The thought of doing the Hoffman Process arose on a whim. And like so many whims, it became a pivotal moment. I had recommended the Process to people that I had treated, but somehow never really applied it to myself.
I was in my early sixties and had been single for fifteen years. My four children had left home and were all getting settled in their various careers. It was the end of an era. I had my work, and that filled a gap. But more than anything I just felt hollow.
Then I developed a rare condition in my wrist and there was the possibility that I might not be able to continue to practice – a very bleak prospect. It took seven months from diagnosis to surgery and during that time I spent many mornings sitting at the kitchen table, sobbing. A good friend had given me a daily schedule including some meditations, but at times the hole was just too deep and wide.
Cooking single-handedly is a real pain, as are dressing and other personal functions. It was also impossible to drive. I couldn’t get any disability support as there was the possibility that it was still a non-permanent condition. The outlook was not great, and the surgeon gave me a 50/50 chance of recovery.
I took to walking, using buses and reminding myself everything had to change. All sorts of unexpected demons were manifesting themselves. The biggest eye-opener of all was that I realised I’d spent my entire life being busy, focusing on the next project and distracting myself by endlessly helping others. Now here I was with nothing to distract me from the inner turmoil I was having to face. No props left.
So I picked up the phone and booked on to the Hoffman Process.
The comprehensive, gentle and firm week on the Process gave me an opportunity to understand, embrace and totally change my perceptions of my slightly weird childhood. It allowed me to evaluate all the lessons that I’d learned and work out why I reacted to things in the way I did. It also helped me look at the way I had brought up my own children and how our family systems can pass on behaviours from one generation to the next. One of the most interesting things is that I was able to reflect on how my own parents had been brought up, to be curious about their childhoods and all the things that happened to them. By having compassion for what they went through, I allowed myself the freedom to move on from the past.
Knowledge and understanding, applied with love and wisdom, is a great healer.
The Hoffman Process completely rebooted my outlook. I saw that life can be fragile and you can get knocked backwards. But I also learned that sometimes the thing you’re most scared of can become the thing that you most need to embrace.
I’m a much calmer and more easy-going person than before. I’m so much more at peace with myself and, as a result of that, with the world. I’m a more purposeful mother, grandmother and friend. My wish now is not to hide away, but to continue to embrace all and everyone.
Of course, all of this has a happy ending… I have made a complete and total recovery from the serious wrist problem. I now work less, which is a good thing as I have so much else going on in my life. Being semi-retired can be very hectic but it can be great fun and fulfilling too. Who would have believed it…?
You can find out more about Caroline and her work at: caroline-laurence.co.uk
Caroline is featured in the 2018 issue of Hoffman magazine. To order a FREE copy for yourself, friends or family, click here.