From Reclaiming Our Days, Meditations for incest survivors, by Helena See, A Fireside Parkside Meditation Book,1993, page for December 1:
" 'Feel the feelings.' 'Release the pain.' What do these mean? How do we do that exactly? We're lucky if we can even identify the feelings we're having, since we're so used to stuffing and ignoring them.
We keep the tears and anguish so bottled up inside that suddenly we can't hold them in any longer. We cry uncontrollably, or rage spontaneously, or tremble in fear, or wake up sweating in the middle of the night, or get hysterical giggles over nothing. These are the body's way of releasing pent-up feelings. We can help stay in balance by letting these out regularly rather than waiting until we explode.
We don't need to be afraid of releasing these feelings. We have so often confused the releasing of the feeling with the feeling itself. But there's a huge difference. The feeling is something we carry with us, that gnaws at our gut. It's always there, sometimes in our awareness. Many times we are only aware of it when it has built up to the exploding point.
Releasing these feelings helps us heal. It's built into our human system as part of the hardware; it's how we work. Release doesn't cause the pain; holding it in causes the pain. Releasing is healing.
I will welcome the healing of my tears, rages, trembles, and laughs."
Learning to recognise what I am feeling has been some of the hardest work that I have done. It isn't finished yet. I still sometimes don't recognise my feelings for what they are. Sometimes I still can't tell you what I am feeling especially in times of stress. Sometimes when I get a headache then I know I am resisting what I am feeling. The headache is my body's way of getting my attention.
Do you always know what you are feeling? Do you know when you are resisting feeling? How do you handle stress? Do you recognise stress in your body? Where do you feel stress?