life timeline

I am very excited about working with my new therapist.  She is really helping me to put my current situation into perspective and to see the positive things that are coming of it rather than dwelling on how hard it can be at times.  

I believe that I am in the middle of learning some big life lesson and although I don’t have a complete handle on exactly what is going on I feel that it has something to do with learning to set boundaries and feel ok about stating what I need.  When we discuss things going on in my life right now, there are some common threads (things that I keep saying over and over), including that I don’t feel that I am being heard as well as issues around boundary setting.

To get at the root of where these feelings are coming from, where in my past they originated, and how best to move past my issues and move forward in my life on a more directed and purposeful path, we are going to use a variety of techniques beyond just hashing it out over and over again.  

I am having some pretty exaggerated emotional responses to the pretty straight forward issues I’m dealing with right now, so I think that there has to be something more going on here.  Something from my past rearing its head or a brick wall that I have to fight through in order to learn a life lesson that will enable me to find that path to a fulfilling, balanced life that I so eagerly seek and find so elusive.

One of the therapy techniques we are using requires I come up with a simple memory from each year of my life. The memory should be neutral to positive and not induce any serious emotion of any sort, just a pleasant memory.  

I can’t say that I totally understand how this is all going to work yet, but it sure was interesting making this list.  Some years were definitely easier than others.  There were some pretty dark areas of my life that I struggled to find a positive memory for.  Not that great memories don’t come out of some of the darkest times, but finding something that wasn’t tied to someone or something that was going to dredge up the negative things associated with that time was sometimes rather tricky.

The numbers correspond with my age at the time and I have added the years in brackets once I hit my 20s because it is easier to reference it that way.  My therapist said that when we hit our mid twenties we start identifying more with what year it is and less with how old we are.  Makes sense, i guess, who wants to dwell on how old they are past 25, right?

This is what I came up with.  

4  –  Sitting on the hearth in front of the fireplace Christmas morning with my Grandpa in our Christmas jammies.

5 – Eating pomegranates on the playground

6 – Decorating my bike for the fourth of July parade

7 – Earthquake evacuation drills (we lived in northern California at the time)

8 – Meeting Lizzie on the first day of school

9 – Having pizza with my math teacher

10 – Building the pasture fence with my dad

11 – Braiding the horses manes with the other riders in my barn before horse shows

12 – My first kiss

13 – Going to Disneyland with my choir

14 – 9th grade graduation

15 – Riding in the back of Kris’s brat

16 – Braiding our hair at Tegan’s house

17 – Driving out to the valley in Joanne’s convertible listening to Violator

18  – The green shag carpet in my first apartment

19  – Watching 90210 at Lauri and Tiff’s

20  – Learning to Rock Climb in my systems class.

21  – Climbing a tree with Karli my first trip to Bellingham

22  – Drawing in art class

23 – Coming home from School everyday to Karli, Jason and Lucus on the couch

24  – Meeting Sarah

25  – Smoking Cigarettes in the garden behind CUH with Sarah

26 (99/00) – Propagating plants in the greenhouse.  Oh, how I loved the greenhouse

27 (00/01)- Getting married

28 (01/02) – Buying our house

29 (02/03) – Taking my first business trip –  to Las Vegas

30 (03/04) – Going to the cabin with Matt and Teresa

31 (04/05) – Sitting in the quad at the UW

32 (05/06) – Little Gym

33 (06/07) – Finding out I was pregnant, again

34 (07/08) – Our road trip to California

35 (present) – Karli and I building the deck

 

This was actually a really interesting and fun way to look back over my life.  Remembering the past and sifting through all the emotionally charged memories in our lives to find those simple moments when all was right in the world is very therapeutic.  I encourage you all to give it a try.