*Alumni Highlight* Anne Ligthart
7 May 2019
ALWAYS THE (TIME) TRAVELLER
I offered to write something of myself and my work as a psychotherapist. Of course that’s never something that is static and before the ink dries - if there was any - it’s only changed. Time and again.
Such is the nature of work as a time traveller masquerading as a psychotherapist. As a new graduate, I recall asking my cohort about finding a niche. I felt strongly that I was “good at it” but didn’t know what I was good at. The responses from other colleagues was equally as vague - from “no idea” to advice on consulting with a professional coach to find out. I took that as a reason to find it over Time and through the work itself.
As a psychotherapist, my fifth career including motherhood, it is a blend of everything of the past - places in time - that enter the consulting room and invite the same from my client. In that space, all things are considered and shared through the careful and focused methods employed skilfully. It’s colourful, alive, active and many clients become drowsy! …Huh?
The niche I work most effectively within is Complex Trauma and related presentations. I have chosen this area, due to it’s sheer excitement and my ability to stimulate my own and the other’s courage. To work well with trauma, one has to by necessity become trained and knowledgeable through a series of workshops and professional development. Of course what happens as you know, is that my own biography comes sharply into focus for laundering and hanging out to dry in the sun.
To accompany this cutting edge work, I needed an alliance of spiritual depth and have recently completed a five year postgraduate training in Anthroposophical psychotherapy. I had to! To be able to sustain the tragedy and horror of the human race and not run from it, one needs no less than God and the Angelic kingdom in his court. This alliance makes it necessary to call myself to task, to take good care of the life processes and to pray. A lot.
It’s deeply rewarding work but often lonely. Even the support of colleagues and supervisors doesn’t quite reach the edges of the wilderness that I may at Times embody. Through prayer - and I mean simply talking at length to the spiritual world and trusting myself completely - the wilderness is still there but it’s not eternal - it’s a place I can move into and out of. Right now, I am transitioning out of …these places are all part of the work we share in the therapy room - we move through Time and Space, while all the Time knowing that by default we will not remain anywhere for long. As long as we are here, on earth.