Sessions with Dorien

The Intro & My Guide

Felt inspired today and powerful in my own space. My guide was someone who feels like a role model in many ways and I’m impressed by; down to earth, easy to open up to, clearly shows no signs of judgment, and maintains eye contact in a positively engaging and reassuring way, longer than anyone I can remember meeting. It exudes confidence and shows genuine character, letting you know there’s a lot of person up there in her mind. Being aware of this small detail in our interaction reminded me of a piece of myself as someone who prided himself on doing the same. It was always natural for me and something I was consciously proud of, exerting the same confidence through maintaining eye contact when conversing with people in order to show them you are in fact, truly engaged in the discussion and listening to what they have to say. Making them feel safe, heard, respected. How often we purposefully look away we’ve been trained as what is socially accepted so as not to make others uncomfortable. Realizing now, it was months that I had been avoiding looking in a mirror even & reflecting on why that was and what the hell happened. It proves every connection we establish with people helps us get back on our feet, bringing us closer to ourselves. Its the essence of one reason why if you’ve gone through trauma, lost yourself in that process, put yourself out there – be bold. You’ll pick up on the smallest of things that remind you of who you really are, the things you take pride in yourself for and continue to heal.

Her life seems quite fascinating, living amongst friends in a piece of land they bought in the southeast of Holland out in the countryside. A place where people are fully made safe to self explore and just be themselves out in the nature. I respect her for doing what makes her happy, and notice she couldn’t be farther from the stereotype of someone who lives that lifestyle; she has her life together and seems very content. In an episode of one of my favorite series Mad Men, set in the 1960’s, one of the characters is a woman of 22 years of age whom on the outside has the seemingly picturesque life being married and already having children. In the episode the character winds up abandoning her family and living in a commune of people out in nature, and you couldn’t help but feel for her. She lived the life everyone expected for her, what she was told and believed would be fulfilling – yet in the end yearned for what we all need, which is that time to go out in the world and just explore & be ourselves, free of any restrictions or obligations. Truly being on your own schedule and choosing to do what makes you feel good.

Sitting down writing this is also a reminder why its so important to write and reflect, taking time for yourself. Re-enforcing bits and pieces of yourself you’ve lost and motivating you to want to be that person again.

Dorien asked me if I’m on the path, and I felt confident in saying yes without hesitating. Previously I would not have understood what it meant when someone asked that question, and probably would have judged it as cliché. Feels good and makes me half smile to mutually understand what it is she’s asking, and simultaneously her understanding my response.

The Session & self-reflection

The space itself is in the city center, with good energy and in the Jordaan neighborhood. We drink tea and open up to one another for a bit to connect before I lay down on a mattress on the floor. She guides me into my breath, from beginning to end telling me where to focus my attention. She is touching pressure points throughout my body and every time she does, the sensation feels so good your body vibrates throughout. Like a massage for your mind and soul. Crazy how applying pressure in the wrists, can trigger a complete release of the tension in your neck for example. Finding myself eager to get to learn these skills so I can do the same for others.

My mind enters a meditative state, present and clear. Simply feeling and processing what comes up. The heart feels open, your mind connects with it, and you begin to understand you’re listening to what it is that our inner self wants to say, right from the core of it all. In that space, confidence grows to trust in yourself. Understanding the path you want to follow in order to make yourself happy, radiating as your best self.

The first realization is I know my work is not motivating me in life. Some of the people I work with feel like my family which is a big reason it feels safe to stay. I had always been overall positive towards it, gives me a lot of freedom and I viewed it like playing a strategy game, which I don’t like to lose at and therefore usually did quite well. My desire to put effort in is dwindling right now and if you’re effort level is low you’ll never be happy with what you do. I’ve an immense sense of loyalty towards my boss, so full transparency in where I’m at will be the move. I need to take a few months and give my full attention to study breathwork, volunteer and just be free. I also need to take care of my permanent residency in the Netherlands so if I leave my job or told I need to resign, I won’t lose the ability to call Amsterdam my home. Boom, now I have a plan.

I drift into processing things from my past relationship; making sense of the complexity in my heart and where the tightness in my throat & chest comes from. Taking a step back from something makes you see things clear and the realities of what happened and why. What comes up makes me feel angry at times, sad at others, then remorseful, but no matter what – in my heart I can’t help seeing the good in people which means love always wins out. Compassion is not weakness. The conflict between my head & heart over the memory is more quiet now, but still there.

At the end of our session, in my deepest state of calm I’m completely spaced out and see a sun coming through clouds, beaming down. Everywhere I move it follows me as if standing on a beach with a spotlight on me. I say out loud to Dorien life’s pretty cool. She smiles and agrees.

Gratitude runs through me as I open my eyes specifically thinking about the few people who really stood by me so much over the past months. Every time my heart was crushed, it took a bit more out of me. No matter how many times I pondered the same questions, struggled with the same anxieties and unrest, felt lost – they were always there to support me and listen. Feelings of shame sink in for how much I have taken, without being able to give the same in return. I wish there was something I could give them instantly to make them feel reciprocally loved.

Doing breathwork in Amsterdam made it feel more like home than it has felt in sometime. Having felt safe in a space given to me for the last 90 minutes and explore was healing. I leave with a smile and biking home confident in wanting to take time off work to explore breathwork, volunteer somewhere, find a community of like minded people in the great unknown.

Much love and gratitude, staying humble

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