A Compassionate Letter to Yourself

The group session prompted us to write a compassionate letter to ourselves. Now after a few weeks I’m looking back and thinking how short and simple it was. Typically when I write notes to my therapist, it’s a barrage of meaningful meaninglessness. Why was I treating myself so succinctly.

Seems like I’m acknowledging my terrible problem with second guessing myself in every decision. I have a “shoulda” “coulda” solution for every problem. Telling myself to be grateful for where I am still feels hollow. Maybe one day I will truly receive this.

The letter feels hopeful but I can tell I feel like I’m in trudge. Sludging through mud or thick snow. Anxiety is a path to nowhere, and the out is often annihilation. No one is going to come save me because there is no saving. I’m just watching across the field, for something or nothing, while being eaten alive.

When there isn’t a lot of hope, then compassionate is just a gesture to show you’re still living.

I’m tired of having been through 2 or 10 years of ups and downs between doing the work of healing versus trying to “get past” traumatic events. In some ways it’s 30 years when I think about my childhood and teenage years. I’m tired of finding some discovery about how my brain works, applying it, then falling into another trap months later for something else.

I want catharsis even after having had so many cathartic moments. Expecting a catharsis is probably the problem.

Dear Eric,

I have compassion for all you have experienced and continue to endure as a result. You are an amazing person who has so many facets to you that are beautiful.  Life has been difficult at times and it is wonderful that you signed up for this workshop – it shows you know you are worthy of the love and support from this community.  (take it from here) 

Be grateful for all you’ve overcome.  Never second guess where you are in life or what you’ve done.  So many things have happened good and bad.  You are living the human experience and that is okay.

You’re tired and groggy from having to manage this chaos.  You may even believe you are a chaotic person or that you deserve some atonement.  These are stories and they help you bring meaning.

Remember you have done so much to bring light to the darkness and working on fixing yourself.

You believe there is a place that is better than now, or a person that is better than now, or you will arrive in the future.   You can arrive now and know each day will be even better.

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