Client Case: Healing the Masculine
Mark came to see me to resolve a strong right side torsion in his spine and terrible migraines that he had experienced most of his life. He had almost died in childhood from whooping cough and struggled to fit in at college. He liked himself but didn't love his body, wishing it was more muscular, more 'alpha male.' He told stories and made himself laugh (and me too) and was spiritually open and very curious.
What he didn't have however, were the answers for why he never felt like he could fully be himself. Why he never felt at ease within. Why his physical body was giving him the messages it was. Why he had a beautiful and supportive childhood but still felt somewhat unloved. Was he making it all up in his head? Was he just being ungrateful?
Our work started on a physical level, to relax the nervous system, the gut and put the liver to rest. There was a strong charge in his body like a can of coke that has been shaken and taken out of a freezer and is about to burst open. I remember he breathed heavily trying to manage the sensational overwhelm and self soothe. Gradually he learnt to let his body breathe naturally and trust the hands that were holding him. As he relaxed into his breathing he became more comfortable on the treatment table.
Week after week for several months we slowly unboxed childhood imprints of pre verbal grief and confusion, past life mysteries where he had been bound and tied against his will, family secrets that hadn't been fully acknowledged or spoken of and the realities of his ancestral lines, holocaust survivors. Survivors.
His body was holding so much. At times in his life he would feel down and disconnected and not know why because his sensations needed integration; mind, heart and body needed to be brought back into the same space. No amount of talking therapy can do this, trauma is held in the tissues of the body. Deep in the cells. He always felt his wounds were so deep he never believe they could be healed.
Gradually through body and energy work he learnt how to safely release tension, charge and pain so it didn't store up and overwhelm or lead to a shut down inside. His chest, previously hard and protective had softened and allowed a meeting of touch. His heart began to speak as shock, rage and sadness that had accumulated over so many years started to come through it.
A pervading feeling of not fitting in, not being acceptable or good enough was the result of amongst other things, being bullied at college for no reason other than he wasn't willing to bully, and finding the outside world, a confronting challenge, that he wasn't prepared for in his innocence and emotional sensitivity.
He was the child that would watched the washing machine going round as he drowned out the world around him. He was the child that felt everything that wasn't being said in his household, between his parents. He was the child that learnt to hold the pain that his parents were not able to express and heal themselves. He was the child, like many now in this time of awakening, called to heal their family lines.
The more his body shared memories , bit by bit it started to emerge that it was hard to face the world and stay open, so his spine was twisting and turning away to protect his entire being.
A big part of his healing was in allowing him to face and express his rage and sadness fully and still be respected. He gradually became more comfortable with contacting these emotions. His sobs and grunts were raw and sometime the energies moving through him were so strong I could see why he had been containing them.
One day he spoke about the bullies and how they made him feel like he didn't fit in, like he was the outsider. He talked about wanting to kill one of them. 'Just one?' I asked. 'Maybe this person too' he replied, referencing another college bully. 'Make a list' I suggested. It wasn't long before he was drawing up a hit list of who needed to be murdered. With each person he was to kill, the part of him that needed to murder, also dies. Facing it. Seeing it through, in a space that is safe. This was the permission he needed.
A gentle man with a murderous rage. A perfect polarity. It's so common. Let's not pretend it's not there. Most men do not even come for therapy and when they do, they don't go anywhere near their boiling rage. It's too dangerous, too primal, it risks too much rejection.
As he let it come pouring out, it was to be honest, shatteringly beautiful. He screamed and screamed with his face in a pillow.
It was raw. Explosive. Primal. Unfiltered.
When he had finished, there was a sense of calm. His body softened and his heart opened to himself. I invited him to notice the respect that was still there for him. He could feel it. It settled him deeper into himself.
In our final session we recapped our journey. He cried and talked about how the work had changed his life. He was so much more willing to just be himself now. He knew he was different from other men but he didn't care. He just wanted to be true to himself.
How would the world respond to a highly sensitive, feeling and creative man, who cared deeply for the life and wellbeing of others, who would spontaneously get into upbeat conversation with strangers on the tube and manage to connect with homeless people on the street just like they were brothers, and who nurtured tomatoes on his window sill before putting them deep into the soil of his garden.
How will the world respond, to a new model of masculinity, that is emotionally open and available, willing to be vulnerable, unassuming and not interested in power or control.
How would the world respond to a man who was loving himself more each day, and accepting his place in the world as he uncovers his gifts and self worth. No longer turning away, but facing it all, open to what comes.
I can only imagine, the world will bow down to make space for the rise of the divine masculine.
In deep gratitude, reverence and awe of my client and his healing journey