I was still working in graphic design for the paper when I designed my first business card. I used line art of a Swallowtail butterfly and then had it printed on heavy cream linen card stock. It was embossed. I was very proud of that design and I was an intern at that point in time.
I was thinking about an experience I had with a sandtray and why the sandtray should not be used with Intuitive types that have 12th house Neptune in Scorpio.
They already know all those images and they get too flooded.
Stick with Gestalt or cognitive techniques.
Robert had piercing intellect and piercing blue eyes. He sat in the front row that first year and asked all the questions. We were a group of 30 or so on campus. Some of us might have felt intimidated by him? But as time went on and we got to know him that changed!
What an artist he is. One of his photographs was the biggest gift to me you would not even believe it.
He said wonderful things about my work to me — and, once I gave him a pastel of the moon.
That “Pearl of Great Price” I was talking about. If you were ever down in Mexico and needed to see someone, this is a referral I’d make.
Anyway, I had had all that work done by Dennis before I entered Pacifica Graduate Institute. What I didn’t realize was that Dennis had no plans of seeing me while I was in school. In fact, he said, “that’s all you need.”
What he meant was that, taking care of people’s problems was something I was a specialist at, and that, being a therapist was just going to be more of that. It was.
The therapist is a container for things.
It isn’t an easy job, especially when the world’s problems seem to be increasing daily.
I had to think of a way to work faster and a way I could also protect my own psyche — which I do feel is like a butterfly in a way.
So anyway, I had to find a therapist to take me through the hours I needed for Pacifica. I found one in the phonebook who specialized in Depth.
She scared the hell out of me that first session.
Her office was literally flooded with sandtray figures. I mean, I had never seen the likes of the entire collective unconcious literally falling of the shelves and onto the floor and spilling from baskets and well?
I said “I need cognitive work.”
She insisted that I do a sandtray.
So I did.
It took me a long time but it ended up showing the split between light and shadow. Over on her side I put a giant plastic tarantula right in the middle and surrounded it with all the hideous things I could find. That side was “black.”
Over on my side I put a Kuan Yin surrounded by light objects.
I said, “this is me.”
I had no idea who Kuan Yin was at that time.
Later when I was an intern I worked for a time in that office.
My office was a “clean slate” — because that is how I worked.
I had a Magritte up in there. Well, they asked me to take it down because it was causing anxiety — especially for her.
It was this one:
It makes me laugh to remember that now.
What I was doing was building a ‘self’ out of the swarmy sea of the collective.
The opposite of what she was doing with the sandtray.
I love how Robert discusses that on his page above.
He even has a picture of a giant tarantula!
Anyway, back to what Robert did and said.
He said, “Adrienne, you are really going to be a therapist.”
Well, I was. I was a good one too. If I hadn’t gone through all that loss I did, I’d still be doing it. But you know what? It’s a very hard job.
What I would rather do now is make art?
I just want to smile, make art, and be happy at this point in life.
I still have dozens of my butterfly cards left over. And, I’m going through all my old papers because there may be valuable things I was writing in them that I might choose to expand on now — as a writer.
That gardener at Pacifica who always let me pick a strawberry when I was overwhelmed?
He was the greatest.
“I’m just a gardener,” he said.
Well, he was so much more than that to me. He was a fabulous individual just like everyone was that I encountered there.
I hope to put all my client’s tales into my characters now. I seem to be able to write the short stories that can contain them?
Dennis Slattery told me I was a writer, even back then.
Maybe I always was?
Oh well…it sure is good to see my old classmate in here and like I said — this is a referral if you are ever down in Mexico! And need somebody to talk to…
I’ll tell you more about the tarantula woman later…