At first, it was uncomfortable. Just laying down on the table induced panicky feelings. I was frozen but not from the temperature, I held every muscle tight. My experience with touch was limited to family members, old lovers, my gentle and kind ex husband, doctors, and the rapist. I had no experiences that would allow me to predict what was really going to be done to me, so I did what I always have done. I held my breath and froze. I just laid there. Face down on the massage table.
When the therapist came into the room, I was already on hyper alert. My mind was screaming. I didn’t flinch as she placed her hands on my back. But years of training had made me hold the flinch back. She asked me to take in a deep breath, I tried to comply. She asked me again but in softer voice, “can you breath in and let it out like a sigh?”.
My mind focused on the thought that I could get up if I wanted but, I wanted to try this,cause I was afraid of it. An overriding behavior, during my different experiments in healing from CSA was to forcing myself to endure something until I was no longer afraid. I would keep at it until I did decided I was no longer afraid, then I would have overcome a fear. I would remind myself, I have been through worse. I reminded myself I could get up off the table at anytime. I could walk out, I am not the little girl who couldn’t protect herself.