Nervous Breakthrough: Derived from the oft referred to Nervous Breakdown, a Nervous Breakthrough occurs when, instead of viewing the symptoms of the aforementioned as pathological, one views them as important signs of imminent breakthrough.
I once had a roommate who had spent about ten years practicing Zazen (a form of Buddhist meditation) who described the day she completed a koan after many years of meditation.
She reported that she lost her physical ability to do some of the most simple everyday things, like tie her shoes, and walk down the stairs…. She called her Teacher to talk about what was wrong.
Instead of offering her empathy, compassion or a teaching, he offered her congratulations.
She had resolved the koan!
So, of course, or as usual I got to thinking (have I mentioned how often I have been accused of thinking too much???) How interesting that her experience of breaking through her koan was accompanied by things that might otherwise be considered signs or symptoms of something gone awry.
That got me thinking more (go figure)… Along with reading parts of Peter Breggin’s Toxic Psychiatry, and listening to David Whyte’s amazing Poetry of Self Compassion, I began considering how I too might use moments of disequilibrium and even downright breakdown as signs of a possible breakthrough in consciousness……
as gift rather than a curse.
I started allowing the physical and emotional symptoms to emerge as I witnessed them to see what happened while holding this pearl of wisdom in my back-pocket:There is a Palace that opens only to Tears ~ The Zohar
That is also around the time I discovered the sublimity of The Weeping and so I started exploring in great earnest these Nervous Breakthroughs….and the amazing vistas that were reachable if I really let myself surrender to the difficult and taboo, the grief filled and the frozen.
And that is the story of the Nervous Breakthrough.
Now, I did find that some griefs are so vast that it really helped to have someone else help me navigate the terrain and even then I always held certain Weeping doors closed. I hadn’t found a safe way to approach them.
until . . .
I discovered Somatic Experiencing and found the amazing innovative revolutionary tools I needed to open any door safely, not all at once, or alone, but really ANY door, any frozen, spinning, tripping, stuck, buried thing I was avoiding.
Now, there is no door that need remain locked.
So, Nervous Breakthroughs?
bring em on…
Its never to late, or too early for accessing the sublime stories locked up within….. and all our griefs, stuck places, and emotional spin-outs are truly gifts in disguise. If you have a door you have kept closed for so long, just waiting until there was a real live honest to goodness way to resolve it, take heart, it can be opened safely, respectfully and magically.