When it’s time to say goodbye!
As somebody who has invested my life in cultivating and working through long term relationships, I struggle with the concept of endings. How do we know when a relationship has come to an end and that we are not jumping ship too quickly or rushing to escape a current difficulty only to encounter it again in our next relationship? How endings can ever feel good, when the ultimate one, death is always out of our hands and can bring about a lifetime of grief?
I am feeling particularly sad today to have made the decision that this will be my last weekly blog, at least for a while. I started writing the blogs in December 2020, nearly two years ago. Keeping this weekly writing forum has given me the opportunity to reflect on life and practice during a time that our inner world and the collective disturbance of the pandemic were more interconnected than ever before. During these last two years, it has become apparent to all of us that the world is in a dark place, but also that there is no vulnerability and turbulence out there that cannot easily become our own. We are all vessels of complex and fluid psychic material floating in a collective pool. My hope in writing the blogs was that they would help me clarify the emergent themes in my weekly psychotherapy practice and ordinary life and that following the above principle of fluid inner and outer connection, the blogs would resonate and inspire thinking and reflection in others.
I am still finding that writing the blogs is thought provoking and rich in valid insights for me. Therefore, my relationship with the practice of publishing my weekly blog is still alive to an extent, which is why I am feeling sad to have to bring it to an end. I would not like to promise I will resume the blog at a later date as an ending is an ending is an ending, as any psychoanalytic practitioner will tell you! Promising to resume them, when I am not sure it will feel right to do so, would only be a way of avoiding the sadness of an ending. And one of the most valid insights I have had in all my years of practising is that sadness, when appropriate can be both healing and an avenue to creativity. I am honestly hoping though that the blogs may transform into some other form of writing, which is why I will keep my mailing list in the form of the newsletter open.
So, why am I stopping the weekly blogs? Of course, I could say there are external pressing factors for which I have to stop. There are always valid external reasons which inform our decisions, but I have come to see such occurrences as guiding signs, which help me navigate life like driving on a motorway in the dark before arriving at a crossroads with direction signals. In my case, the most obvious external factor is that I now have an imminent deadline for submitting an edited book, which requires me to spend several hours per week writing and editing on top of my practice. When the book gets published, hopefully sometime next year, I will be delighted to let you all know as well as to of course keep you updated about any other writing adventures.
The main reason I am stopping the blogs though is because of my gut feeling which tells me that they have served their purpose, at least in their present form. The telltale signs are many including how busy I have been and how busy the world around me has become. After the prolonged period of necessary inner reflection brought about by the pandemic, there is a quest to go out there and explore and experience more directly. Reflection is always, in my view, a valid and necessary process. Many disasters in the world could have been avoided, if there was space and time for reflection. Nevertheless, it is also important to sometimes go with the flow. The impetus right now seems to be to allow our senses again to engage directly with the world. Incidentally, the book I am editing is on the engagement of the senses in the therapy space and encounter. So, perhaps, like many of us, I need to pause here, so that I can take in the changes before creating a reflective forum again one way or another. But for now, it is time to say goodbye..!
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