We are working on a mosaic in group OT. Each of us works on a part, and when the parts are put together, you see a wind rose. It is a lengthy procedure that requieres a lot of patience. The upper picture is taken before, the lower picture after the last session. It is very obvious I will not be finished soon.
After a few sessions I lost the interest and just wanted to stop working on it. Now I found out why: I am not very patient with myself, even though I am very patient where other people are concerned. I expect from myself that I get everything done NOW. I don’t care about the circumstances (for instance, I don’t know beforehand how the tiles will break – I just have to look for the right space for every piece).
It’s always amazing how OT mirrors life.
My aim for the next sessions will be to be kinder to myself and just enjoy this tricky puzzle game. Maybe I even can bring this attitude into my everyday life.
Friday I started to make appointments. I was afraid this would make my agenda very full. But on one hand, my GP, pain doctor and therapist are on holiday. On the other hand, one group at Occupational Therapy was cancelled, and there are no single OT sessions availible until November. So I will still have a little more time on my hands for now.
I am enjoying these wonderful sunny fall days. The good weather makes it easy for me to use my new all-purpose weapon walking. To keep moving helps me fight depression, anxiety and back pain. But right now my main concern is getting fit again. One year almost spent lying around didn’t help.
I noticed that I am a lot more active than before my hospital stay. Getting up in the morning is quite easy, and I manage to stick to my goals. If that means I have to take a break, so be it. And my goals are realistic.
So I had a good start. Now I have to keep it up to get really used to my new routines. I hope I have enough self discipline for that.
Tomorrow I will see my podologist and go to an OT group that practices relaxation techniques. This should not stress me out, and I should be able to squeeze in an hour of doing chores. And that will be all.
Today I drew this picture in creative therapy, in which I am standing at a wall. With wide spread arms I try to hold the wall in place. I am afraid to let go, because the wall will crush me if it breaks down.
The wall, that are the many small and big things life put in my way.
Therapist: How did you get there? Did somebody tell you to do so, or did you go there because you wanted to?
Me: Life put me there! I didn’t go there because I wanted to.
Therapist: *smirks* That’s good to hear!
Nontheless turning around and leaving the wall is difficult. If it’s not my task to hold the wall in place, what else should I be doing?
Surprisingly everything goes smoothly. The new hospital called today, I will be admitted next Thursday (16.8.).
I and everybody around me think this is a good thing.
Now I have a week to bring everything in order and pack my things. That’s plenty of time, and unfortunately I am a seasoned things-needed-for-a-hospital-stay packer.
This week I have cancelled all my occupational therapy sessions, I needed the quiet. I will do the same next week, because there are things to do.
In Today’s OT session, I started to draw a lynx with window colors.
While talking in DBT, my therapist once asked me which totem animal I would choose. Without thinking, I thought of a lynx.
The lynx as a totem animal is said to help with discovering hidden things and finding the truth.
If this is true, I indeed need a lynx to guide me 🙂.
After ten sessions, I finally finished my silk pillowcase. In the middle are full circles, in the corners quarter circles. On one side, I worked with red colors, on the other side with green hues. The quarter circles are painted in the colors of the big circles on the other side.
I didn’t like silk painting very much. Even though I used liner between the color, the colors often mixed. I hate this, but I was told this often happens with silk painting.
The demon perfectionism had a field day. He thinks, even a child a kindergarten could have done this better.
Today I started my next project, a wooden filing tray. We will see how this turns out.
Today we started OT with a round of progressive muscle relaxation. After that, we had coffee and sweets and discussed what we will do next.
We didn’t do anything creative today, but nobody wanted to leave. We are a wonderful group, we just connect to each other.
It looks like the relaxation group can start in three or four weeks, so everything goes according to plan.
Aside from the demon self-hatred, the demon called perfectionism bothers me the most.
An example is the picture above, I finished it today in OT-group. Most of the group members like it, I only see many little flaws and hate it.
The picture will go to another participant of the group, I wouldn’t have taken it home, I would have thrown it away immedeately.
I have been working on my perfectionism issues for quite a long time, but this demon is really hard to beat.
Well, I may not be the greatest silk painting artist, but I am fascinated by circles. We will see how it looks when it is finished. It is a pillow, 40×40 cm.
What I noticed recently: In our OT group are three people that suffered from cancer at a relatively young age. We are talking about brain tumor, cancer of the small intestine and my melanoma.
It is understandable that suffering from cancer is something difficult to cope with. But we all agree on the fact that there is very little support for middle-aged cancer survivors. Depression or anxiety that may follow cancer can be treated, of course. But this is where it stops.
Things may get very difficult where work is concerned. The employment center scratches its head and offers Job Application Training. I had to go through this myself and now what I am talking about. Those who can’t go on with their work like before, but are too “fit” to file for disability, are affected worst.
But this is just more point in which I want our society to be more compassionate and understanding. Everyone can become an cancer patient one day.
This is what I am currently working on in our group OT-sessions. The outlines of the flowers where already printed on the canvas, but it is a lot of fine work and takes a lot of concentration. It also takes longer than I thought.
My single OT sessions will come to an end in the next weeks. So it’s a good thing that our therapist had some training last week, and wants to start relaxation group therapy. Her goal is to provide her clients with exercises they can use in their everyday life.
That’s exactly my problem. During my therapies I was taught lots of good exercises, but most of them couldn’t be done in public in stressful situations. So this could really help me. We will see if enough clients want to come, so a group can be formed.
Anyway, it is a good thing when something new comes my way.