Isolation, Withdrawal & Opening Up

Saturday 24 November, 2001

My back felt a little better this morning and I resolved to take it very easy but not to hang around at home for too long. My priority was to get to Sunil’s flat come what may. I phoned Calvin to see what he was doing and we met at the train station and travelled together to meet up with Dev, Robert, Leon and Kuldip who were already working hard finishing the painting of the flat.

I was able to take things easy yet also help out. Ishwar arrived and joined Calvin in doing a great job on the stairs. In both cases it highlighted their ‘Be Perfect’ natures which they had hitherto refused to accept. In Calvin’s case it helped him to see that when he dances he is too busy trying to be perfect to enjoy himself. Kuldip isolated himself for most of the day, either shunning our tea-breaks or not being aware that they were going on. Either way it would seem impossible to isolate oneself in such a small flat, but he managed it.

After the work was completed I suggested we have a feedback session. Robert’s reaction was to suggest some toast first, which implied he was uncomfortable with another feedback session. [Karaj: You need to eat as well. Feedback sessions do not fill stomachs.] It wasn’t particularly structured but we all talked and when Sunil arrived home he joined in. We sat and chatted until such a time when Robert declared that he was tired and needed to go to bed. He began to sulk and make a drama out of it simply because none of the others were ready for sleep. In the end he went to bed upstairs.

However, he couldn’t sleep, so he came back down and we talked. He told us that he does this all the time, he withdraws from situations when he doesn’t get his way or when he feels patronised. He told us a story of a job he had walked out of because he had felt patronised by the cook. I wondered how patronised he feels by the men. It certainly illuminated a few things for me. His reaction to me taking control last weekend was borne out of the same feeling of being patronised. [Karaj: Keep an eye on this.]

While he was trying to get to sleep he had missed Sunil’s prayers, so he asked to read something from his new bible. He went to fetch it and I remarked to the others that he needed to lighten up before he read anything, so we had a game of cards first.

Calvin and Ishwar finally left at around 3am and the rest of us got ready for bed. I asked if we all had our feet on the ground and Dev asked why I had made such a comment. Robert supported him, wondering why I had mentioned it. I reminded them of our resolution last week that we would take five minutes to centre ourselves after a good time and that although we may feel very grounded at the moment, it is a good habit to get into, whether we are centred or not. Robert agreed.


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