Big Sigh Of Relief
One thing that has been causing me anxiety about the flashback incident is that I didn’t tell my Yoga Instructor about it after it happened. Whether or not I had the courage to say it right then is not necessarily important…but it did feel important that I let her know about it. But I dragged my feet about it. I was worried that she would decide that I was too difficult to work with and so she would reject me. (And I really need to figure out why trauma=fear of abandonment.) I really like her and working with her and I didn’t want to do anything to put a strain on that relationship.
So, like I said, I dragged me feet about letting her know…But yesterday afternoon, I sent her an email and hoped that it was the right thing to do. Here’s an excerpt:
I wanted to let you know about something that happened last time in yoga. I have been kind of reluctant to write to you about it, but I think it is important that I let you know.
Part of my PTSD is that I have had flashbacks. I have not had one in a really long time (years), but on Tuesday, when in Savasana, I had a flashback. I didn’t say anything about at the time, as I was hoping it would not be a big deal (plus I didn’t know exactly what to say). After it happened, I opened my eyes and stared at the ceiling and ceiling fans and oriented myself back into the room and to the present. And I thought I had pulled myself together…but on Wednesday, I kind of fell apart which led to the rest of the week being kind of a wreck. I did get the support I needed, but it was long few days.
I am guessing it was the position of Savasana that threw me into a flashback. I never used to be able to lay on my back at all, but thought I had resolved that a few years ago. And I have been comfortable on my back in Savasana for every single yoga session until last Tuesday, and even Tuesday I was fine when I started. Likely, work in therapy stirred up issues that led me to be more susceptible to having a flashback. Plus, I didn’t catch the first signal, which was that I started to feel slightly queasy.
I continued on say I felt a bit nervous about doing that pose again and asked for any thoughts she had about it. And then…I waited
When I woke up this morning, I had the most reassuring email response from her. I was sooo relieved! And her obvious caring kind of makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside. Here’s an excerpt from her email:
I am so glad you wrote to tell me what happened in yoga. I appreciate your checking in. I’m sorry to hear you experienced a flashback and that it took a couple days to recover. I’m glad to hear that you knew to open your eyes and focus on seeing things in the present moment/place.
Please know that I am a safe person to keep checking in with, that you can let me know (if you want to) in the moment if this happens again, and that I am comfortable with you expressing a whole range of emotions in class. I am here for you.
And she followed that with thoughts on the yoga pose and saying that we can check in more about this on Wednesday (my next session).
So…clearly, she is not rejecting me. As a matter of fact, it almost seems like she is embracing me! She always takes me where I am at without judging me or expecting me to be someone I am not. I feel so lucky to have found her!