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Shifting in the Mirror

Old 10-12-2012, 06:41 AM
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Shifting in the Mirror

Here's how I understand shifting:
- Think about drinking and notice how the beast likes that idea, but how uncomfortable it makes me feel.
- Think about not drinking and notice what a relief it is to me, but how uncomfortable the beast is.

I haven't been able to do that. I tried. I focussed, tried to put myself in the moment of each of these thoughts, but still felt only one "me."

It's similar to the problem I had with those optical illusion pictures that were big a decade or so back. Try as I might, I could never see the hidden image.

I thought maybe it was astigmatism.

But I also have always been miserable at those theoretical ethics questions. I know what I think, but I don't know what I would actually do if I had to decide who got to stay in the bomb shelter and who had to leave. I can't "feel" it if it's not actually happening. I'm good at empathy, not so good at simulated empathy.

I have a similar challenge with my image of my physical self. In order to see how I really look, sometimes I have to see myself in a photo. Or look at a reflection of a reflection of myself.

That sounds weird, huh?
I guess it is.
But I am who I am and I don't intend to let that stop me.

Which brings me to the tale I wanted to tell...

The other night, the beast came to call. It saw an opportunity and had AV suggest that I could combine running errands with a stop into a liquor store that was in the very same little strip mall where I was picking up dinner. After all, I was going to be off the next few days and would be stuck at home, so what was the harm? And anyhow, I could start stopping again next week. I really did not want to drink but It did, and I was feeling less confident than I ought.

On the spur of the moment, I went to the bathroom, faced myself in the mirror and raised my hands to look at their reflection.

I challenged my beast to move my fingers. Nothing.

After a few moments, I looked into my eyes... only they weren't.
I was staring directly at the beast.
Damn.

It's an ugly mo fo, I'm telling ya.
Cold.
Uncaring.
Rigid.

I needed to literally change the position of my hands to dismiss the beast and see myself again.

*nod*

Drove to the store, checked myself in the visor mirror.
Beast was still gone.

Picked up dinner, stopped for snacks and drinks in another store.
Walked past the liquor store three times.
And that was that.

huhn, right?

I know this might sound kind of odd, but I thought posting it might help anyone else who has the same kind of disconnect/dysmorphic tendencies as I do. I didn't feel these emotions of arousal (from the beast) or relief (from me) at the appropriate times during this episode, but I sure did recognize the difference between It and I. And I count that as a success.
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Old 10-12-2012, 09:49 AM
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Obladi, I got a lot out of what you posted. We are not all the same. How I am able to "connect" with myself and the Beast is not always going to be the same as everyone else. Heck, even talking to different people who have done AVRT/RR, they even see their Beast differently.

Looking in the mirror worked for you. You didn't drink. I'd say that's a great moment!
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