This is hard. Waiting, continuing to live through changes, to be on this healing journey. It is hard to be here with so much unknown, wanting to have answers, to be done with the hard part.

On this day early in March, I think of the daffodils. They have done a lot of the hard work: their bulbs have survived the winter, they have roots, they have pushed through the soil, they are green, they are ready… but not quite ready to fully bloom. This is a hard place to be, there is more work to do.

Sometimes this is what it feels like in the therapy process. I think it’s such a large part of our journey in life and our healing. When we start out, it often feels like nothing is sure, often like a chaos of emotions or needs and loud old negative narratives. And as we start the process of distilling what is there and ordering and making sense, it feels better. Some of the pain is eased. Maybe we start to feel like – ‘I am someone, I make some sense’, or maybe ‘I will make it’. Like the daffodil who has pushed up and stands there only a few inches tall that says ‘I am a daffodil’. But there is no yellow flower yet, some people won’t know what it is there poking out of the earth, and surely it will get covered by snow again (at least in Colorado!).

This is a hard place to be. Part of us knows we have made some progress, we sense our stronger-wiser self. We start to find ourselves and feel a bit better and more aware and start to take new steps. And then the old, not totally resolved emotion can come back full of life, as if we have not done anything in our therapy. As if we are destined to be stuck forever. There is still hurt, there is still so much uncertainty and often we get stuck in our old patterns. That old feeling of- I am not going to be loved or enough or it will not change- starts to take hold again. This hurt, this fear is so valid and fits here, as difficult as it is. We so badly want to get to the ‘it will be alright’ part but it’s not time for that, just as it’s not time for the glory of the blooming yellow daffodil.

This is hard, but it is not the end of the story. These emotions showing up, again, so fresh and real and powerful, just means there is more tending to do. There is more they need to tell us. The pain needs a bit more healing love. We are still green, short daffodils, waiting for more growth, waiting for more sun and moisture to strengthen us.

We need to give some space to what is here. Be in it, breathe with it, notice it and listen to the emotions that are coming up. This is part of the process, because now you are stronger and more able to fully acknowledge what is here, to feel more deeply, to sit and listen more completely…to let them tell you what is important and what they need. Able to give the pain loving compassion. This is you changing- how you respond to your pain, how you care for yourself or ask others to help you- this is you growing.

This is a hard place to be, a necessary stage of healing, growing, evolving. Be gentle and kind to yourself. And may you know it’s not the end of the story.