Friday, April 16, 2010

Holy Breathwork Batman!

...just wow.

If you ever have a chance to experience breathwork (and since most all of you know me personally you will,lol) do so! I had heard for weeks vague references to breathwork and the powerful effects it could cause, but all those anecdotes pale in comparison to actually experiencing it for yourself.

Matthew started out today by explaining how breathwork works and how I was supposed to breath, the cadence, posture, etc. He explained that we would be working in 4-5 10 minute cycles of breathing and checking in between segments to see what I was feeling or experiencing. I may not have an emotional reaction immediately, that most people don't start to have a reaction until about 3 cycles in and some longer than that, it just depends on the person and how deep their emotions are buried.

So I laid flat in the recliner, he put out the lights (except for the light from his computer screen) and I began to breathe.

Starting out my mouth seemed to dry up quickly and I would occasionally lapse out of breathing, in which case Matthew would tap on his knee and signal me to continue breathing. I made it through probably 2 full cycles before I started to have a reaction, though I did report the tingling in my arms and legs, alternating heat and cold in my chest, etc.

Finally I started to have a reaction. It hard to determine exactly how it went down in hindsight, but I'll try and assemble it to the best of my abilities.

At some point I began to have 'impressions' as I call them and the first few times I pushed them aside thinking my thoughts were wandering. I quickly realized though that my impressions were of my bedroom as a child and I quickly realized that this must be the memory breaking through so I brought it back and began to look in. The details were, while not startling, pretty vivid. I couldn't remember every detail of the room, but in my defense it was dark so I couldn't exactly see everything, though I did have a very strong grasp of the layout of the room.

As I started to sink into the scene I began to cry, and immediately looked in expected to find sadness, being as the emotion had come up before. However I started to get the feeling, very quickly actually that this wasn't sadness, it was something else.


Very soon I wasn't looking down on the scene so much as I was IN the scene, I was having a revivication (re living a memory). I was curled up in my water bed, my arms wrapped tight around my knees, though I can't tell if I was sitting up or laying on my side. I began to hear footsteps coming toward my room and I saw the shadows of two feet stretch out from under the door.

At this point my revivication became an abreaction, I started to feel the emotions of the memory incredibly intensely, I was sobbing, thrashing my head and finally reaching up to cover my face in my hands. My simple fear morphed into abject terror, a level of panic I'm not sure I can recall ever feeling before. Thoughts were racing through my head on my terror driven adrenaline high, there was a man standing outside my door, a man I knew but I still could not name and I kept repeating "He mustn't know, He mustn't know." Slowly the shadows receded and the man walked past my door and into the kitchen beyond and I broke down sobbing in relief.

At this point my adult self was able to disengage from the abreaction and look at the scene objectively again. I was still crying, I was still feeling it, but a part of my mind could disengage and begin the investigating process. I imagined my adult self all around the child me (who I came to age at 5 yr old) and started the questioning, "Who was that? Who? Who?" With every breath I imagined like I was drawing water from a well, every outtake thinking "Who? Who?" and imaging that I was pulling out the information.

After a couple of minutes I was not able to glean who the man was, though I reinforced the information I already stated, and instead switched to "Why? Why must he not know?" (note I may have asked what he must not know first but this got no answer either way). After a few times asking why he must not know I got the answer, "Because he will act" he would act upon this knowledge. As I stated before I got no direct response to 'what' however there were other mitigating circumstances and feelings that occurred that implied an answer, however I'm not comfortable discussing them online. Maybe after further treatment, but not now.

After several minutes of questioning it became apparent that I could get no new information and, since I knew my time would be up soon anyway, I began to disengage and did what felt right, I comforted the little girl. I told her it was okay, that the danger is long since passed and that there's nothing to fear now. You can calm down and relax, rest. My breathing evened and the tears stopped and I was able to come out of the exercise and explain to Matthew what had happened (I hadn't spoken during the experience). He and I discussed it, he said it was a perfect session by the way, lol, and he thought it couldn't have gone better. We made plans to try regression therapy next week and he assured me that even though it seemed I'd done a good job of wrapping up the memory so it wouldn't bother me in the mean time, that I was welcome to pull him aside at any time this weekend if I was facing any difficulties.

As I talked with him afterward I told him I sat there with this incredible sense of ecstasy. I felt amazing, even having seen what I had seen, having faced the possible issues I would face, I felt fantastic.

Then I tried to get up out of the chair.
And I fell over.
I was drunk on Oxygen, get that.

I have never been so dizzy and had so much vertigo. Though at the time I was still in an intensely blissful state so it was a minor hindrance (trying not to walk into walls) and I remember laughing openly in the parking lot as I leaned against my car and tried to get the world to stop swimming. Finally my balance evened out and I went out for lunch, still in a smashing good mood.

However I hadn't been out of the office 30 minutes before I started to deflate like a balloon. The euphoric feeling left and I was left completely drained of energy, my lunch sitting in my stomach like a rock. I went home and tried to nap for an hour and a half but to little avail (it's hard to sleep when you've got fries sitting on your gut.) So I got up and headed to class early and settled in sluggishly.

Thankfully I was the first to arrive and I had a chance to ask Matthew about the situation and he assured me that it was normal and that I would be right again after a good nights sleep. So reassured that nothing had gone terribly wrong I made it thorough class and even found my strength and sense of balance return somewhat so that I'm not so bad off now as I write this. I as still tired though and I'll probably head right to bed after this.

Thanks to everyone who reads this, you don't have to of course and please know I value you all very dearly as friends. I can't wait to see you all soon.



  1. Im scared -- very scared - I can barely breath as it is. But we all miss you terribly and hope to see you soon

  2. Ooh Lyle I wanna try breathwork on you, lol. Maybe after I learn it in class. J/k only if you want to. ^^ Thank you and I miss you guys too.