oldHow a missed trash can led to Formation Tortue, but learning languages can help treating childhood trauma

Why did that paper ball flying over my head make me dive for the floor?

Shortly after I turned 51 years of age, a young coworker launched a simple balled up bit of paper at the trash can in front of me. It missed. What I saw was not a mere bit of paper becoming litter, however. Out of the corner of my eye, something came flying at me from behind. I reacted instinctively: by ducking….

…  updated version here

The final straw arrived when the regional economy took a dive, sending myself and the vast majority of people I knew out of work. Some went to California, and I went overseas for work. In a new country and environment, stress flared up, and so did my panic anxiety. But this time I had to talk to a therapist in a language I was only just beginning to learn. As it turned out, I was finally able to access a good bit of the emotional content, while remaining present and able to stem the tide of anxiety during each session. As we began to unpack more of the childhood memories I’d been avoiding, being forced to express myself in a language I was still learning appeared to keep me emotionally distanced enough to prevent being pulled completely into the pain of the original event. When I came back to the USA, I found in California that having a Mexican therapist allowed us to switch from my native English, which was required to access the full emotion of the memory, into Spanish. So when she needed to lower the intensity level of the session, but keep me in the memory, she would switch into Spanish, distancing me just enough from the experience to process it. Who would have thought that #learning a #language could help in this case? But, it did.

So, what would Astérix do? He’d ask the Druid Panoramix, who would say: Il faut #ArreterdeFumer tout de suite !!

Let’s #EndPoverty , #EndHomelessness ,& #EndMoneyBail starting by improving these four parts of our good #PublicDomainInfrastructure 4: (
1. #libraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare , and
4. good #publictransport )
Read, Write, Ranked Choice Voting and Housing for ALL!!!!, Walk !

#PublicDomainInfrastructure & #‎StopSmoking for COVID-19

April, 12020 HE


13 thoughts on “oldHow a missed trash can led to Formation Tortue, but learning languages can help treating childhood trauma

    1. Thanks for reading. Hmm, I was hoping it would feel less like a share and more like a funny reason to implement health care, but I guess I couldn’t lighten it up that much. Not sure how to handle the tone.

      Liked by 3 people

  1. It’s never going to be funny. Interesting to hear switching from one language to another helps the distancing so one can deal with it. I’ve just been through such a primal event. The cost of getting there was dear indeed. But I got my cat back with a great deal of help and that is half the job done. I think. My home language is Afrikaans … in talking to a therapist I would’ve stuttered so much I wouldn’t have been able to get a word out of my mouth.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. 💕💕💕
    That actually makes a lot of sense. Who would’ve thunk?
    Health care really is so important to be accessible for everyone. When I hear some of the stories it just makes me cry- and I don’t read news or follow people other than those I know. Like asking someone why he has to do x and he tells me he has to ration insulin.
    Sending hugs….
    Love, light and glitter

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you, Eliza. I feel the same way, so now, when the tears come, I think, ok, how can I make things just a little bit better, maybe? First, I eat a bit of dark chocolate while sniffing some lavendar oil, and then I try to think of a way I can write an article, however short, to address some aspect of the issue from a long-term perspective (since so many others are taking on the here-and-now issues). At least I hope I am helping in some small way.
      Thanks for the hugs , etc!!! 🙂
      Stay safe,

      Liked by 4 people

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