Where did it start, I wonder, that which lead me here and to this website coming into being…
Perhaps it was when I bought the domain name back in 2008? – Inspired by many years waiting on London Tube platforms, and intended for my fiancé who was piecing himself after a near-fatal road accident had robbed him of abilities and livelihood. And shaken us both; the fleeting moment of life. He didn’t use it and so it sat waiting.
It could have been in 2009, when diagnosed with work-related stress I began to sense, very slowly and hardly noticeable at first, that my approach in life perhaps wasn’t sustainable? – Or post the kidney cancer diagnosis in 2014, when, one month into the joy of marriage, reality stood tall and stark at the front door of my new home, refusing to be ignored?
It began to get accustomed to daylight, ever so shy and tentatively. In the gestalt therapy where I reached for help with existential questions and fear following in the wake of cancer surgery. And more so when starting to lead cancer bereavement groups in 2018, giving back to where I had found support.
Likely, it traces further back. The ‘it’ – to explain the constant search for knowledge to quell the fear of not being ‘enough’, and the cravings. To earlier in life and the lack of a certain quality of contact. Forming the ground for lifelong striving, many accomplishments and, in parallel, insecurity and self-doubt, today in popular reference called ‘imposter syndrome’.
Many labels pointing, as I learned later, to a deep sense of shame, given fertile ground to grow where that particular kind of contact and support does not. The contact, the ‘being-with’ that human beings depend on for health, growth and developing, emotionally, securely and trusting, of others and themselves.
“when I see you seeing me, I know that I am” (Spagnuolo Lobb, 2021)
I have stopped asking why; and when isn’t really important either. What is, is. And amongst it a realisation, at the end of training, that what I had been fortunate to learn in supportive relationships with gestalt therapists – a way of being with and engaging with the world without fear of ‘being seen’ – is too good not to be shared.
This is where it begins.