hard), the pain disappeared overnight.
This time the anxiety and the insomnia got taken care of almost instantly.
For the time being, at least.
Lesson learned (again): I bottle up but offloading it on a third person (who is not a friend or family member so just an emotionally non-involved person) works.
Note: While I think it’s very important to talk about mental health issues with your friends and family too, I don’t think it’s fair to dump the entire Mothership of feelings and thoughts on them. Use a therapist or another third person who is not very closely related to you for that.
So I have been feeling lighter and calmer and I’ve been sleeping well. However, I have not made the second appointment with Bob. Every time I reach for my phone to do so, I get an anxious knot in my stomach and I stop.
After a few days of that I realised that my stomach was yet again trying to tell me something – that gut instinct had kicked in. Bob, as you may remember from that post, was a bit of a douche and despite being useful in letting me offload some stuff, some of his comments and his demeanor made me feel a) judged b) pitied and c) ridiculed.
I’m old enough to know that one should trust one’s gut. Not the brain, not the heart, (and definitely not any other body part).
The brain and the heart are good for a lot of things (including keeping us alive) but the gut is where the CORE of us is at. Literally.
Gut feeling is often referred to as ‘intuition’ or even ‘clairvoyance’. That means if you get a bad feeling in your gut about something, listen to that feeling and adjust/amend what you’re doing.
I do NOT get a good gut feeling when I think about calling up Bob so I won’t. There are plenty of CBT practitioners in London. I will talk to my lovely Kiwi GP and get a referral to somebody else.