Once in a Blue Moon
This weekend we will have a blue moon (second full moon in a calendar month). This has brought back memories of a book I read as a child when during the blue moon creatures who were usually trapped in signs were able to escape their frames for the night to experience new things, but they had to make sure they were back by morning. (If anyone can tell me the name of the book I’d be very grateful). This blue moon is also taking place on Halloween when in any other year I would be planning a fancy-dress costume, I love the excuse to try something out of my ordinary for the night.
Once I realised this co-occurrence was happening, I started reflecting on how we can all end up feeling stuck doing, and being, the same thing day in and day out. It often takes something extraordinary to prompt us to step outside of our everyday existence to try something new. Both Halloween and the blue moon in my childhood book offered an opportunity to try something different. Most importantly, these spaces are boundaried.
Some of you will know that I talk about the importance of boundaries a lot. This is because having a clearly defined space and time brings with it a sense of safety that can help us to step outside of our comfort zone and to try something new. This is because we know it is contained within this time and place, it is not forever. Sometimes, it is in these spaces, that we find new ways of being that we wish to carry with us into our everyday lives and then we can begin to make different choices.
Counselling can be that safe space. It allows us give voice to parts of ourselves that may feel too fragile to be shared in our everyday life. We can, then, begin to work toward understanding and acceptance away from the fear of the reactions these parts might receive from people around us. When I went through this process in my own therapy, I became happier, because I was able to be more authentically myself rather than putting on a performance of who I thought I should be. Even the way I dress changed and these days my Halloween costumes are much more likely to come out of my everyday wardrobe, rather than the dressing up box. I no longer need an external reason to explore who I am and give voice to my different aspects. Although any excuse to get my face paints out is always pleasing.
Let me know, in the comments, which bits of yourself you only let out once in a blue moon but would like to see more of.