|The chandeliers, Rob Kelly and I!|
We were entertained by one of the Scottish therapists who played the bag pipes. Other talented members of the Association took to the stage and played all evening. I had a great time! James even had me doing figure of 8 moves!
|James 'just back from Florida' and me|
I froze. Tears pricked the back of my eyes and I began to feel the rising tide of grief about to overwhelm me. In a flash I realised I had a choice. Did I let this overtake me and spend the rest of the evening in my little room weeping OR did I turn back up the stairs, grab Patrick who I had sat next to at dinner by the hand and dance? I chose the latter and four hours later was still up and being sociable!
In the bar Rob and James plus others played the keyboard and singing went on into the early hours. Wonderful.
I am very grateful to Gary who suggested to Rob that I spoke at the conference. I had so many warm hugs from delegates! I was thrilled that it seems I have inspired some of them to share their own stories; they want to 'share' me with others who may benefit from an uplifting approach; struck a chord with others who had been bereaved; and especially those affected by postnatal depression in some way. I felt my visit was not in vain.
|Me, Gary and Sue|
See more photos here.
Next morning I joined the conference again and first one was Gary with some great 'warm-up' activities. Dr. Mark Pummell then described his psychoanalytical approach to working with couples. Fascinating!
Rob spoke more on 'Changing Limiting Beliefs' . The more time I spent with these lovely people the more I was thinking of people who could benefit from their interventions, especially around postnatal depression. I was also so pleased to have my personal ways of coping with Clive's death 'validated' as clinically proven techniques, e.g. changing my thinking and making positive choices and thoughts instead of negative.
It was actually some sessions of hypnotherapy that resulted in my book 'Eyes without Sparkle' being written. I had got so far with it and then just left it to gather dust. In the late 1990's I development digestive problems and was in and out of hospital. Finally I was sent to Mike Mahoney for a hypnotherapy approach to pain relief. He actually listened to me, gave me some relaxation tapes bespoke for me and gently made me realise that I could take control. My diet was changed to be wheat free and the book got written!
I was reluctant to leave but I know I have to pace myself for a busy week. I called enroute home for a quick catch-up with friends. I was a bit concerned that after being so 'high' I could crash on my return. Luckily some other friends popped round and I was able to share my excitement with them but also had someone to hold my hand when the thought crossed my mind that was it bad for me to actually feel so uplifted so close to Clive's death? Did it mean I didn't love him as much? Does it mean I don't care anymore?
I cannot write what my lovely friend Molly Harvey commented on those thoughts this morning!
Having spent the weekend with a group of the warmest, friendliest therapists I know I have to change my thinking to acknowledge that those thoughts are normal but also a sign that I am making progress along my journey of bereavement.
I just hope that wherever Clive is he would be proud of me - I admit to being so of myself.