Sonia's StorySep 03, 2021
One of my wonderful clients, Sonia, wrote an absolutely beautiful account of her experience working with me and I am so humbled and honored to share it with you!
Here's what Sonia said...
"I have been working with Caroline as a journal speak coach for over a year. I had been journaling on my own for about a year before meeting Caroline at an online short retreat led by Nicole Sachs. And prior to starting journaling, I had been doing emotional work for decades in other forms, like therapy and re-evaluation counseling.
I have to say, things really started moving and changing for me since stumbling upon this work. I heard about the work from my physical therapist, who was telling me about Nicole's podcasts and his own journey with chronic pain. He wasn't suggesting I should try it, but the minute I got home, I binged just about all of Nicole's podcasts, took her initial course, and started journal-speaking every day (which I have continued daily).
In 3 months, my chronic rib cage/chest pain, neck pain, migraine headaches and musculoskeletal pain in many other parts of my body were gone. Gone. I then started running, which I had loved doing as a teen, and was amazed that I could run without pain. A few months later, I developed heel and foot pain; the dreaded plantar fasciitis. I suspected it was another coded signal from my nervous system that something was too dangerous, and I needed to be protected by withdrawing from certain parts of life (TMS). However, I had my doubts that it was truly an injury, and could not get it to go away no matter how doggedly I journaled and meditated with self compassion.
Enter Caroline Lee Dewey. I had been writing about some trauma from my childhood and thought I needed to not be alone with the heavy feelings. I decided to splurge and buy a series of sessions with Caroline. It has been an almost magical experience to work with her, and she has provided crucial help that I really needed.
I started typing notes during our sessions, because I did not want to forget a single thing she said. I still look back at my notes and find pearls and tips and directions that lead to “aha” moments. But most of all, I felt (and feel) heard by Caroline. She listened deeply and seems to understand all parts of me. We focused on large concepts, my experiences, my specific questions, and other things, but also very specific focus on the foot pain I was having.
Caroline wondered what this part of my body (foot) might symbolize, and I thought it was the place where we connected to the ground. So, we worked on being grounded. She also suggested that we sometimes feel about our foot pain how we felt about something else earlier in our life. That was a golden realization for me, that my system was giving me a diluted way to feel the feelings that seemed too hard to feel otherwise. It's like a new language my body gave me, but I didn't always understand that language!
There were many, many similar pearls and topics for journaling about. Caroline helped demystify the concept of spirituality by saying it's where you feel most present and most yourself. Where had she been all my life with this definition? That really helped. Caroline provided encouragement when I needed it. She said it can feel like this process is taking forever, but you never know when things shift fast all of a sudden when you get to that next place.
She also helped me find imagery that helped. I couldn't really make the term inner child work without cringing, and she offered to use the term inner world, or soul, or inner self. The metaphor of a child is useful because it shows innocence, love, and the impressionable little thing that we're trying to reconnect with, but using “inner world” works much better for me. I like that she thinks our inner child likes to have fun, and that this work doesn't have to be all heavy lifting, but can be fun.
My foot pain is now gone. When I get a twinge or an “oh no, not again” feeling, I take Caroline's advice and say to myself that a part of me is feeling disappointed in myself that I am not done with this, or whatever else it is I'm feeling about it at the time, but then I make room for what other parts of me are thinking and feeling about it, and about me. For example, another part of me feels love for my foot and compassion for everything my foot has gone through. And another part of me knows that this will not last forever, and will pass… and give room for many parts of me, not just the part of me that is first reflexed when I feel the pain.
I also think of it as a language or code that my inner system is trying to communicate with, and try to listen to what is trying to be said. I try to hear my inner self. And to know that everything is ok. But more important than the foot pain being gone, I feel like some heavy patterns of thinking and being have changed. I think some of the work I did prior to JournalSpeak loosened the edges, but the journaling I do myself, and then the guiding, support, companionship and sharing of upsets and triumphs with Caroline have made an unexpectedly huge and I think permanent difference."
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