Annie Garrety in Rome, The Path Unfolds as I Fly
Dear friends in Gestalt Therapy Brisbane Community
I am leaving Rome where my training in Psychopathology continued with Jean Marie Robine and Margherita Spagnuolo Lobb in the second training with our group. It is wonderful to be in such a group as this where our different temperaments are explained as much by culture as personal history or circumstance. Always we approach our work on theory, exploration in small groups and practical examples in the knowledge or frame of our field which is both forming and forming us as we go. The Danes and Romanians are very direct and the Georgians reticent and yet intense, the Polish are passionate and the Russians warm but all this perhaps captured somewhere between perception and projection from my Australian and personal eyes and ears. I have a personal soft spot for the Irish and our one Spaniard who lives in Germany. From Malta to Brazil, Bulgaria to Korea the splashes of culture colour our individuations. Everyday we watch one amongst us do personal work and analyse the work with care and reference to the theory given.
It is so rich and touching to see that what we have in common is our carefully hidden and sometimes naked desire to make contact and be seen and received just where we are. Anxiety was so clearly appreciated in all our contact moderations while Shame was so poignantly connected to both anxiety and a need to resolve the paradox of the desire to being seen (with our desires) and the disturbance of being seen (naked in our desire).
With Psychopathology of borderline and psychotic experiences the advice for how to apply the theory is so explicitly different between the borderline ground, psychotic ground and neurotic ground. What is important for a diagnosis is not only the interventional decisions for when the active symptoms of pathology are obvious but also and more importantly when they are not (but their psychotic or borderline ground is still of course operating between you). This skill to recognise such a different perceptual lens as ground, that is not to be cured but supported, is a quiet revolution. A revolution of an inclusion that is not naive of the needs of such perception, but rather that accepts and assists.
In the 5 days of each training we grow closer as a group. We laugh we shout we cry (they seem very passionate to me, I apparently seem passionate to them) and we grow in our individuation and our togetherness. I am deeply satisfied with these times of growth and learning and I look forward to our next 5 days together in Milan in November when we shall look at depression with Gianni Francesetti and processes of mourning with Carmen Vazquez from Spain.
First photo: you can see Jean-Marie in the left and Paul and I at the back where we are having fun at an Italian restaurant nearby the training.
Second photo: is my dear Friend Els from Belgium and my wonderful friend Kia from Denmark and Korea doing a pushing exercise.